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je-roo'-sa-lem (vision of peace, the habitation of peace)
David, Golgotha, Jesus, Kingdom of Judah, Nebuzaradan, Nehemiah, Solomon, Wailing Wall (Place), Zion
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Easton's Bible Dictionary

called also Salem, Ariel, Jebus, the "city of God," the "holy city;" by the modern Arabs el-Khuds, meaning "the holy;" once "the city of Judah" ( 2 Chronicles 25:28 ). This name is in the original in the dual form, and means "possession of peace," or "foundation of peace." The dual form probably refers to the two mountains on which it was built, viz., Zion and Moriah; or, as some suppose, to the two parts of the city, the "upper" and the "lower city." Jerusalem is a "mountain city enthroned on a mountain fastness" (Compare Psalms 68:15 , 68:16 ; 87:1 ; 125:2 ; 76:1 , 76:2 ; 122:3 ). It stands on the edge of one of the highest table-lands in Palestine, and is surrounded on the south-eastern, the southern, and the western sides by deep and precipitous ravines.

It is first mentioned in Scripture under the name Salem ( Genesis 14:18 ; Compare Psalms 76:2 ). When first mentioned under the name Jerusalem, Adonizedek was its king ( Joshua 10:1 ). It is afterwards named among the cities of Benjamin ( Judges 19:10 ; 1 Chronicles 11:4 ); but in the time of David it was divided between Benjamin and Judah. After the death of Joshua the city was taken and set on fire by the men of Judah ( Judges 1:1-8 ); but the Jebusites were not wholly driven out of it. The city is not again mentioned till we are told that David brought the head of Goliath thither ( 1 Samuel 17:54 ). David afterwards led his forces against the Jebusites still residing within its walls, and drove them out, fixing his own dwelling on Zion, which he called "the city of David" ( 2 Samuel 5:5 - 9 ; 1 Chronicles 11:4 - 8 ). Here he built an altar to the Lord on the threshing-floor of Araunah the Jebusite ( 2 Samuel 24:15 - 25 ), and thither he brought up the ark of the covenant and placed it in the new tabernacle which he had prepared for it. Jerusalem now became the capital of the kingdom.

After the death of David, Solomon built the temple, a house for the name of the Lord, on Mount Moriah (B.C. 1010). He also greatly strengthened and adorned the city, and it became the great centre of all the civil and religious affairs of the nation ( Deuteronomy 12:5 ; comp 12:14 ; 14:23 ; 16:11 - 16 ; Psalms 122 ).

After the disruption of the kingdom on the accession to the throne of Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, Jerusalem became the capital of the kingdom of the two tribes. It was subsequently often taken and retaken by the Egyptians, the Assyrians, and by the kings of Israel ( 2 Kings 14:13 , 14:14 ; 18:15 , 18:16 ; 23:33 - 35 ; 24:14 ; 2 Chronicles 12:9 ; 26:9 ; 2 Kings 27:3 , 27:4 ; 29:3 ; 32:30 ; 33:11 ), till finally, for the abounding iniquities of the nation, after a siege of three years, it was taken and utterly destroyed, its walls razed to the ground, and its temple and palaces consumed by fire, by Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon ( 2 Kings 25 ; 2 Chronicles 36 ; Jeremiah 39 ), B.C. 588. The desolation of the city and the land was completed by the retreat of the principal Jews into Egypt ( Jeremiah 40 - 44), and by the final carrying captive into Babylon of all that still remained in the land ( Jeremiah 52:3 ), so that it was left without an inhabitant (B.C. 582). Compare the predictions, Deuteronomy 28 ; Leviticus 26:14-39 .

But the streets and walls of Jerusalem were again to be built, in troublous times ( Daniel 9:16 , 9:19 , 9:25 ), after a captivity of seventy years. This restoration was begun B.C. 536, "in the first year of Cyrus" ( Ezra 1:2 , 1:3 , 1:5 - 11 ). The Books of Ezra and Nehemiah contain the history of the re-building of the city and temple, and the restoration of the kingdom of the Jews, consisting of a portion of all the tribes. The kingdom thus constituted was for two centuries under the dominion of Persia, till B.C. 331; and thereafter, for about a century and a half, under the rulers of the Greek empire in Asia, till B.C. 167. For a century the Jews maintained their independence under native rulers, the Asmonean princes. At the close of this period they fell under the rule of Herod and of members of his family, but practically under Rome, till the time of the destruction of Jerusalem, A.D. 70. The city was then laid in ruins.

The modern Jerusalem by-and-by began to be built over the immense beds of rubbish resulting from the overthrow of the ancient city; and whilst it occupies certainly the same site, there are no evidences that even the lines of its streets are now what they were in the ancient city. Till A.D. 131 the Jews who still lingered about Jerusalem quietly submitted to the Roman sway. But in that year the emperor (Hadrian), in order to hold them in subjection, rebuilt and fortified the city. The Jews, however, took possession of it, having risen under the leadership of one Bar-Chohaba (i.e., "the son of the star") in revolt against the Romans. Some four years afterwards (A.D. 135), however, they were driven out of it with great slaughter, and the city was again destroyed; and over its ruins was built a Roman city called Aelia Capitolina, a name which it retained till it fell under the dominion of the Mohammedans, when it was called el-Khuds, i.e., "the holy."

In A.D. 326 Helena, mother of the emperor Constantine, made a pilgrimage to Jerusalem with the view of discovering the places mentioned in the life of our Lord. She caused a church to be built on what was then supposed to be the place of the nativity at Bethlehem. Constantine, animated by her example, searched for the holy sepulchre, and built over the supposed site a magnificent church, which was completed and dedicated A.D. 335. He relaxed the laws against the Jews till this time in force, and permitted them once a year to visit the city and wail over the desolation of "the holy and beautiful house."

In A.D. 614 the Persians, after defeating the Roman forces of the emperor Heraclius, took Jerusalem by storm, and retained it till A.D. 637, when it was taken by the Arabians under the Khalif Omar. It remained in their possession till it passed, in A.D. 960, under the dominion of the Fatimite khalifs of Egypt, and in A.D. 1073 under the Turcomans. In A.D. 1099 the crusader Godfrey of Bouillon took the city from the Moslems with great slaughter, and was elected king of Jerusalem. He converted the Mosque of Omar into a Christian cathedral. During the eighty-eight years which followed, many churches and convents were erected in the holy city. The Church of the Holy Sepulchre was rebuilt during this period, and it alone remains to this day. In A.D. 1187 the sultan Saladin wrested the city from the Christians. From that time to the present day, with few intervals, Jerusalem has remained in the hands of the Moslems. It has, however, during that period been again and again taken and retaken, demolished in great part and rebuilt, no city in the world having passed through so many vicissitudes.

In the year 1850 the Greek and Latin monks residing in Jerusalem had a fierce dispute about the guardianship of what are called the "holy places." In this dispute the emperor Nicholas of Russia sided with the Greeks, and Louis Napoleon, the emperor of the French, with the Latins. This led the Turkish authorities to settle the question in a way unsatisfactory to Russia. Out of this there sprang the Crimean War, which was protracted and sanguinary, but which had important consequences in the way of breaking down the barriers of Turkish exclusiveness.

Modern Jerusalem "lies near the summit of a broad mountain-ridge, which extends without interruption from the plain of Esdraelon to a line drawn between the southern end of the Dead Sea and the southeastern corner of the Mediterranean." This high, uneven table-land is everywhere from 20 to 25 geographical miles in breadth. It was anciently known as the mountains of Ephraim and Judah.

"Jerusalem is a city of contrasts, and differs widely from Damascus, not merely because it is a stone town in mountains, whilst the latter is a mud city in a plain, but because while in Damascus Moslem religion and Oriental custom are unmixed with any foreign element, in Jerusalem every form of religion, every nationality of East and West, is represented at one time."

Jerusalem is first mentioned under that name in the Book of Joshua, and the Tell-el-Amarna collection of tablets includes six letters from its Amorite king to Egypt, recording the attack of the Abiri about B.C. 1480. The name is there spelt Uru-Salim ("city of peace"). Another monumental record in which the Holy City is named is that of Sennacherib's attack in B.C. 702. The "camp of the Assyrians" was still shown about A.D. 70, on the flat ground to the north-west, included in the new quarter of the city.

The city of David included both the upper city and Millo, and was surrounded by a wall built by David and Solomon, who appear to have restored the original Jebusite fortifications. The name Zion (or Sion) appears to have been, like Ariel ("the hearth of God"), a poetical term for Jerusalem, but in the Greek age was more specially used of the Temple hill. The priests' quarter grew up on Ophel, south of the Temple, where also was Solomon's Palace outside the original city of David. The walls of the city were extended by Jotham and Manasseh to include this suburb and the Temple ( 2 Chronicles 27:3 ; 33:14 ).

Jerusalem is now a town of some 50,000 inhabitants, with ancient mediaeval walls, partly on the old lines, but extending less far to the south. The traditional sites, as a rule, were first shown in the 4th and later centuries A.D., and have no authority. The results of excavation have, however, settled most of the disputed questions, the limits of the Temple area, and the course of the old walls having been traced.


Hitchcock's Dictionary of Bible Names

vision of peace


Smith's Bible Dictionary

(the habitation of peace),

Jerusalem stands in latitude 31 degrees 46 35" north and longitude 35 degrees 18 30" east of Greenwich. It is 32 miles distant from the sea and 18 from the Jordan, 20 from Hebron and 36 from Samaria. "In several respects," says Dean Stanley, "its situation is singular among the cities of Palestine. Its elevation is remarkable; occasioned not from its being on the summit of one of the numerous hills of Judea, like most of the towns and villages, but because it is on the edge of one of the highest table-lands of the country. Hebron indeed is higher still by some hundred feet, and from the south, accordingly (even from Bethlehem), the approach to Jerusalem is by a slight descent. But from any other side the ascent is perpetual; and to the traveller approaching the city from the east or west it must always have presented the appearance beyond any other capital of the then known world --we may say beyond any important city that has ever existed on the earth --of a mountain city; breathing, as compared with the sultry plains of Jordan, a mountain air; enthroned, as compared with jericho or Damascus, Gaza or Tyre, on a mountain fastness." --S. & P. 170,

Jerusalem, if not actually in the centre of Palestine, was yet virtually so. "It was on the ridge, the broadest and most strongly-marked ridge of the backbone of the complicated hills which extend through the whole country from the plain of Esdraelon to the desert."


There appear to have been but two main approaches to the city:-- From the Jordan valley by Jericho and the Mount of Olives. This was the route commonly taken from the north and east of the country. From the great maritime plain of Philistia and Sharon. This road led by the two Beth-horons up to the high ground at Gibeon, whence it turned south, and came to Jerusalem by Ramah and Gibeah, and over the ridge north of the city.

Topography. --

To convey an idea of the position of Jerusalem, we may say, roughly, that the city occupies the southern termination of the table-land which is cut off from the country round it on its west, south and east sides by ravines more than usually deep and precipitous. These ravines leave the level of the table-land, the one on the west and the other on the northeast of the city, and fall rapidly until they form a junction below its southeast corner. The eastern one --the valley of the Kedron, commonly called the valley of Jehoshaphat --runs nearly straight from north by south. But the western one --the valley of Hinnom-- runs south for a time, and then takes a sudden bend to the east until it meets the valley of Jehoshaphat, after which the two rush off as one to the Dead Sea. How sudden is their descent may be gathered from the fact that the level at the point of junction -about a mile and a quarter from the starting-point of each-- is more than 600 feet below that of the upper plateau from which they began their descent. So steep is the fall of the ravines, so trench-like their character, and so close do they keep to the promontory at whose feet they run, as to leave on the beholder almost the impression of the ditch at the foot of a fortress rather than of valleys formed by nature. The promontory thus encircled is itself divided by a longitudinal ravine running up it from south to north, called the valley of the Tyropoeon, rising gradually from the south, like the external ones, till at last it arrives at the level of the upper plateau, dividing the central mass into two unequal portions. Of these two, that on the west is the higher and more massive, on which the city of Jerusalem now stands, and in fact always stood. The hill on the east is considerably lower and smaller, so that to a spectator from the south the city appears to slope sharply toward the east. Here was the temple, and here stands now the great Mohammedan sanctuary with its mosques and domes. The name of MOUNT ZION has been applied to the western hill from the time of Constantine to the present day. The eastern hill, called MOUNT MORIAH in ( 2 Chronicles 3:1 ) was as already remarked, the site of the temple. It was situated in the southwest angle of the area, now known as the Haram area, and was, as we learn from Josephus, an exact square of a stadium, or 600 Greek feet, on each side. (Conder ("Bible Handbook," 1879) states that by the latest surveys the Haram area is a quadrangle with unequal sides. The west wall measures 1601 feet, the south 922, the east 1530, the north 1042. It is thus nearly a mile in circumference, and contains 35 acres. --ED.) Attached to the northwest angle of the temple was the Antonia, a tower or fortress. North of the side of the temple is the building now known to Christians as the Mosque of Omar, but by Moslems called the Dome of the Rock. The southern continuation of the eastern hill was named OPHEL, which gradually came to a point at the junction of the valleys Tyropoeon and Jehoshaphat; and the norther BEZETHA, "the new city," first noticed by Josephus, which was separated from Moriah by an artificial ditch, and overlooked the valley of Kedron on the east; this hill was enclosed within the walls of Herod Agrippa. Lastly, ACRA lay westward of Moriah and northward of Zion, and formed the "lower city" in the time of Josephus.

