Large areas of high population density. In OT usage, “cities” had a defensive wall around them; “villages” were unwalled. None of the cities in Palestine compare in size to the great cities of Mesopotamia. Nineveh covered approximately 1,720 acres, or over 2.5 square miles. By comparison, Jerusalem at the time of Solomon covered only 33 acres, and even at the time of Jesus covered less than 200 acres.