Salting the earth, or sowing with salt, is the ritual of spreading salt on the site of cities razed by conquerers. It originated as a curse on re-inhabitation in the ancient Near East and became a well-established folkloric motif in the Middle Ages. The best-known case is the salting of Shechem in Judges 9:45; the supposed salting of Carthage is now believed to be a nineteenth-century invention.
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