Walls. --

These are described by Josephus. The first or old wall was built by David and Solomon, and enclosed Zion and part of Mount Moriah. (The second wall enclosed a portion of the city called Acra or Millo, on the north of the city, from the tower of Mariamne to the tower of Antonia. It was built as the city enlarged in size; begun by Uzziah 140 years after the first wall was finished, continued by Jotham 50 years later, and by Manasseh 100 years later still. It was restored by Nehemiah. Even the latest explorations have failed to decide exactly what was its course. (See Conders Handbook of the Bible, art. Jerusalem. ) The third wall was built by King Herod Agrippa, and was intended to enclose the suburbs which had grown out on the northern sides of the city, which before this had been left exposed. After describing these walls, Josephus adds that the whole circumference of the city was 33 stadia, or nearly four English miles, which is as near as may be the extent indicated by the localities. He then adds that the number of towers in the old wall was 60, the middle wall 40, and the new wall 99.

Water Supply --

(Jerusalem had no natural water supply, unless we so consider the "Fountain of the Virgin," which wells up with an intermittent action from under Ophel. The private citizens had cisterns, which were supplied by the rain from the roofs; and the city had a water supply "perhaps the most complete and extensive ever undertaken by a city," and which would enable it to endure a long siege. There were three aqueducts, a number of pools and fountains, and the temple area was honeycombed with great reservoirs, whose total capacity is estimated at 10,000,000 gallons. Thirty of these reservoirs are described, varying from 25 to 50 feet in depth; and one, call the great Sea , would hold 2,000,000 gallons. These reservoirs and the pools were supplied with water by the rainfall and by the aqueducts. One of these, constructed by Pilate, has been traced for 40 miles, though in a straight line the distance is but 13 miles. It brought water from the spring Elam, on the south, beyond Bethlehem, into the reservoirs under the temple enclosure. --ED.)

Pools and fountains. --

A part of the system of water supply. Outside the walls on the west side were the Upper and Lower Pools of GIHON, the latter close under Zion, the former more to the northwest on the Jaffa road. At the junction of the valleys of Hinnom and Jehoshaphat was ENROGEL, the "Well of Job," in the midst of the kings gardens. Within the walls, immediately north of Zion, was the "Pool of Hezekiah." A large pool existing beneath the temple (referred to in Ecclus. 1:3) was probably supplied by some subterranean aqueduct. The "Kings Pool" was probably identical with the "Fountain of the Virgin," at the southern angle of Moriah. It possesses the peculiarity that it rises and falls at irregular periods; it is supposed to be fed form the cistern below the temple. From this a subterranean channel cut through solid rock leads the water to the pool of SILOAH or SILOAM, which has also acquired the character of being an intermittent fountain. The pool of which tradition has assigned the name of BETHESDA is situated on the north side of Moriah; it is now named Birket Israil .

Burial-grounds. --

The main cemetery of the city seems from an early date to have been where it is still --on the steep slopes of the valley of the Kedron. The tombs of the kings were in the city of David, that is, Mount Zion. The royal sepulchres were probably chambers containing separate recesses for the successive kings.

Gardens. --

The kings gardens of David and Solomon seem to have been in the bottom formed by the confluence of the Kedron and Himmon. ( Nehemiah 3:15 ) The Mount of Olives, as its name, and the names of various places upon it seem to imply, was a fruitful spot. At its foot was situated the garden of Gethsemane. At the time of the final siege the space north of the wall of Agrippa was covered with gardens, groves and plantations of fruit trees, enclosed by hedges and walls; and to level these was one of Titus first operations. We know that the Gennath (i.e. "of gardens") opened on this side of the city.

Gates. --

The following is a complete list of the gates named in the Bible and by Josephus, with the reference to their occurrence:--

Gate of Ephraim. ( 2 Chronicles 25:23 ; Nehemiah 8:16 ; 12:39 ) This is probably the same as the--
Gate of Benjamin. ( Jeremiah 20:2 ; 37:13 ; Zechariah 14:10 ) If so, it was 400 cubits distant from the--
Corner gate. ( 2 Chronicles 25:23 ; 26:9 ; Jeremiah 31:38 ; Zechariah 14:10 )
Gate of Joshua, governor of the city. ( 2 Kings 23:8 )
Gate between the two walls. ( 2 Kings 25:4 ; Jeremiah 39:4 )
Horse gate. ( Nehemiah 3:28 ; 2 Chronicles 23:15 ; Jeremiah 31:40 )
Ravine gate (i.e. opening on ravine of Hinnom). ( 2 Chronicles 26:9 ; Nehemiah 2:13 , 2:15 ; 3:13 )
Fish gate. ( 2 Chronicles 33:14 ; Nehemiah 3:13 ; Zephaniah 1:10 )
Dung gate. ( Nehemiah 2:13 ; 3:13 )
Sheep gate. ( Nehemiah 3:1 , 3:32 ; 12:39 )
East gate. ( Nehemiah 3:29 )
Miphkad. ( Nehemiah 3:31 )
Fountain gate (Siloam?). ( Nehemiah 12:37 )
Water gate. ( Nehemiah 12:37 )
Old Gate. ( Nehemiah 12:39 )
Prison gate. ( Nehemiah 12:39 )
Gate Harsith (perhaps the Sun; Authorized Version East gate). ( Jeremiah 19:2 )
First gate. ( Zechariah 14:10 )
Gate Gennath (gardens). Jos B.J. v. 4, - 4.
Essenes gate. Jos. B.J. 4, - 2.

To these should be added the following gates to the temple: --
Gate Sur, ( 2 Kings 11:6 ) called also gate of foundation. ( 2 Chronicles 23:5 )
Gate of the guard, or behind the guard, ( 2 Kings 11:6 , 11:19 ); called the high gate. ( 2 Kings 15:35 ; 2 Chronicles 23:20 ; 27:3 )
Gate Shallecheth. ( 1 Chronicles 26:16 )

At present the chief gates are --
The Zions gate and the dung gate, in the south wall;
St. Stephens gate and the
golden gate (now walled up), in the east wall;
The Damascus gate and
Herods gate, in the north wall; and
The Jaffa gate, in the west wall.

Population. --

Taking the area of the city enclosed by the two old walls at 750,000 yards, and that enclosed by the wall of Agrippa at 1,500,000 yards, we have 2,250,000 yards for the whole. Taking the population of the old city at the probable number of the one person to 50 yards, we have 15,000 and at the extreme limit of 30 yards we should have 25,000 inhabitants for the old city, and at 100 yards to each individual in the new city about 15,000 more; so that the population of Jerusalem, in its days of greatest prosperity, may have amounted to from 30,000 to 45,000 souls, but could hardly ever have reached 50,000; and assuming that in times of festival one-half was added to this amount, which is an extreme estimate, there may have been 60,000 or 70,000 in the city when Titus came up against it. (Josephus says that at the siege of Jerusalem the population was 3,000,000; but Tacitus statement that it was 600,000 is nearer the truth. This last is certainly within the limits of possibility.

Streets, houses, etc. --

Of the nature of these in the ancient city we have only the most scattered notices. The "east street," ( 2 Chronicles 29:4 ) the "street of the city," i.e. the city of David, ( 2 Chronicles 32:6 ) the "street facing the water gate," ( Nehemiah 8:1 , 8:3 ) or, according to the parallel account in 1 Esdr. 9:38, the "broad place of the temple towards the east;" the "street of the house of God," ( Ezra 10:9 ) the "street of the gate of Ephraim," ( Nehemiah 8:16 ) and the "open place of the first gate toward the east," must have been not "streets," in our sense of the word, so much as the open spaces found in easter towns round the inside of the gates. Streets, properly so called, there were, ( Jeremiah 5:1 ; 11:13 ) etc.; but the name of only one, "the bakers street," ( Jeremiah 37:21 ) is preserved to us. The Via Dolorosa, or street of sorrows, is a part of the street thorough which Christ is supposed to have been led on his way to his crucifixion. To the houses we have even less clue; but there is no reason to suppose that in either houses or streets the ancient Jerusalem differed very materially from the modern. No doubt the ancient city did not exhibit that air of mouldering dilapidation which is now so prominent there. The whole of the slopes south of the Haram area (the ancient Ophel), and the modern Zion, and the west side of the valley of Jehoshaphat, presents the appearance of gigantic mounds of rubbish. In this point at least the ancient city stood in favorable contrast with the modern, but in many others the resemblance must have been strong.

Annals of the city. --

If, as is possible, Salem is the same with Jerusalem, the first mention of Jerusalem is in ( Genesis 14:18 ) about B.C. 2080. It is next mentioned in ( Joshua 10:1 ) B.C. 1451. The first siege appears to have taken place almost immediately after the death of Joshua --cir. 1400 B.C. Judah and Simeon "fought against it and took it, and smote it with the edge of the sword, and set the city on fire." ( Judges 1:8 ) In the fifteen centuries which elapsed between this siege and the siege and destruction of the city by Titus, A.D. 70, the city was besieged no fewer than seventeen times; twice it was razed to the ground, on two other occasions its walls were levelled. In this respect it stands without a parallel in any city, ancient or modern. David captured the city B.C. 1046, and made it his capital, fortified and enlarged it. Solomon adorned the city with beautiful buildings, including the temple, but made no additions to its walls. The city was taken by the Philistines and Arabians in the reign of Jehoram, B.C. 886, and by the Israelites in the reign of Amaziah, B.C. 826. It was thrice taken by Nebuchadnezzar, in the years B.C. 607, 597 and 586, in the last of which it was utterly destroyed. Its restoration commenced under Cyrus, B.C. 538, and was completed under Artaxerxes I., who issued commissions for this purpose to Ezra, B.C. 457, and Nehemiah, B.C. 445. In B.C. 332 it was captured by Alexander the Great. Under the Ptolemies and the Seleucidae the town was prosperous, until Antiochus Epiphanes sacked it, B.C. 170. In consequence of his tyranny, the Jews rose under the Maccabees, and Jerusalem became again independent, and retained its position until its capture by the Romans under Pompey, B.C. 63. The temple was subsequently plundered by Crassus, B.C. 545, and the city by the Parthians, B.C. 40. Herod took up his residence there as soon as he was appointed sovereign, and restored the temple with great magnificence. On the death of Herod it became the residence of the Roman procurators, who occupied the fortress of Antonia. The greatest siege that it sustained, however, was at the hands of the Romans under Titus, when it held out nearly five months, and when the town was completely destroyed, A.D. 70. Hadrian restored it as a Roman colony, A.D. 135, and among other buildings erected a temple of Jupiter Capitolinus on the site of the temple. He gave to it the name of AElia Capitolina, thus combining his own family name with that of the Capitoline Jupiter. The emperor Constantine established the Christian character by the erection of a church on the supposed site of the holy sepulchre, A.D. 336. Justinian added several churches and hospitals about A.D. 532. It was taken by the Persians under Chosroes II in A.D. 614. The dominion of the Christians in the holy city was now rapidly drawing to a close. In A.D. 637 the patriarch Sophronius surrendered to the khalif Omar in person. With the fall of the Abassides the holy city passed into the hands of the Fatimite dynasty, under whom the sufferings of the Christians in Jerusalem reached their height. About the year 1084 it was bestowed upon Ortok, chief of a Turkman horde. It was taken by the Crusaders in 1099, and for eighty-eight years Jerusalem remained in the hand of the Christians. in 1187 it was retaken by Saladin after a siege of several weeks. In 1277 Jerusalem was nominally annexed to the kingdom of Sicily. In 1517 it passed under the sway of the Ottoman sultan Selim I., whose successor Suliman built the present walls of the city in 1542. Mohammed Aly, the pasha of Egypt, took possession of it in 1832; and in 1840, after the bombardment of Acre, it was again restored to the sultan. (Modern Jerusalem , called by the Arabs el-Khuds , is built upon the ruins of ancient Jerusalem. The accumulated rubbish of centuries is very great, being 100 feet deep on the hill of Zion. The modern wall, built in 1542, forms an irregular quadrangle about 2 1/2 miles in circuit, with seven gates and 34 towers. It varies in height from 20 to 60 feet. The streets within are narrow, ungraded, crooked, and often filthy. The houses are of hewn stone, with flat roofs and frequent domes. There are few windows toward the street. The most beautiful part of modern Jerusalem is the former temple area (Mount Moriah), "with its lawns and cypress tress, and its noble dome rising high above the wall." This enclosure, now called Haram esh-Sherif , is 35 acres in extent, and is nearly a mile in circuit. On the site of the ancient temple stands the Mosque of Omar, "perhaps the very noblest specimen of building-art in Asia." "It is the most prominent as well as the most beautiful building in the whole city." The mosque is an octagonal building, each side measuring 66 feet. It is surmounted by a dome, whose top is 170 feet from the ground. The church of the Holy Sepulchre, which is claimed, but without sufficient reason, to be upon the site of Calvary, is "a collection of chapels and altars of different ages and a unique museum of religious curiosities from Adam to Christ." The present number of inhabitants in Jerusalem is variously estimated. Probably Pierottis estimate is very near the truth, --20,330; of whom 5068 are Christians, 7556 Mohammedans (Arabs and Turks), and 7706 Jews. --ED.)


