The Romans gave the name Decapolis (meaning ‘ten cities’) to an extensive region situated largely south and east of the Sea of Galilee. Its inhabitants were mainly Gentiles. The New Testament mentions two of its localities, Gadara and Gerasa, and certain occasions on which Jesus visited the region. On one of these occasions Jesus healed a demon possessed man, though the incident brought him into conflict with local pig farmers (Matt 8:28; Mark 5:1,11-14; 7:31). Many of the people from the area joined the crowds that at one time followed Jesus (Matt 4:25).

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