Due to the city's strategic geographic position and the abundance of water from nearby springs, Neapolis prospered, accumulating extensive territory, including the former Judean toparchy of Acraba.
Insofar as the mountainous topography of the site would allow, the city was built on a Roman grid plan and settled with veterans who fought in the victorious legions, as well as other foreign colonists.
Located between Mount Ebal and Mount Gerizim, the new city is two kilometers (one mile) west of the Biblical city of Shechem, which the Romans destroyed during the first Jewish-Roman war.
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It retained this status until the rule of Trebonianus Gallus in 251 CE.
The Encyclopaedia Judaica speculates that Christianity was dominant in the 2nd or 3rd century, with some sources positing a later date of 480 CE.
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