International Standard Bible Encyclopedia



1. In Cuneiform:

The earliest mention of Jerusalem is in the Tell el-Amarna Letters (1450 BC), where it appears in the form Uru-sa-lim; allied with this we have Ur-sa-li-immu on the Assyrian monuments of the 8th century BC. The most ancient Biblical form is yerushalem, shortened in Psalms 76:2 (compare Genesis 14:18) to Salem, but in Massoretic Text we have it vocalized yerushalaim. In Jeremiah 26:18; Esther 2:6; 2 Chronicles 25:1; 32:9 we have yerushalayim, a form which occurs on the Jewish coins of the Revolt and also in Jewish literature; it is commonly used by modern Talmudic Jews.

2. In Hebrew:

The form Hebrew with the ending -aim or -ayim is interpreted by some as being a dual, referring to the upper and lower Jerusalem, but such forms occur in other names as implying special solemnity; such a pronunciation is both local and late.

3. In Greek and Latin:

In the Septuagint we get (Ierousalem), constantly reflecting the earliest and the common Hebrew pronunciation, the initial letter being probably unaspirated; soon, however, we meet with (Hierousalem)--with the aspirate--the common form in Josep hus, and (Hierosoluma) in Macc (Books II through IV), and in Strabo. This last form has been carried over into the Latin writers, Cicero, Pliny, Tacitus and Suetonius. It was replaced in official use for some centuries by Hadrian's Aelia Capitolina, which occurs as late as Jerome, but it again comes into common use in the documents of the Crusades, while Solyma occurs at various periods as a poetic abbreviation. In the New Testament we have (Hierousalem), particularly in the writings of Luke and Paul, and (ta Hierosoluma) elsewhere. The King James Version of 1611 has Ierosalem in the Old Testament and Hierusalem in the New Testament. The form Jerusalem first occurs in French writings of the 12th century.

4. The Meaning of Jerusalem:

With regard to the meaning of the original name there is no concurrence of opinion. The oldest known form, Uru-sa-lim, has been considered by many to mean either the "City of Peace" or the "City of (the god) Salem," but other interpreters, considering the name as of Hebrew origin, interpret it as the "possession of peace" or "foundation of peace." It is one of the ironies of history that a city which in all its long history has seen so little peace and for whose possession such rivers of blood have been shed should have such a possible meaning for its name.

5. Other Names:

Other names for the city occur. For the name Jebus see JESUS. In Isaiah 29:1, occurs the name 'ari'el probably "the hearth of God," and in 1:26 the "city of righteousness." In Psalms 72:16; Jeremiah 32:24; Ezekiel 7:23, we have the term ha`ir, "the city" in contrast to "the land." A whole group of names is connected with the idea of the sanctity of the site; `ir ha-qodhesh, the "holy city" occurs in Isaiah 48:2; 52:1; Nehemiah 11:1, and yerushalayim ha-qedhoshah, "Jerusalem the holy" is inscribed on Simon's coins. In Matthew 4:5; 27:53 we have he hagia polis, "the holy city," and in Philo, Hieropolis, with the same meaning. In Arabic the common name is Beit el Maqdis, "the holy house," or el Muqaddas, "the holy," or the common name, used by the Moslems everywhere today, el Quds, a shortened form of el Quds esh Sheref, "the noble sanctuary." Non-Moslems usually use the Arabic form Yerusalem.


1. Geology:

The geology of the site and environs of Jerusalem is comparatively simple, when studied in connection with that of the land of Palestine as a whole (see GEOLOGY OF PALESTINE). The outstanding feature is that the rocks consist entirely of various forms of limestone, with strata containing flints; there are no primary rocks, no sandstone (such as comes to the surface on the East of the Jordan) and no volcanic rocks. The lime stone formations are in regular strata dipping toward the Southeast, with an angle of about 10 degrees. On the high hills overlooking Jerusalem on the East, Southeast and Southwest there still remain strata of considerable thickness of those chalky limestones of the post-Tertiary period which crown so many hilltops of Palestine, and once covered the whole land. On the "Mount of Olives," for example, occurs a layer of conglomerate limestone known as Nari, or "firestone," and another thicker deposit, known as Ka`kuli, of which two distinct strata can be distinguished. In these layers, especially the latter, occur pockets containing marl or haur, and in both there are bands of flint. Over the actual city's site all this has been denuded long ages ago. Here we have three layers of limestone of varying density very clearly distinguished by all the native builders and masons:

(1) Mizzeh helu, literally, "sweet mizzeh," a hard, reddish-grey layer capable of polish, and reaching in places to a depth of 70 ft. or more. The "holy rock" in the temple-area belongs to this layer, and much of the ancient building stone was of this nature.

(2) Below this is the Melekeh or "royal" layer, which, though not very thick--35 ft. or so--has been of great importance in the history of the city. This rock is peculiar in that when first exposed to the air it is often so soft that it can be cut with a knife, but under the influence of the atmosphere it hardens to make a stone of considerable durability, useful for ordinary buildings. The great importance of this layer, however, lies in the fact that in it have been excavated the hundreds of caverns, cisterns, tombs and aqueducts which honeycomb the city's site.

(3) Under the Melekeh is a Cenomanian limestone of great durability, known as Mizzeh Yehudeh, or "Jewish mizzeh." It is a highly valued building stone, though hard to work. Geologically it is distinguished from Mizzeh helu by its containing ammonites. Characteristically, it is a yellowish-grey stone, sometimes slightly reddish. A variety of a distinctly reddish appearance, known as Mizzeh ahmar, or "red mizzeh," makes a very ornamental stone for columns, tombstones, etc.; it takes a high polish and is sometimes locally known as "marble."

This deep layer, which underlies the whole city, comes to the surface in the Kidron valley, and its impermeability is probably the explanation of the appearance there of the one true spring, the "Virgin's Fount." The water over the site and environs of Jerusalem percolates with ease the upper layer, but is conducted to the surface by this hard layer; the comparatively superficial source of the water of this spring accounts for the poorness of its quality.

2. Climate and Rainfall:

The broad features of the climate of Jerusalem have probably remained the same throughout history, although there is plenty of evidence that there have been cycles of greater and lesser abundance of rain. The almost countless cisterns belonging to all ages upon the site and the long and complicated conduits for bringing water from a distance, testify that over the greater part of history the rainfall must have been, as at present, only seasonal.

As a whole, the climate of Jerusalem may be considered healthy. The common diseases should be largely preventable--under an enlightened government; even the malaria which is so prevalent is to a large extent an importation from the low-lying country, and could be stopped at once, were efficient means taken for destroying the carriers of infection, the abundant Anopheles mosquitoes. On account of its altitude and its exposed position, almost upon the watershed, wind, rain and cold are all more excessive than in the maritime plains or the Jordan valley. Although the winter's cold is severely felt, on account of its coinciding with the days of heaviest rainfall (compare Ezra 10:9), and also because of the dwellings and clothes of the inhabitants being suited for enduring heat more than cold, the actual lowest cold recorded is only 25 degrees F., and frost occurs only on perhaps a dozen nights in an average year. During the rainless summer months the mean temperature rises steadily until August, when it reaches 73,1 degrees F., but the days of greatest heat, with temperature over 100 degrees F. in the shade at times, occur commonly in September. In midsummer the cool northwest breezes, which generally blow during the afternoons and early night, do much to make life healthy. The most unpleasant days occur in May and from the middle of September until the end of October, when the dry southeast winds--the sirocco--blow hot and stifling from over the deserts, carrying with them at times fine dust sufficient in quantity to produce a marked haze in the atmosphere. At such times all vegetation droops, and most human beings, especially residents not brought up under such conditions, suffer more or less from depression and physical discomfort; malarial, "sandfly," and other fevers are apt to be peculiarly prevalent. "At that time shall it be said .... to Jerusalem, A hot wind from the bare heights in the wilderness toward the daughter of my people, not to winnow, nor to cleanse" (Jeremiah 4:11).

During the late summer--except at spells of sirocco--heavy "dews" occur at night, and at the end of September or beginning of October the "former" rains fall--not uncommonly in tropical downpours accompanied by thunder. After this there is frequently a dry spell of several weeks, and then the winter's rain falls in December, January and February. In some seasons an abundant rainfall in March gives peculiar satisfaction to the inhabitants by filling up the cisterns late in the season and by producing an abundant harvest. The average rainfall is about 26 inches, the maximum recorded in the city being 42,95 inches in the season 1877-78, and the minimum being 12,5 inches in 1869-70. An abundant rainfall is not only important for storage, for replenishment of the springs and for the crops, but as the city's sewage largely accumulates in the very primitive drains all through the dry season, it requires a considerable force of water to remove it. Snow falls heavily in some seasons, causing considerable destruction to the badly built roofs and to the trees; in the winter of 1910-11 a fall of 9 inches occurred.

3. The Natural Springs:

There is only one actual spring in the Jerusalem area, and even to this some authorities would deny the name of true spring on account of the comparatively shallow source of its origin; this is the intermittent spring known today as `Ain Umm edition deraj (literally, "spring of the mother of the steps"), called by the native Christians `Ain Sitti Miriam (the "spring of the Lady Mary"), and by Europeans commonly called "The Virgin's Fount." All the archaeological evidence points to this as the original source of attraction of earliest occupants of the site; in the Old Testament this spring is known as GIHON (which see). The water arises in the actual bottom, though apparent west side, of the Kidron valley some 300 yards due South of the south wall of the Charam. The approach to the spring is down two flights of steps, an upper of 16 leading to a small level platform, covered by a modern arch, and a lower, narrower flight of 14 steps, which ends at the mouth of a small cave. The water has its actual source in a long cleft (perhaps 16 ft. long) running East and West in the rocky bottom of the Kidron valley, now many feet below the present surface. The western or higher end of the cleft is at the very entrance of the cave, but most of the water gushes forth from the lower and wider part which lies underneath the steps. When the water is scanty, the women of Siloam creep down into the cavity under the steps and fill their water-skins there; at such times no water at all finds its way into the cave. At the far end of the cave is the opening of that system of ancient tunnel-aqueducts which is described in VI, below. This spring is "intermittent," the water rising rapidly and gushing forth with considerable force, several times in the 24 hours after the rainy season, and only once or twice in the dry. This "intermittent" condition of springs is not uncommon in Palestine, and is explained by the accumulation of the underground water in certain cavities or cracks in the rock, which together make up a reservoir which empties itself by siphon action. Where the accumulated water reaches the bend of the siphon, the overflow commences and continues to run until the reservoir is emptied. Such a phenomenon is naturally attributed to supernatural agency by the ignorant--in this case, among the modern fellahin, to a dragon--and natives, specially Jews, visit the source, even today, at times of its overflow, for healing. Whether this intermittent condition of the fountain is very ancient it is impossible to say, but, as Jerome (Comm. in Esa, 86) speaks of it, it was probably present in New Testament times, and if so we have a strong argument for finding here the "Pool of Bethesda." See BETHESDA.

In ancient times all the water flowed down the open, rocky valley, but at an early period a wall was constructed to bank up the water and convert the source into a pool. Without such an arrangement no water could find its way into the cave and the tunnels. The tunnels, described below (VI), were constructed for the purpose

(1) of reaching the water supply from within the city walls, and

(2) of preventing the enemies of the Jews from getting at the water (2 Chronicles 32:4).

The water of this source, though used for all purposes by the people of Siloam, is brackish to the taste, and contains a considerable percentage of sewage; it is quite unfit for drinking. This condition is doubtless due to the wide distribution of sewage, both intentionally (for irrigation of the gardens) and unintentionally (through leaking sewers, etc.), over the soil overlying the rocks from which the water flows. In earlier times the water was certainly purer, and it is probable, too, that the fountain was more copious, as now hundreds of cisterns imprison the waters which once found their way through the soil to the deep sources of the spring.

The waters of the Virgin's Fount find their way through the Siloam tunnel and out at `Ain Silwan (the "spring" of Siloam), into the Pool of Siloam, and from this source descend into the Kidron valley to water the numerous vegetable gardens belonging to the village of Siloam (see SILOAM).

The second source of water in Jerusalem is the deep well known as Bir Eyyub, "Job's well," which is situated a little below the point where the Kidron valley and Hinnom meet. In all probability it derives its modern name from a legend in the Koran (Sura 38 5,40-41) which narrates that God commanded Job to stamp with his foot, whereupon a spring miraculously burst up. The well, which had been quite lost sight of, was rediscovered by the Crusaders in 1184 AD, and was by them cleaned out. It is 125 ft. deep. The supply of water in this well is practically inexhaustible, although the quality is no better than that of the "Virgin's Fount"; after several days of heavy rain the water overflows underground and bursts out a few yards lower down the valley as a little stream. It continues to run for a few days after a heavy fall of rain is over, and this "flowing Kidron" is a great source of attraction to the native residents of Jerusalem, who pour forth from the city to enjoy the rare sight of running water. Somewhere in the neighborhood of Bir Eyyub must have lain `En-Rogel, but if that were once an actual spring, its source is now buried under the great mass of rubbish accumulated here (see EN-ROGEL).

Nearly 600 yards South of Bir Eyyub is a small gravelly basin where, when the Bir Eyyub overflows, a small spring called `Ain el Lozeh (the "spring of the almond") bursts forth. It is not a true spring, but is due to some of the water of Job's well which finds its way along an ancient rock-cut aqueduct on the west side of the Wady en Nar, bursting up here.

