Madaba History : Madaba dates from the Middle Bronze Age. The town of Madaba was once a Moabite border city, mentioned in the Bible in Numbers 21:30 and Joshua 13:9. Control over the city changed back and forth between Israel and Moab, as mentioned in the Mesha Stele. During its rule by the Roman and Byzantine empires from the 2nd to the 7th centuries, the city formed part of the Provincia Arabia set up by the Roman Emperor Trajan to replace the Nabataean kingdom of Petra. The first evidence for a Christian community in the city, with its own bishop, is found in the Acts of the Council of Chalcedon in 451, where Constantine, Metropolitan Archbishop of Bostra (the provincial capital) signed on behalf of Gaiano, "Bishop of the Medabeni." During the rule of the Islamic Umayyad Caliphate, it was part of the southern district of Jund Filastin within the Bilad al-Sham province. Modern settlement : The resettlement of the city ruins by 90 Arab Christian-convert families from Al Karak, in the south, led by two Italian priests from the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem in 1880. This period saw the start of archaeological research. This in turn substantially supplemented the scant documentation available. The Catholic Church's list of titular sees uses the spelling "Medaba", traditional in reference to the ancient bishopric centred on this city, while at the same time referring to the modern city as 'Madaba". Climate : Madaba has a hot-summer Mediterranean climate (Köppen climate classification Csa). Most rain falls in the winter. The average annual temperature in Madaba is 16.4 °C (61.5 °F). About 346 mm (13.62 in) of precipitation falls annually.