And those twelve stones, which they took out of Jordan, did Joshua pitch in Gilgal.
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George Leo Haydock
Galgal. It received its name afterwards, chap. v. 9. It lay in a direct line from Jericho to the Jordan eastwards, being ten stadia from the former, and fifty from the latter place. Josue had his camp here while he subdued the kings of Chanaan, (Calmet) as it had plenty of water and wood in its environs; (Menochius) though perhaps at this time, there were no houses. Saul was here recognized king of all Israel, 1 Kings xi. 14. Tertullian (contra Marc. iv.) supposes, that the twelve stones were placed on the ark, in arc am, which is not at all probable. (Calmet)
But they might be erected in its vicinity, and that may perhaps be the meaning of the author. (Haydock)
R. Levi says the stones were placed near the ark, that all Israel might see them thrice a year. Josephus believes that an altar was formed of them.