The only other possible site of a spring in the Jerusalem area is the Chammam esh Shefa, "the bath of healing." This is an underground rock-basin in the Tyropeon valley, within the city walls, in which water collects by percolation through the debris of the city. Though once a reservoir with probably rock-cut channels conducting water to it, it is now a deep well with arches erected over it at various periods, as the rubbish of the city gradually accumulated through the centuries. There is no evidence whatever of there being any natural fountain, and the water is, in the dry season, practically pure sewage, though used in a neighboring Turkish bath.

G.A. Smith thinks that the JACKAL'S WELL (which see) mentioned by Nehemiah (2:13), which must have been situated in the Valley of Hinnom, may possibly have been a temporary spring arising there for a few years in consequence of an earthquake, but it is extremely likely that any well sunk then would tap water flowing a long the bed of the valley. There is no such "spring" or "well" there today.


Modern Jerusalem occupies a situation defined geographically as 31 degrees 46 feet 45 inches North latitude., by 35 degrees 13 feet 25 inches East longitude. It lies in the midst of a bare and rocky plateau, the environs being one of the most stony and least fruitful districts in the habitable parts of Palestine, with shallow, gray or reddish soil and many outcrops of bare limestone. Like all the hill slopes with a southeasterly aspect, it is so thoroughly exposed to the full blaze of the summer sun that in its natural condition the site would be more or less barren. Today, however, as a result of diligent cultivation and frequent watering, a considerable growth of trees and shrubs has been produced in the rapidly extending suburbs. The only fruit tree which reaches perfection around Jerusalem is the olive.

1. The Mountains Around:

The site of Jerusalem is shut in by a rough triangle of higher mountain ridges: to the West runs the main ridge, or water parting, of Judea, which here makes a sweep to the westward. From this ridge a spur runs Southeast and East, culminating due East of the city in the MOUNT OF OLIVES (which see), nearly 2,700 ft. above sea-level and about 300 ft. above the mean level of the ancient city. Another spur, known as Jebel Deir abu Tor, 2,550 ft. high, runs East from the plateau of el Buqei`a and lies Southwest of the city; it is the traditional "Hill of Evil Counsel." The city site is thus dominated on all sides by these higher ranges--"the mountains (that) are round about Jerus" (Psalms 125:2)--so that while on the one hand the ancient city was hidden, at any considerable distance, from any direction except the Southeast, it is only through this open gap toward the desert and the mountains of Moab that any wide outlook is obtainable. This strange vision of wilderness and distant mountain wall--often of exquisite loveliness in the light of the setting sun--must all through the ages have been the most familiar and the most potent of scenic influences to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

2. The Valleys:

Within the enfolding hills the city's proper site is demarked by two main valleys. That on the West and Southwest commences in a hollow occupied by the Moslem cemetery around the pool Birket Mamilla. The valley runs due East toward the modern Jaffa Gate, and there bends South, being known in this upper part of its course as the Wady el Mes. In this southern course it is traversed by a great dam, along which the modern Bethlehem road runs, which converts a large area of the valley bed into a great pool, the Birket es Sultan. Below this the valley--under the name of Wady er Rabadi--bends Southeast, then East, and finally Southeast again, until near Bir Eyyub it joins the western valley to form the Wady en Nar, 670 ft. below its origin. This valley has been very generally identified as the Valley of Hinnom (see HINNOM, VALLEY OF.)

The eastern valley takes a wider sweep. Commencing high up in the plateau to the North of the city, near the great water-parting, it descends as a wide and open valley in a southeasterly direction until, where it is crossed by the Great North Road, being here known as Wady el Joz (the "Valley of the Walnuts"), it turns more directly East. It gradually curves to the South, and as it runs East of the city walls, it receives the name of Wady Sitti Miriam (the "Valley of the Lady Mary"). Below the Southeast corner of the temple-area, near the traditional "Tomb of Absalom," the valley rapidly deepens and takes a direction slightly to the West of South. It passes the "Virgin's Fount," and a quarter of a mile lower it is joined by el Wad from the North, and a little farther on by the Wady er Rababi from the West. South of Bir Eyyub, the valley formed by their union is continued under the name of Wady en Nar to the Dead Sea. This western valley is that commonly known as the Brook Kidron, or, more shortly, the "Brook" (hachal), or ravine (see KIDRON), but named from the 5th century onward by Christians the Valley of Jehoshaphat (see JEHOSHAPHAT, VALLEY OF). The rocky tongue of land enclosed between these deep ravines, an area, roughly speaking, a little over one mile long by half a mile wide, is further subdivided into a number of distinct hills by some shallower valleys. The most prominent of these--indeed the only one noticeable to the superficial observer today--is the great central valley known to modern times by the single name el Wad, "the valley." It commences in a slight depression of the ground a little North of the modern "Damascus Gate," and after entering the city at this gate it rapidly deepens--a fact largely disguised today by the great accumulation of rubbish in its course. It traverses the city with the Charam to its east, and the Christian and Moslem quarters on rapidly rising ground to its west. Its course is observed near the Babylonian es Silseleh, where it is crossed by an ancient causeway, but farther South the valley reappears, having the walls of the Charam (near the "wailing place" and "Robinson's arch") on the East, and steep cliffs crossed by houses of the Jewish quarter on the West. It leaves the city at the "Dung Gate," and passes with an open curve to the East, until it reaches the Pool of Siloam, below' which it merges in the Wady Sitti Miriam. This is the course of the main valley, but a branch of great importance in the ancient topography of the city starts some 50 yards to the West of the modern Jaffa Gate and runs down the Suwaikat Allun generally known to travelers as "David's Street," and thus easterly, along the Tarik bab es Silseleh, until it merges in the main valley. The main valley is usually considered to be the Tyropeon, or "Cheesemongers' Valley" of Josephus, but some writers have attempted to confine the name especially to this western arm of it.

Another interior valley, which is known rather by the rock contours, than by surface observations, being largely filled up today, cuts diagonally across the Northeast corner of the modern city. It has no modern name, though it is sometimes called "St. Anne's Valley." It arises in the plateau near "Herod's Gate," known as es Sahra, and entering the city about 100 yards to the East of that gate, runs South-Southeast., and leaves the city between the Northeast angle of the Charam and the Golden Gate, joining the Kidron valley farther Southeast. The Birket Israel runs across the width of this valley, which had far more influence in determining the ancient topography of the city than has been popularly recognized. There is an artificially made valley between the Charam and the buildings to its north, and there is thought by many to be a valley between the Southeast hill, commonly called "Ophel" and the temple-area. Such, then, are the valleys, great and small, by which the historic hills on which the city stood are defined. All of them, particularly in their southern parts, were considerably deeper in ancient times, and in places the accumulated debris is 80 ft. or more. All of them were originally torrent beds, dry except immediately after heavy rain. The only perennial outflow of water is the scanty and intermittent stream which overflows from the Pool of Siloam, and is used to irrigate the gardens in the Wady Sitti Miriam.

3. The Hills:

The East and West valleys isolate a roughly quadrilateral tongue of land running from Northwest-West to South-Southeast, and tilted so as to face Southeast. This tongue is further subdivided by el Wad into two long ridges, which merge into each other in the plateau to the North. The western ridge has its actual origin considerably North of the modern wall, being part of the high ground lying between the modern Jaffa road to the West, and the commencement of the Kidron valley to the East. Within the city walls it rises as high as 2,581 ft. near the northwestern corner. It is divided by the west branch of the Tyropeon valley into two parts: a northern part--the northwestern hill--on which is situated today the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the greater part of the "Christian quarter" of the city, and a southern hill--the southwestern--which is connected with the northwestern hill by but a narrow saddle--50 yards wide--near the Jaffa Gate. This hill sustains the citadel (the so-called "Tower of David"), the barracks and the Armenian quarter within the walls, and the Coenaculum and adjacent buildings outside the walls. This hill is from 2,500 to 2,350 ft. high along its summit, but drops rapidly on its southwestern, southern and southeastern sides. In its central part it falls much more gently toward the eastern hill across the now largely filled valley el Wad.

The eastern ridge may be reckoned as beginning at the rocky hill el-Edhemiyeh--popularly known as Gordon's Calvary--but the wide trench made here by quarrying somewhat obscures this fact. The ridge may for convenience be regarded as presenting three parts, the northeastern, central or central-eastern, and southeastern summits. The northeastern hill within the modern wall supports the Moslem quarter, and rises in places to a height of over 2,500 ft.; it narrows to a mere neck near the "Ecce Homo" arch, where it is joined to the barracks, on the site of the ancient Antonia. Under the present surface it is here separated from the temple summit by a deep rocky trench.

The central, or central-eastern, summit is that appearing as es Sakhra, the sacred temple rock, which is 2,404 ft. high. This is the highest point from which the ground rapidly falls East, West, and South, but the natural contours of the adjacent ground are much obscured by the great substructures which have been made to sustain the temple platform.

The sloping, southeastern, hill, South of the temple area appears today, at any rate, to have a steady fall of from 2,350 ft. just South of the Charam southern wall to a little over 2,100 ft. near the Pool of Siloam. It is a narrow ridge running in a somewhat curved direction, with a summit near 200 ft. above the Kidron and 100 ft. above the bed of the Tyropeon. In length it is not more than 600 yards, in width, at its widest, only 150 yards, but its chief feature, its natural strength, is today greatly obscured on account of the rubbish which slopes down its sides and largely fills up its surrounding valleys. In earlier times, at least three of its sides were protected by deep valleys, and probably on quite two-thirds of its circumference its summit was surrounded by natural rocky scarps. According to Professor Guthe, this hill is divided from the higher ground to the North by a depression 12 ft. deep and 30-50 yards wide, but this has not been confirmed by other observers. The city covering so hilly a site as this must ever have consisted, as it does today, of houses terraced on steep slopes' with stairways for streets.


From the foregoing description of the "natural site," it will be seen that we have to deal with 5 natural subdivisions or hills, two on the western and three on the eastern ridges.

1. Description of Josephus:

In discussing the topography it is useful to commence with the description of Josephus, wherein he gives to these 5 areas the names common in his day (BJ, V, iv, 1,2). He says: "The city was built upon two hills which are opposite to one another and have a valley to divide them asunder .... Now the Valley of the Cheesemongers, as it was called, and was that which distinguished the hill of the upper city from that of the lower, extended as far as Siloam" (ibid., V, iv, 1). Here we get the first prominent physical feature, the bisection of the city-site into two main hills. Farther on, however, in the same passage--one, it must be admitted, of some obscurity--Josephus distinguishes 5 distinct regions:

(1) The Upper City or Upper Market Place:
(The hill) "which sustains the upper city is much higher and in length more direct. Accordingly, it was called the citadel (phrourion) of King David .... but it is by us called the Upper Market Place." This is without dispute the southwestern hill.

(2) Akra and Lower City:
"The other hill, which was called Akra, and sustains the lower city, was double-curved" (amphikurtos). The description can apply only to the semicircular shape of the southeastern hill, as viewed from the "upper city." These names, "Akra" and "Lower City," are, with reservations, therefore, to be applied to the southeastern hill.

(3) The Temple Hill:
Josephus' description here is curious, on account of its indefiniteness, but there can be no question as to which hill he intends. He writes: "Over against this is a third hill, but naturally lower than the Akra and parted formerly from the other by a fiat valley. However, in those times when the Hasmoneans reigned, they did away with this valley, wishing to connect the city with the temple; and cutting down the summit of the Akra, they made it lower, so that the temple might be visible over it." Comparison with other passages shows that this "third hill" is the central-eastern--the "Temple Hill."

(4) Bezetha:
"It was Agrippa who encompassed the parts added to the old city with this wall (i.e. the third wall) which had been all naked before; for as the city grew more populous, it gradually crept beyond its old limits, and those parts of it that stood northward of the Temple, and joined that hill to the city, made it considerably larger, and occasioned that hill which is in number the fourth, and is called `Bezetha,' to be inhabited also. It lies over against the tower Antonia, but is divided from it by a deep valley, which was dug on purpose. .... This new-built part of the city was called `Bezetha' in our language, which, if interpreted in the Greek language, may be called the `New City.' " This is clearly the northeastern hill.

(5) The Northern Quarter of the City:
From the account of the walls given by Josephus, it is evident that the northern part of his "first wall" ran along the northern edge of the southwestern hill; the second wall enclosed the inhabited part of the northwestern hill. Thus Josephus writes: "The second wall took its beginning from the gate which they called Gennath in the first wall, and enclosing, the northern quarter only reached to the Antonia." This area is not described as a separate hill, as the inhabited area, except on the South, was defined by no natural valleys, and besides covering the northwestern hill, must have extended into the Tyropeon valley.

2. Summary of the Names of the Five Hills:

Here then we have Josephus' names for these five districts:

(1) Southwestern Hill:
Southwestern Hill, "Upper City" and "Upper Market Place"; also the Summary Phrourion, or "fortress of David." From the 4th century AD, this hill has also been known as "Zion," and on it today is the so-called "Tower of David," built on the foundations of two of Herod's great towers.

(2) Northwestern Hill:
"The northern quarter of the city." This district does not appear to have had any other name in Old Testament or New Testament, though some of the older authorities would place the "Akra" here (see infra). Today it is the "Christian quarter" of Jerusalem, which centers round the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

(3) Northeastern Hill:
"Bezetha" or "New City," even now a somewhat sparsely inhabited area, has no name in Biblical literature.

