Nablus is a city in the northern West Bank, approximately 49 kilometers north of Jerusalem, with a population of 126,132. Located between Mount Ebal and Mount Gerizim, it is the capital of the Nablus Governorate and a Palestinian commercial and cultural center, home to An-Najah National University, one of the largest Palestinian institutions of higher learning, and the Palestinian Stock Exchange.
The city was named by the Roman emperor Vespasian in 72 CE as Flavia Neapolis. During the Byzantine period, conflict between the city's Christian and Samaritan inhabitants peaked in a series of Samaritan revolts before their suppression in 529 dwindled that community's numbers in the city. With the Muslim conquest in the 7th century, the city was given its present Arabic name Nablus. The Crusaders drafted the laws of the Kingdom of Jerusalem in the Council of Nablus and its Muslim, Christian and Samaritan inhabitants prospered. The city then came under the control of the Ayyubids and Mamluk Sultanate. Under the Ottomans, who conquered the city in 1517, Nablus served as the administrative and commercial center for the surrounding area, corresponding to the present-day northern West Bank.
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