(4) Central-eastern Hill:
The "third hill" of Josephus, clearly the site of the Temple which, as Josephus says (BJ, V, v), "was built upon a strong hill." In earlier times it was the "threshing-floor of Araunah the Jebusite." On the question whether it has any claims to be the Moriah of Genesis 22:2, as it is called in 2 Chronicles 3:1, see MORIAH. The temple hill is also in many of the Hebrew writings called Zion, on which point see ZION.

(5) Southeastern Hill:
This Josephus calls "Akra" and "Lower City," but while on the one hand these names require some elucidation, there are other names which have at one period or another come to be applied to this hill, namely, "City of David," "Zion" and "Ophel." These names for this hill we shall now deal with in order.

3. The Akra:

In spite of the very definite description of Josephus, there has been considerable difference of opinion regarding the situation of the "Akra." Various parts of the northwestern, the northeastern, the southeastern hills, and even the central-eastern itself, have been suggested by earlier authorities, but instead of considering the various arguments, now largely out of date, for other proposed sites, it will be better to deal with the positive arguments for the southeastern hill. Josephus states that in his day the term "Akra" was applied to the southeastern hill, but in references to the earlier history it is clear that the Akra was not a whole hill, but a definite fortress (akra = "fortress").

(1) It was situated on the site, or on part of the site, which was considered in the days of the Maccabees to have been the "City of David." Antiochus Epiphanes (168 BC), after destroying Jerusalem, "fortitled the city of David with a great and strong wall, with strong towers and it became unto them an Akra" (1 Macc 1:33-36). The formidable fortress--known henceforth as "the Akra"--became a constant menace to the Jews, until at length, in 142 BC, it was captured by Simon, who not only razed the whole fortress, but, according to Josephus (Ant., XIII, vi, 7; B J, V, iv, 1), actually cut down the hill on which it stood. He says that "they all, labouring zealously, demolished the hill, and ceasing not from the work night and day for three whole years, brought it to a level and even slope, so that the Temple became the highest of all after the Akra and the hill upon which it was built had been removed" (Ant., XIII, vi, 7). The fact that at the time of Josephus this hill was evidently lower than the temple hill is in itself sufficient argument against any theory which would place the Akra on the northwestern or southwestern hills.

(2) The Akra was close to the temple (1 Macc 13:52), and from its walls the garrison could actually overlook it (1 Macc 14:36). Before the hill was cut down it obscured the temple site (same place) .

(3) It is identified by Josephus as forming part, at least, of the lower city, which (see below) bordered upon the temple (compare BJ, I, i, 4; V, iv, 1; vi, 1).

(4) The Septuagint identifies the Akra with Millo (2 Samuel 5:9; 1 Kings 9:15-24; 2 Chronicles 32:5).

Allowing that the original Akra of the Syrians was on the southeastern hill, it is still a matter of some difficulty to determine whereabouts it stood, especially as, if the statements of Josephus are correct, the natural configuration of the ground has been greatly altered. The most prominent point upon the southeastern hill, in the neighborhood of Gihon, appears to have been occupied by the Jebusite fortress of ZION (which see), but the site of the Akra can hardly be identical with this, for this became the "City of David," and here were the venerated tombs of David and the Judean kings, which must have been destroyed if this hill was, as Josephus states, cut down. On this and other grounds we must look for a site farther north. Sir Charles Watson (PEFS, 1906, 1907) has produced strong topographical and literary arguments for placing it where the al Aqsa mosque is today; other writers are more inclined to put it farther south, somewhere in the neighborhood of the massive tower discovered by Warren on the "Ophel" wall (see MILLO). If the account of Josephus, written two centuries after the events, is to be taken as literal, then Watson's view is the more probable.

4. The Lower City:

Josephus, as we have seen, identified the Akra of his day with the Lower City. This latter is not a name occurring in the Bible because, as will be shown, the Old Testament name for this part was "City of David." That by Lower City Josephus means the southeastern hill is shown by many facts. It is actually the lowest part of the city, as compared with the "Upper City," Temple Hill and the Bezetha; it is, as Josephus describes, separated from the Upper City by a deep valley--the Tyropeon; this southeastern hill is "double-curved," as Josephus describes, and lastly several passages in his writings show that the Lower City was associated with the Temple on the one end and the Pool of Siloam at the other (compare Ant, XIV, xvi, 2; BJ, II, xvii, 5; IV, ix, 12; VI, vi, 3; vii, 2).

In the wider sense the "Lower City" must have included, not only the section of the city covering the southeastern hill up to the temple precincts, where were the palaces (BJ, V, vi, 1; VI, vi, 3), and the homes of the well-to-do, but also that in the valley of the Tyropeon from Siloam up to the "Council House," which was near the northern "first wall" (compare BJ, V, iv, 2), a part doubtless inhabited by the poorest.

5. City of David and Zion:

It is clear (2 Samuel 5:7; 1 Chronicles 11:5) that the citadel "Zion" of the Jebusites became the "City of David," or as G. A. Smith calls it, "David's Burg," after its capture by the Hebrews. The arguments for placing "Zion" on the southeastern hill are given elsewhere (see ZION), but a few acts relevant especially to the "City of David" may be mentioned here: the capture of the Jebusite city by means of the gutter (2 Samuel 5:8), which is most reasonably explained as "Warren's Shaft" (see VII); the references to David's halt on his flight (2 Samuel 15:23), and his sending Solomon to Gihon to be crowned (1 Kings 1:33), and the common expression "up," used in describing the transference of the Ark from the City of David to the Temple Hill (1 Kings 8:1; 2 Chronicles 5:2; compare 1 Kings 9:24), are all consistent with this view. More convincing are the references to Hezekiah's aqueduct which brought the waters of Gihon "down on the west side of the city of David" (2 Chronicles 32:30); the mention of the City of David as adjacent to the Pool of Shelah (or Shiloah; compare Isaiah 8:6), and the "king's garden" in Nehemiah 3:15, and the position of the Fountain Gate in this passage and Nehemiah 12:37; and the statement that Manasseh built "an outer wall to the City of David, on the west side of Gihon" in the nachal, i.e. the Kidron valley (2 Chronicles 33:14).

The name appears to have had a wider significance as the city grew. Originally "City of David" was only the name of the Jebusite fort, but later it became equivalent to the whole southeastern hill. In the same way, Akra was originally the name of the Syrian fort, but the name became extended to the whole southeastern hill. Josephus looks upon "City of David" and "Akra" as synonymous, and applies to both the name "Lower City." For the names Ophel and Ophlas see OPHEL.


During the last hundred years explorations and excavations of a succession of engineers and archaeologists have furnished an enormous mass of observations for the understanding of the condition of ancient Jerusalem. Some of the more important are as follows: In 1833 Messrs. Bonorni, Catherwood and Arundale made a first thorough survey of the Charam (temple-area), a work which was the foundation of all subsequent maps for over a quarter of a century.

1. Robinson:

In 1838, and again in 1852, the famous American traveler and divine, E. Robinson, D.D., visited the land as the representative of an American society, and made a series of brilliant topographical investigations of profound importance to all students of the Holy Land, even today.

In 1849 Jerusalem was surveyed by Lieuts. Aldrich and Symonds of the Royal Engineers, and the data acquired were used for a map constructed by Van de Vilde and published by T. Tobler. In 1857 an American, J.T. Barclay, published another map of Jerusalem and its environs "from actual and minute survey made on the spot." In 1860-1863 De Vogue in the course of some elaborate researches in Syria explored the site of the sanctuary.

2. Wilson and the Palestine Exploration Fund (1865):

In 1864-65 a committee was formed in London to consider the sanitary condition of Jerusalem, especially with a view to furnishing the city with a satisfactory water-supply, and Lady Burdett-Coutts gave 500 pounds toward a proper survey of Jerusalem and its environs as a preliminary step. Captain (later Lieutenant-General Sir Charles) Wilson, R.E., was lent by the Ordnance Survey Department of Great Britain for the purpose. The results of this survey, and of certain tentative excavations and observations made at the same time, were so encouraging that in 1865 "The Palestine Exploration Fund" was constituted, "for the purpose of investigating the archaeology, geography, geology, and natural history of the Holy Land."

3. Warren and Conder:

During 1867-70 Captain (later Lieutenant-General Sir Charles) Warren, R.E., carried out a series of most exciting and original excavations all over the site of Jerusalem, especially around the Charam. During 1872-75 Lieutenant (later Lieutenant-Colonel) Conder, R.E., in the course of the great survey of Western Palestine, made further contributions to our knowledge of the Holy City.

4. Maudslay:

In 1875 Mr. Henry Maudslay, taking advantage of the occasion of the rebuilding of "Bishop Gobat's Boys' School," made a careful examination of the remarkable rock cuttings which are now more or less incorporated into the school buildings, and made considerable excavations, the results being described in PEFS (April, 1875).

In 1881 Professor Guthe made a series of important excavations on the southeastern hill, commonly called "Ophel," and also near the Pool of Siloam; his reports were published in ZDPV, 1882.

5. Schick:

The same year (1881), the famous Siloam inscription was discovered and was first reported by Herr Baurath Schick, a resident in Jerusalem who from 1866 until his death in 1901 made a long series of observations of the highest importance on the topography of Jerusalem. He had unique opportunities for scientifically examining the buildings in the Charam, and the results of his study of the details of that locality are incorporated in his wonderful Temple model. He also made a detailed report of the ancient aqueducts of the city. Most important of all were the records he so patiently and faithfully kept of the rock levels in all parts of the city's site whenever the digging of foundations for buildings or other excavations gave access to the rock. His contributions to the PEF and ZDPV run into hundreds of articles.

6. Clermont-Ganneau:

M. Clermont-Ganneau, who was resident in Jerusalem in the French consular service, made for many years, from 1880 onward, a large number of acute observations on the archaeology of Jerusalem and its environs, many of which were published by the PEF. Another name honored in connection with the careful study of the topography of Jerusalem over somewhat the same period is that of Selah Merrill, D.D., for many years U.S. consul in Jerusalem.

7. Bliss and Dickie:

In 1894-97 the Palestine Exploration Fund conducted an elaborate series of excavations with a view to determining in particular the course of the ancient southern walls under the direction of Mr. T.J. Bliss (son of Daniel Bliss, D.D., then president of the Syrian Protestant College, Beirut), assisted by Mr. A.C. Dickie as architect. After picking up the buried foundations of walls at the southeastern corner where "Maudslay's scarp" was exposed in the Protestant cemetery, Bliss and Dickie followed them all the way to the Pool of Siloam, across the Tyropeon and on to "Ophel"--and also in other directions. Discoveries of great interest were also made in the neighborhood of the Pool of Siloam (see SILOAM).

Following upon these excavations a number of private investigations have been made by the Augustinians in a large estate they have acquired on the East side of the traditional hill of Zion.

In 1909-1911 a party of Englishmen, under Captain the Honorable M. Parker, made a number of explorations with very elaborate tunnels upon the hill of Ophel, immediately above the Virgin's Fount. In the course of their work, they cleaned out the whole Siloam aqueduct, finding some new passages; they reconstructed the Siloam Pool, and they completed Warren's previous investigation in the neighborhood of what has been known as "Warren's Shaft."

8. Jerusalem Archaeological Societies:

There are several societies constantly engaged in observing new facts connected with the topography of ancient Jerusalem, notably the School of Archaeology connected with the University of Stephens, under the Dominicans; the American School of Archaeology; the German School of Biblical Archaeology under Professor Dalman, and the Palestine Exploration Fund.


1. The Existing Walls:

Although the existing walls of Jerusalem go back in their present form to but the days of Suleiman the Magnificent, circa 1542 AD, their study is an essential preliminary to the understanding of the ancient walls. The total circuit of the modern walls is 4,326 yards, or nearly 2 1/8 miles, their average height is 35 ft., and they have altogether 35 towers and 8 gates--one of which is walled up. They make a rough square, with the four sides facing the cardinal points of the compass. The masonry is of various kinds, and on every side there are evidences that the present walls are a patchwork of many periods. The northern wall, from near the northwestern angle to some distance East of the "Damascus Gate," lies parallel with, though somewhat inside of, an ancient fosse, and it and the gate itself evidently follow ancient lines. The eastern and western walls, following as they do a general direction along the edges of deep valleys, must be more or less along the course of earlier walls. The eastern wall, from a little south of Stephen's Gate to the southeastern angle, contains many ancient courses, and the general line is at least as old as the time of Herod the Great; the stretch of western wall from the so-called "Tower of David" to the southwestern corner is certainly along an ancient line and has persisted through very many centuries. This line of wall was allowed to remain undestroyed when Titus leveled the remainder. At the northwestern angle are some remains known as Kala`at Jalud ("Goliath's castle"), which, though largely medieval, contain a rocky core and some masonry of Herodian times, which are commonly accepted as the relics of the lofty tower Psephinus.

2. Wilson's Theory:

The course of the southern wall has long been a difficulty; it is certainly not the line of wall before Titus; it has none of the natural advantages of the western and eastern walls, and there are no traces of any great rock fosse, such as is to be found on the north. The eastern end is largely built upon the lower courses of Herod's southern wall for his enlarged temple-platform, and in it are still to be found walled up the triple, single and double gates which lead up to the Temple. The irregular line followed by the remainder of this wall has not until recent times received any explanation. Sir Charles Wilson (Golgotha and the Holy Sepulchre) suggests the probable explanation that the line of wall from the southwestern to the "Zion Gate" was determined by the legionary camp which stood on the part of the city now covered by the barracks and the Armenian quarter. Allowing that the remains of the first wall on the North and West were utilized for this fortified camp (from 70-132 AD), and supposing the camp to have occupied the area of 50 acres, as was the case with various European Roman camps, whose remains are known, the southern camp wall would have run along the line of the existing southern walls. This line of fortification having been thus selected appears to have been followed through the greater part of the succeeding centuries down to modern times. The line connecting the two extremities of the southern wall, thus determined by the temple-platform and legionary camp, respectively, was probably that first followed by the southern wall of Hadrian's city AElia.

3. The Existing Gate:

Of the 8 existing city gates, on the west side there is but one, Babylonian el Khulil (the "Gate of Hebron"), commonly known to travelers as the Jaffa Gate. It is probably the site of several earlier gates. On the North there are 3 gates, Babylonian Abd'ul Kamid (named after the sultan who made it) or the "New Gate"; Babylonian el `amud ("Gate of the Columns"), now commonly called the "Damascus Gate," but more in ancient times known as "St. Stephen's Gate," and clearly, from the existing remains, the site of an earlier gateway; and, still farther east, the Babylonian es Sahirah ("Gate of the Plain"), or "Herod's Gate." On the east side the only open gate is the Babylonian el `Asbat ("Gate of the Tribes"), commonly called by native Christians, Babylonian Sitti Miriam ("Gate of the Lady Mary"), but in European guide-books called "St. Stephen's Gate." A little farther South, near the northeastern corner of the Charam, is the great walled-up Byzantine Gate, known as Babylonian edition Dahariyeh ("Gate of the Conqueror"), but to Europeans as the "Golden Gate." This structure has been variously ascribed to Justinian and Heraclius, but there are massive blocks which belong to a more ancient structure, and early Christian tradition places the "Beautiful Gate" of the Temple here. In the southern wall are two city gates; one, insignificant and mean, occupies the center of el Wad and is known as Babylonian el Mugharibeh ("Gate of the Moors"), and to Europeans as the "Dung Gate"; the other, which is on the crown of the western hill, traditional Zion, is the important Babylonian Nebi Daoud ("Gate of the Prophet David"), or the "Zion Gate."

All these gates assumed their present form at the time of the reconstruction of the walls by Suleiman the Magnificent, but the more important ones occupy the sites of earlier gates. Their names have varied very much even since the times of the Crusaders. The multiplicity of names for these various gates--they all have two or three today--and their frequent changes are worth noticing in connection with the fact that in the Old Testament history some of the gates appear to have had two or more names.

As has been mentioned, the course of the present southern wall is the result of Roman reconstruction of the city since the time of Titus. To Warren, Guthe, Maudslay and Bliss we owe a great deal of certain knowledge of its more ancient course. These explorers have shown that in all the pre-Roman period (and at least one period since) the continuation southward of the western and eastern ridges, as well as the wide valley between--an area now but sparsely inhabited--was the site of at once the most crowded life, and the most stirring scenes in the Hebrew history of the city. The sanctity of the Holy Sepulchre has caused the city life to center itself more and more around that sanctuary, thereby greatly confusing the ancient topography for many centuries.

4. Buried Remains of Earlier Walls:

(1) Warren's excavations revealed:

(a) a massive masonry wall 46 ft. East of the Golden Gate, which curved toward the West at its northern end, following the ancient rock contours at this spot. It is probable that this was the eastern wall of the city in pre-Herodian times. Unfortunately the existence of a large Moslem cemetery outside the eastern wall of the Charam precludes the possibility of any more excavations in this neighborhood.

(b) More important remains in the southeastern hill, commonly known as "Ophel." Here commencing at the southeastern angle of the Charam, Warren uncovered a wall 14 1/2 ft. thick running South for 90 ft. and then Southwest along the edge of the hill for 700 ft. This wall, which shows at least two periods of construction, abuts on the sanctuary wall with a straight joint. Along its course were found 4 small towers with a projection of 6 ft. and a face from 22 to 28 ft. broad, and a great corner tower projecting 41 1/2 ft. from the wall and with a face 80 ft. broad. The face of this great tower consists of stones one to two ft. high and 2 or 3 ft. long; it is founded upon rock and stands to the height of 66 ft. Warren considers that this may be ha-mighdal ha-yotse' or "tower that standeth out" of Nehemiah 3:25.

(2) In 1881 Professor Guthe picked up fragmentary traces of this city-wall farther south, and in the excavations of Captain Parker (1910-1911) further fragments of massive walls and a very ancient gate have been found.

(3) Maudslay's excavations were on the southwestern hill, on the site occupied by "Bishop Gobat's School" for boys, and in the adjoining Anglo-German cemetery. The school is built over a great mass of scarped rock 45 ft. square, which rises to a height of 20 ft. from a platform which surrounds it and with which it is connected by a rock-cut stairway; upon this massive foundation must have stood a great tower at what was in ancient times the southwestern corner of the city. From this point a scarp facing westward was traced for 100 ft. northward toward the modern southwestern angle of the walls, while a rock scarp, in places 40 ft. high on the outer or southern side and at least 14 ft. on the inner face, was followed for 250 ft. eastward until it reached another great rock projection with a face of 43 ft. Although no stones were found in situ, it is evident that such great rock cuttings must have supported a wall and tower of extraordinary strength, and hundreds of massive squared stones belonging to this wall are now incorporated in neighboring buildings.

(4) Bliss and Dickie's work commenced at the southeastern extremity of Maudslay's scarp, where was the above-mentioned massive projection for a tower, and here were found several courses of masonry still in situ. This tower appears to have been the point of divergence of two distinct lines of wall, one of which ran in a direction Northeast, skirting the edge of the southeastern hill, and probably joined the line of the modern walls at the ruined masonry tower known as Burj el Kebrit, and another running Southeast down toward the Pool of Siloam, along the edge of the Wady er Rababi (Hinnom). The former of these walls cannot be very ancient, because of the occurrence of late Byzantine moldings in its foundations. The coenaculum was included in the city somewhere about 435-450 AD (see IX, 55), and also in the 14th century. Bliss considers it probable that this is the wall built in 1239 By Frederick II, and it is certainly that depicted in the map of Marino Sanuto (1321 AD). Although these masonry remains are thus comparatively late, there were some reasons for thinking that at a much earlier date a wall took a similar direction along the edge of the southwestern hill; and it is an attractive theory, though unsupported by any very definite archaeological evidence, that the wall of Solomon took also this general line. The wall running Southeast from the tower, along the edge of the gorge of Hinnom, is historically of much greater importance. Bliss's investigations showed that here were remains belonging to several periods, covering altogether considerably over a millennium. The upper line of wall was of fine masonry, with stones 1 ft. by 3 ft. in size, beautifully jointed and finely dressed; in some places this wall was founded upon the remains of the lower wall, in others a layer of debris intervened. It is impossible that this upper wall can be pre-Roman, and Bliss ascribes it to the Empress Eudoxia (see IX, 55). The lower wall rested upon the rock and showed at least 3 periods of construction. In the earliest the stones had broad margins and were carefully jointed, without mortar. This may have been the work of Solomon or one of the early kings of Judah. The later remains are evidently of the nature of repairs, and include the work of the later Judean kings, and of Nehemiah and of all the wall-repairers, down to the destruction in 70 AD. At somewhat irregular intervals along the wall were towers of very similar projection and breadth to those found on Warren's wall on the southeastern hill. The wall foundations were traced--except for an interval where they passed under a Jewish cemetery--all the way to the mouth of the Tyropeon valley. The upper wall disappeared (the stones having been all removed for later buildings) before the Jewish cemetery was reached.

5. The Great Dam of the Tyropeon:

During most periods, if not indeed in all, the wall was carried across the mouth of the Tyropeon valley upon a great dam of which the massive foundations still exist under the ground, some 50 ft. to the East of the slighter dam which today supports the Birket el Kamra (see SILOAM). This ancient dam evidently once supported a pool in the mouth of the Tyropeon, and it showed evidences of having undergone buttressing and other changes and repairs. Although it is clear that during the greater part of Jewish history, before and after the captivity, the southern wall of Jerusalem crossed upon this dam, there were remains of walls found which tended to show that at one period, at any rate, the wall circled round the two Siloam pools, leaving them outside the fortifications.

6. Ruins of Ancient Gates:

In the stretch of wall from "Maudslay's Scarp" to the Tyropeon valley remains of 2 city gates were found, and doubtful indications of 2 others. The ruins of the first of these gates are now included in the new extension of the Anglo-German cemetery. The gate had door sills, with sockets, of 4 periods superimposed upon each other; the width of the entrance was 8 ft. 10 inches during the earliest, and 8 ft. at the latest period. The character of the masonry tended to show that the gate belonged to the upper wall, which is apparently entirely of the Christian era. If this is so, this cannot be the "Gate of the Gai" of Nehemiah 3:13, although the earlier gate may have occupied this site. Bliss suggests as a probable position for this gate an interval between the two contiguous towers IV and V, a little farther to the East.

Another gate was a small one, 4 ft. 10 inches wide, marked only by the cuttings in the rock for the door sockets. It lay a little to the West of the city gate next to be described, and both from its position and its insignificance, it does not appear to have been an entrance to the city; it may, as Bliss suggests, have given access to a tower, now destroyed.

The second great city gateway was found some 200 ft. South of the Birket el Kamra, close to the southeastern angle of the ancient wall. The existing remains are bonded into walls of the earlier period, but the three superimposed door sills, with their sockets--to be seen uncovered today in situ--mark three distinct periods of long duration. The gate gave access to the great main street running down the Tyropeon, underneath which ran a great rock-cut drain, which probably traversed the whole central valley of the city. During the last two periods of the gate's use, a tower was erected--at the exact southeastern angle--to protect the entrance. The earliest remains here probably belong to the Jewish kings, and it is very probable that we have here the gate called by Ne (3:13) the "Dung Gate." Bliss considered that it might be the "Fountain Gate" (Nehemiah 3:15), which, however, was probably more to the East, although Bliss could find no remains of it surviving. The repairs and alterations here have been so extensive that its disappearance is in no way surprising. The Fountain Gate is almost certainly identical with the "Gate between the Two Walls," through which Zedekiah and his men of war fled (2 Kings 25:4; Jeremiah 39:4; 52:7).

7. Josephus' Description of the Walls:

The most definite account of the old walls is that of Josephus (Jewish Wars, V, iv, 1, 2), and though it referred primarily to the existing walls of his day, it is a convenient one for commencing the historical survey. He describes three walls. The first wall "began on the North, at the tower called Hippicus, and extended as far as the Xistus, and then Joining at the Council House, ended at the western cloister of the temple." On the course of this section of the wall there is no dispute. The tower Hippicus was close to the present Jaffa Gate, and the wall ran from here almost due West to the temple-area along the southern edge of the western arm of the Tyropeon (see III, 2, above). It is probable that the Karet edition Dawayeh, a street running nearly parallel with the neighboring "David Street," but high up above it, lies above the foundations of this wall.

8. First Wall:

It must have crossed the main Tyropeon near the Tarik bab es Silsilel, and joined the western cloisters close to where the Mechkemeh, the present "Council House," is situated.

Josephus traces the southern course of the first wall thus: "It began at the same place (i.e. Hippicus), and extended through a place called Bethso to the gate of the Essenes; and after that it went southward, having its bending above the fountain Siloam, when it also bends again toward the East at Solomon's Pool, and reaches as far as a certain place which they called `Ophlas,' where it was joined to the eastern cloister of the temple." Although the main course of this wall has now been followed with pick and shovel, several points are still uncertain. Bethso is not known, but must have been close to the southwestern angle, which, as we have seen, was situated where "Bishop Gobat's School" is today. It is very probably identical with the "Tower of the Furnaces" of Nehemiah 3:11, while the "Gate of the Essenes" must have been near, if not identical with, the "Gate of the Gai" of 3:13. The description of Josephus certainly seems to imply that the mouth of the Siloam aqueduct ("fountain of Siloam") and the pools were both outside the fortification. We have seen from these indications in the underground remains that this was the case at one period. Solomon's Pool is very probably represented by the modern Birket el Khamra. It is clear that the wall from here to the southeastern angle of the temple-platform followed the edge of the southeastern hill, and coincided farther north with the old wall excavated by Warren. As will be shown below, this first wall was the main fortification of the city from the time of the kings of Judah onward. In the time of Josephus, this first wall had 60 towers.

9. Second Wall:

The Second Wall of Josephus "took its beginning from that gate which they called `Gennath,' which belonged to the first wall: it only encompassed the northern quarter of the city and reached as far as the tower Antonia" (same place). In no part of Jerusalem topography has there been more disagreement than upon this wall, both as regards its curve and as regards its date of origin. Unfortunately, we have no idea at all where the "Gate Gennath" was. The Tower Antonia we know. The line must have passed in a curved or zigzag direction from some unknown point on the first wall, i.e. between the Jaffa Gate and the Charam to the Antonia. A considerable number of authorities in the past and a few careful students today would identify the general course of this wall with that of the modern northern wall. The greatest objections to this view are that no really satisfactory alternative course has been laid down for the third wall (see below), and that it must have run far North of the Antonia, a course which does not seem to agree with the description of Josephus, which states that the wall "went up" to the Antonia. On the other hand, no certain remains of any city wall within the present north wall have ever been found; fragments have been reported by various observers (e.g. the piece referred to as forming the eastern wall of the so-called "Pool of Hezekiah"; see VII, ii, below), but in an area so frequently desolated and rebuilt upon--where the demand for squared stones must always have been great--it is probable that the traces, if surviving at all, are very scanty. This is the case with the south wall excavated by Bliss (see VI), and that neighborhood has for many centuries been unbuilt upon. It is quite probable that the area included within the second wall may have been quite small, merely the buildings which clustered along the sides of the Tyropeon. Its 40 towers may have been small and built close together, because the position was, from the military aspect, weak. It must be remembered that it was the unsatisfactory state of the second wall which necessitated a third wall. There is no absolute reason why it may not have excluded the greater part of the northwestern hill--and with it the site of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre--but there is no proof that it did. The date of the second wall is unknown (see below).

10. Third Wall:

This third wall, which was commenced after the time of Christ by Herod Agrippa I, is described in more detail by Josephus. It was begun upon an elaborate plan, but was not finished in its original design because Agrippa feared Claudius Caesar, "lest he should suspect that so strong a wall was built in order to make some innovation in public affairs" (Jewish Wars, V, iv, 2). It, however, at the time of the siege, was of a breadth of over 18 ft., and a height of 40 ft., and had 90 massive towers. Josephus describes it as beginning at the tower Hippicus (near the Jaffa Gate), "where it reached as far as the north quarter of the city, and the tower Psephinus." This mighty tower, 135 ft. high, was at the northwestern corner and overlooked the whole city. From it, according to Josephus (Jewish Wars, V, vi, 3), there was a view of Arabia (Moab) at sunrising, and also of "the utmost limits of the Hebrew possessions at the Sea westward." From this corner the wall turned eastward until it came over against the monuments of Helene of Adiabene, a statement, however, which must be read in connection with another passage (Ant., XX, iv, 3), where it says that this tomb "was distant no more than 3 furlongs from the city of Jerusalem." The wall then "extended to a very great length" and passed by the sepulchral caverns of the kings--which may well be the so-called "Solomon's Quarries," and it then bent at the "Tower of the Corner," at a monument which is called the Monument of the Fuller (not identified), and joined to the old wall at the Kidron valley.

The commonly accepted theory is that a great part of this line of wall is that pursued by the modern north wall, and Kal`at el Jalud, or rather the foundation of it, that marks the site of Psephinus. The Damascus Gate is certainly on the line of some earlier gate. The "Tower of the Corner" was probably about where the modern Herod's Gate is, or a little more to the East, and the course of the wall was from here very probably along the southern edge of the "St. Anne's Valley," joining on to the Northeast corner of the Charam a little South of the present Stephen's Gate. This course of the wall fits in well with the description of Josephus. If the so-called "Tombs of the Kings" are really those of Queen Helena of Adiabene and her family, then the distance given as 3 furlongs is not as far out as the distance to the modern wall; the distance is actually 3 1/2 furlongs.

Others, following the learned Dr. Robinson, find it impossible to believe that the total circuit of the walls was so small, and would carry the third wall considerably farther north, making the general line of the modern north wall coincide with the second wall of Josephus. The supporters of this view point to the description of the extensive view from Psephinus, and contend that this presupposed a site on still higher ground, e.g. where the present Russian buildings now are. They also claim that the statement that the wall came "over against" the monument of Queen Helena certainly should mean very much nearer that monument than the present walls. Dr. Robinson and others who have followed him have pointed to various fragments which they claim to have been pieces of the missing wall. The present writer, after very many years' residence in Jerusalem, watching the buildings which in the last 25 years have sprung up over the area across which this line of wall is claimed to have run, has never seen a trace of wall foundations or of fosse which was in the very least convincing; while on the other hand this area now being rapidly covered by the modern suburb of Jerusalem presents almost everywhere below the surface virgin rock. There is no evidence of any more buildings than occasional scattered Roman villas, with mosaic floors. The present writer has rather unwillingly come to the opinion that the city walls were never farther north than the line they follow today. With respect to the objection raised that there could not possibly have been room enough between the two walls for the "Camp of the Assyrians," where Titus pitched his camp (Jewish Wars, V, vii, 3), any probable line for the second wall would leave a mean of 1,000 ft. between the two walls, and in several directions considerably more. The probable position of the "Camp of the Assyrians" would, according to this view, be in the high ground (the northwestern hill) now occupied by the Christian quarter of the modern city. The question of what the population of Jerusalem was at this period is discussed in IX, 49, below. For the other great buildings of the city at this period, see also IX, 43-44, below.

11. Date of Second Wall:

Taking then the walls of Jerusalem as described by Josephus, we may work backward and see how the walls ran in earlier periods. The third wall does not concern us any more, as it was built after the Crucifixion. With respect to the second wall, there is a great deal of difference of opinion regarding its origin. Some consider, like Sir Charles Watson, that it does not go back earlier than the Hasmoneans; whereas others (e.g. G.A. Smith), because of the expression in 2 Chronicles 32:5 that Hezekiah, after repairing the wall, raised "another wall without," think that this wall goes back as far as this monarch. The evidence is inconclusive, but the most probable view seems to be that the "first wall," as described by Josephus, was the only circuit of wall from the kings of Judah down to the 2nd century BC, and perhaps later.

12. Nehemiah's Account of the Walls:

The most complete Scriptural description we have of the walls and gates of Jerusalem is that given by Nehemiah. His account is valuable, not only as a record of what he did, but of what had been the state of the walls before the exile. It is perfectly clear that considerable traces of the old walls and gates remained, and that his one endeavor was to restore what had been before--even though it produced a city enclosure much larger than necessary at his time. The relevant passages are Nehemiah 2:13 - 15, the account of his night ride; Nehemiah 3:1 - 32, the description of the rebuilding; and Nehemiah 12:31 - 39, the routes of the two processions at the dedication.

13. Valley Gate:

In the first account we learn that Nehemiah went out by night by the VALLEY GATE (which see), or Gate of the Gai, a gate (that is, opening) into the Gai Hinnom, and probably at or near the gate discovered by Bliss in what is now part of the Anglo-German cemetery; he passed from it to the Dung Gate, and from here viewed the walls of the city.

14. Dung Gate:

This, with considerable assurance, may be located at the ruined foundations of a gate discovered by Bliss at the southeastern corner of the city. The line of wall clearly followed the south edge of the southwestern hill from the Anglo-German cemetery to this point. He then proceeded to the Fountain Gate, the site of which has not been recovered, but, as there must have been water running out here (as today) from the mouth of the Siloam tunnel, is very appropriately named here.

15. Fountain Gate:

Near by was the KING'S POOL (which see), probably the pool--now deeply buried--which is today represented by the Birket el Kamra. Here Nehemiah apparently thought of turning into the city, "but there was no place for the beast that was under me to pass" (2:14), so he went up by the Nachal (Kidron), viewed the walls from there, and then retraced his steps to the Valley Gate. There is another possibility, and that is that the King's Pool was the pool (which certainly existed) at Gihon, in which case the Fountain Gate may also have been in that neighborhood.

All the archaeological evidence is in favor of the wall having crossed the mouth of the Tyropeon by the great dam at this time, and the propinquity of this structure to the Fountain Gate is seen in Nehemiah 3:15, where we read that Shallum built the Fountain Gate "and covered it, and set up the doors thereof .... and the bars thereof, and the wall of the pool of Shelah (see SILOAM) by the KING'S GARDEN (which see), even unto the stairs that go down from the city of David." All these localities were close together at the mouth of el Wad.

Passing from here we can follow the circuit of the city from the accounts of the rebuilding of the walls in Nehemiah 3:15 f. The wall from here was carried "over against the sepulchres of David," which we know to have stood in the original "City of David" above Gihon, past "the pool that was made," and "the house of the Gibborim" (mighty men)--both unknown sites. It is clear that the wall is being carried along the edge of the southeastern hill toward the temple. We read of two angles in the wall--both needed by the geographical conditions--the high priest's house, of "the tower that standeth out" (supposed to have been unearthed by Warren), and the wall of the OPHEL (which see).

16. Water Gate:

There is also mention of a Water Gate in this position, which is just where one would expect a road to lead from the temple-area down to Gihon. From the great number of companies engaged in building, it may be inferred that all along this stretch of wall from the Tyropeon to the temple, the destruction of the walls had been specially great.

17. Horse Gate:

Proceeding North, we come to the Horse Gate. This was close to the entry to the king's house (2 Kings 11:16; 2 Chronicles 23:15; Jeremiah 31:40). The expression used, "above" the Horse Gate, may imply that the gate itself may have been uninjured; it may have been a kind of rock-cut passage or tunnel. It cannot have been far from the present southeastern angle of the city. Thence "repaired the priests, every one over against his own house"--the houses of these people being to the East of the temple. Then comes the Gate of Hammiphkad (see HAMMIPHKAD, GATE OF), the ascent (or "upper chamber," margin) of the corner, and finally the SHEEP GATE (which see), which was repaired by the goldsmiths and merchants.

18. Sheep Gate:

This last gate was the point from which the circuit of the repairs was traced. The references, Nehemiah 3:1 , 31 ; 12:39, clearly show that it was at the eastern extremity of the north wall.

The details of the gates and buildings in the north wall as described by Nehemiah, are difficult, and certainty is impossible; this side must always necessarily have been the weak side for defense because it was protected by no, or at best by very little, natural valley. As has been said, we cannot be certain whether Nehemiah is describing a wall which on its western two-thirds corresponded with the first or the second wall of Josephus. Taking the first theory as probable, we may plan it as follows: West of the Sheep Gate two towers are mentioned (Nehemiah 3:1; 12:39). Of these HANANEL (which see) was more easterly than HAMMEAH (which see), and, too, it would appear from Zechariah 14:10 to have been the most northerly point of the city. Probably then two towers occupied the important hill where afterward stood the fortress Baris and, later, the Antonia. At the Hammeah tower the wall would descend into the Tyropeon to join the eastern extremity of the first wall where in the time of Josephus stood the Council House (BJ, V, iv, 2).

19. Fish Gate:

It is generally considered that the FISH GATE (which see) (Nehemiah 3:3 ; 12:39 ; Zechariah 1:10 ; 2 Chronicles 33:14) stood across the Tyropeon in much the same way as the modern Damascus Gate does now, only considerably farther South. It was probably so called because here the men of Tyre sold their fish (Nehemiah 13:16). It is very probably identical with the "Middle Gate" of Jeremiah 39:3. With this region are associated the MISHNEH (which see) or "second quarter" (Zechariah 1:10 margin) and the MAKTESH (which see) or "mortar" (Zechariah 1:11).

20. "Old Gate":

The next gate westward, after apparently a considerable interval, is translated in English Versions of the Bible the "OLD GATE" (which see), but is more correctly the "Gate of the old ...."; what the word thus qualified is, is doubtful. Nehemiah 3:6 margin suggests "old city" or "old wall," whereas Mitchell (Wall of Jerusalem according to the Book of Neh) proposes "old pool," taking the pool in question to be the so-called "Pool of Hezekiah." According to the view here accepted, that the account of Nehemiah refers only to the first wall, the expression "old wall would be peculiarly suitable, as here must have been some part of that first wall which went back unaltered to the time of Solomon. The western wall to the extent of 400 cubits had been rebuilt after its destruction by Jehoash, king of Israel (see IX, 12, below), and Manasseh had repaired all the wall from Gihon round North and then West to the Fish Gate. This gate has also been identified with the Sha'ar ha-Pinnah, or "Corner Gate," of 2 Kings 14:13 ; 2 Chronicles 25:23 ; Jeremiah 31:38 ; Zechariah 14:10, and with the Sha`ar ha-Ri'shon, or "First Gate," of Zechariah 14:10, which is identified as the same as the Corner Gate; indeed ri'shon ("first") is probably a textual error for yashan ("old"). If this is so, this "Gate of the Old" or "Corner Gate" must have stood near the northwestern corner of the city, somewhere near the present Jaffa Gate.

21. Gate of Ephraim:

The next gate mentioned is the Gate of Ephraim (Nehemiah 12:39), which, according to 2 Kings 14:13 ; 2 Chronicles 25:23, was 400 cubits or 600 ft. from the Corner Gate. This must have been somewhere on the western wall; it is scarcely possible to believe, as some writers would suggest, that there could have been no single gate between the Corner Gate near the northwestern corner and the Valley Gate on the southern wall.

22. Tower of the Furnaces:

The "Broad Wall" appears to correspond to the southern stretch of the western wall as far as the "Tower of the Furnaces" or ovens, which was probably the extremely important corner tower now incorporated in "Bishop Gobat's School." This circuit of the walls satisfies fairly well all the conditions; the difficulties are chiefly on the North and West. It is a problem how the Gate of Ephraim comes to be omitted in the account of the repairs, but G.A. Smith suggests that it may be indicated by the expression, "throne of the governor beyond the river" (Nehemiah 3:7). See, however, Mitchell (loc. cit.). If theory be accepted that the second wall already existed, the Corner Gate and the Fish Gate will have to be placed farther north.

23. The Gate of Benjamin:

In Old Testament as in later times, some of the gates appear to have received different names at various times. Thus the Sheep Gate, at the northeastern angle, appears to be identical with the Gate of Benjamin or Upper Gate of Benjamin (Jeremiah 20:2 ; 37:13 ; 38:7); the prophet was going, apparently, the nearest way to his home in Anathoth. In Zechariah 14:10 the breadth of the city is indicated, where the prophet writes, "She shall be lifted up, and shall dwell in her place, from Benjamin's gate unto the place of the first gate, unto the corner gate."

24. Upper Gate of the Temple:

The Upper Gate of the Temple (2 Kings 15:35 ; 2 Chronicles 27:3; compare 2 Chronicles 23:20 ; Ezekiel 9:2) is probably another name for the same gate. It must be remembered the gates were, as excavations have shown us, reduced to a minimum in fortified sites: they were sources of weakness.

The general outline of the walls and gates thus followed is in the main that existing from Nehemiah back until the early Judean monarchy, and possibly to Solomon.

25. The Earlier Walls:

Of the various destructions and repairs which occurred during the time of the monarchy, a sufficient account is given in IX below, on the history. Solomon was probably the first to enclose the northwestern hill within the walls, and to him usually is ascribed all the northern and western stretch of the "First Wall"; whether his wall ran down to the mouth of the Tyropeon, or only skirted the summit of the northwestern hill is uncertain, but the latter view is probable. David was protected by the powerful fortifications of the Jebusites, which probably enclosed only the southeastern hill; he added to the defenses the fortress MILLO (which see). It is quite possible that the original Jebusite city had but one gate, on the North (2 Samuel 15:2), but the city must have overflowed its narrow limits during David's reign and have needed an extended and powerful defense, such as Solomon made, to secure the capital. For the varied history and situation of the walls in the post-Biblical period, see IX ("History"), below.


In a city like Jerusalem, where the problem of a water-supply must always have been one of the greatest, it is only natural that some of the most ancient and important works should have centered round it. The three sources of supply have been (1) springs, (2) cisterns, (3) aqueducts.

(1) The Natural Spring:

The natural springs have been described in II, 3; but connected with them, and especially with the city's greatest and most venerated source, the Gihon, there are certain antiquarian remains of great interest.

1. Gihon:
(a) The "Virgin's Fount," ancient Gihon, arises, as has been described (II, 3), in a rocky cleft in the Kidron valley bottom; under natural conditions the water would run along the valley bed, now deeply buried under debris of the ancient city, and doubtless when the earliest settlers made their dwellings in the caves (which have been excavated) on the sides of the valley near the spring, they and their flocks lived on the banks of a stream of running water in a sequestered valley among waterless hills. From, however, a comparatively early period--at the least 2000 BC--efforts were made to retain some of the water, and a solid stone dam was built which converted the sources into a pool of considerable depth. Either then, or somewhat later, excavations were made in the cliffs overhanging the pool, whereby some at least of these waters were conducted, by means of a tunnel, into the heart of the southeastern hill, "Ophel," so that the source could be reached from within the city walls. There are today two systems of tunnels which are usually classed as one under the name of the "Siloam aqueduct," but the two systems are probably many centuries apart in age.

2. The Aqueduct of the Canaanites:
The older tunnel begins in a cave near the source and then runs westward for a distance of 67 ft.; at the inner end of the tunnel there is a perpendicular shaft which ascends for over 40 ft. and opens into a lofty rock-cut passage which runs, with a slight lateral curvature, to the North, in the direction of the surface. The upper end has been partially destroyed, and the roof, which had fallen in, was long ago partially restored by a masonry arch. At this part of the passage the floor is abruptly interrupted across its whole width by a deep chasm which Warren partially excavated, but which Parker has since conclusively shown to end blindly. It is clear that this great gallery, which is 8 to 9 ft. wide, and in places as high or higher, was constructed (a natural cavern possibly utilized in the process) to enable the inhabitants of the walled-in city above it to reach the spring. It is in fact a similar work to the great water-passage at GEZER (which see), which commenced in a rock-cut pit 26 ft. deep and descended with steps, to a depth of 94 ft. 6 inches below the level of the rock surface; the sloping passage was 23 ft. high and 13 ft. broad. This passage which could be dated with certainty as before 1500 BC, and almost certainly as early as 2000 BC, was cut out with flint knives and apparently was made entirely to reach a great underground source of water.

3. Warren's Shaft:
The discovery of this Gezer well-passage has thrown a flood of light upon the "Warren's Shaft" in Jerusalem, which would appear to have been made for an exactly similar purpose. The chasm mentioned before may have been an effort to reach the source from a higher point, or it may have been made, or later adapted, to prevent ingress by means of the system of tunnels into the city. This passage is in all probability the "watercourse" (tsinnor) of 2 Samuel 5:8 up which, apparently, Joab and his men (1 Chronicles 11:6) secretly made their way; they must have waded through the water at the source, ascended the perpendicular shaft (a feat performed in 1910 by some British officers without any assistance from ladders), and then made their way into the heart of the city along the great tunnel. Judging by the similar Gezer water tunnel, this great work may not only have existed in David's time, but may have been constructed as much as 1,000 years before.

4. Hezekiah's "Siloam" Aqueduct:
The true Siloam tunnel is a considerably later work. It branches off from the older aqueduct at a point 67 ft. from the entrance, and after running an exceedingly winding course of 1,682 ft., it empties itself into the Pool of Siloam (total length 1,749 ft.). The whole canal is rock cut; it is 2 to 3 ft. wide, and varies in height from 16 ft. at the south end to 4 ft. 6 inches at the lowest point, near the middle. The condition of this tunnel has recently been greatly changed through Captain Parker's party having cleared out the accumulated silt of centuries; before this, parts of the channel could be traversed only with the greatest difficulty and discomfort. The primitive nature of this construction is shown by the many false passages made, and also by the extensive curves which greatly add to its length. This latter may also be partly due to the workmen following lines of soft strata. M. Clermont-Ganneau and others have thought that one or more of the great curves may have been made deliberately to avoid the tombs of the kings of Judah. The method of construction of the tunnel is narrated in the Siloam Inscription (see SILOAM). It was begun simultaneously from each end, and the two parties met in the middle. It is a remarkable thing that there is a difference of level of only one foot at each end; but the lofty height of the southern end is probably due to a lowering of the floor here after the junction was effected. It is practically certain that this great work is that referred to in 2 Kings 20:20: "Now the rest of the acts of Hezekiah, and all his might, and how he made the pool, and the conduit, and brought water into the city, are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Judah?" And in 2 Chronicles 32:30: "This same Hezekiah also stopped the upper spring of the waters of Gihon, and brought them straight down on the west side of the city of David."

5. Other Aqueducts at Gihon:
In addition to these two conduits, which have a direct Scriptural interest, there are remains of at least two other aqueducts which take their origin at the Virgin's Fount--one a channel deeply cut in rock along the western sides of the Kidron valley, found by Captain Parker, and the other a built channel, lined with very good cement, which takes its rise at a lower level than any of the other conduits close to the before-mentioned rocky cleft from which the water rises, and runs in a very winding direction along the western side of the Kidron. This the present writer has described in PEFS, 1902. One of these, perhaps more probably the former, may be the conduit which is referred to as Shiloah (shiloach), or "conducted" (Isaiah 8:6), before the construction of Hezekiah s work (see SILOAM).

There are other caves and rock-cut channels around the ancient Gihon which cannot fully be described here, but which abundantly confirm the sanctity of the site.

6. Bir Eyyub:
(b) Bir Eyyub has a depth of 125 ft.; the water collects at the bottom in a large rock-hewn chamber, and it is clear that it has been deepened at some period, because at the depth of 113 ft. there is a collecting chamber which is now replaced by the deeper one. Various rock-cut passages or staircases were found by Warren in the neighborhood of this well.

(2) The cisterns and tanks.--

7. Varieties of Cisterns:
Every ancient site in the hill country of Palestine is riddled with cisterns for the storage of rain water. In Jerusalem for very many centuries the private resident has depended largely upon the water collected from the roof of his house for all domestic purposes. Such cisterns lie either under or alongside the dwelling. Many of the earliest of these excavations are bottle-shaped, with a comparatively narrow mouth cut through the hard Mizzeh and a large rounded excavation made in the underlying Melekeh (see II, 1 above). Other ancient cisterns are cavities hewn in the rock, of irregular shape, with a roof of harder rock and often several openings. The later forms are vaulted over, and are either cut in the rock or sometimes partially built in the superlying rubbish.

For more public purposes large cisterns were made in the Charam, or temple-area. Some 3 dozen are known and planned; the largest is calculated to contain 3,000,000 gallons. Such structures were made largely for the religious ritual, but, as we shall see, they have been supplied by other sources than the rainfall. In many parts of the city open tanks have been constructed, such a tank being known in Arabic as a birkeh, or, followed by a vowel, birket. With most of these there is considerable doubt as to their date of construction, but probably none of them, in their present form at any rate, antedates the Roman period.

8. Birket Israel:
Within the city walls the largest reservoir is the Birket Israel which extends from the northeastern angle of the Charam westward for 360 ft. It is 125 ft. wide and was originally 80 ft. deep, but has in recent years been largely filled up by the city's refuse. The eastern and western ends of this pool are partially rock-cut and partly masonry, the masonry of the former being a great dam 45 ft. thick, the lower part of which is continuous with the ancient eastern wall of the temple-area. The sides of the pool are entirely masonry because this reservoir is built across the width of the valley referred to before (III, 2) as "St. Anne's Valley." Other parts of this valley are filled with debris to the depth of 100 ft. The original bottom of the reservoir is covered with a layer of about 19 inches of very hard concrete and cement. There was a great conduit at the eastern end of the pool built of massive stones, and connected with the pool by a perforated stone with three round holes 5 1/2 inches in diameter. The position of this outlet shows that all water over a depth of 22 ft. must have flowed away. Some authorities consider this pool to have been pre-exilic. By early Christian pilgrims it was identified as the "Sheep Pool" of John 5:2, and at a later period, until quite recent times, it was supposed to have been the Pool of Bethesda.

9. Pool of Bethesda:
The discovery, a few years ago, of the long-lost Piscina in the neighborhood of the "Church of Anne," which was without doubt the Pool of Bethesda of the 5th century AD, has caused this identification to be abandoned. See BETHESDA.

10. The Twin Pools:
To the West of the Birket Israel are the "twin pools" which extend under the roadway in the neighborhood of the "Ecce Homo" arch. The western one is 165 ft. by 20 ft. and the eastern 127 ft. by 20 ft. M. Clermont-Ganneau considers them to be identical with the Pool Struthius of Josephus (BJ, V, xi, 4), but others, considering that they are actually made in the fosse of the Antonia, give them a later date of origin. In connection with these pools a great aqueduct was discovered in 1871, 2 1/2-3 ft. wide and in places 12 ft. high, running from the neighborhood of the Damascus Gate--but destroyed farther north--and from the pools another aqueduct runs in the direction of the Charam.

11. Birket Hammam el Batrak:
On the northwestern hill, between the Jaffa Gate and the Church of the Sepulchre there is a large open reservoir, known to the modern inhabitants of the city as Birket Kammam el Batrak, "the Pool of the Patriarch's Bath." It is 240 ft. long (North to South), 144 ft. broad and 19-24 ft. deep. The cement lining of the bottom is cracked and practically useless. The eastern wall of this pool is particularly massive, and forms the base of the remarkably level street Karet en Nasara, or "Christian Street"; it is a not improbable theory that this is actually a fragment of the long-sought "second" wall. If so, the pool, which is proved to have once extended 60 ft. farther north, may have been constructed originally as part of the fosse. On the other hand, this pool appears to have been the Amygdalon Pool, or "Pool of the Tower" (berekhath ha-mighdalin), mentioned by Josephus (Jewish Wars, V, xi, 4), which was the scene of the activities of the 10th legion, and this seems inconsistent with the previous theory, as the events described seem to imply that the second wall ran outside the pool. The popular travelers' name, "Pool of Hezekiah," given to this reservoir is due to theory, now quite discredited, that this is the pool referred to in 2 Kings 20:20, "He made the pool, and the conduit, and brought water into the city." Other earlier topographists have identified it as the "upper pool" of Isaiah 7:3; 36:2.

12. Birket Mamilla:
The Birket Kammam el Batrak is supplied with water from the Birket Mamilla, about 1/2 mile to the West. This large pool, 293 ft. long by 193 ft. broad and 19 1/2 ft. deep, lies in the midst of a large Moslem cemetery at the head of the Wady Mes, the first beginning of the Wady er Rababi (Hinnom). The aqueduct which connects the two pools springs from the eastern end of the Birket Mamilla, runs a somewhat winding course and enters the city near the Jaffa Gate. The aqueduct is in bad repair, and the water it carries, chiefly during heavy rain, is filthy. In the Middle Ages it was supposed that this was the "Upper Pool of Gihon" (see GIHON), but this and likewise the "highway of the FULLER'S FIELD" (which see) are now located elsewhere. Wilson and others have suggested that it is the "Serpent's Pool" of Josephus (Jewish Wars, V, iii, 2). Titus leveled "all the places from Scopus to Herod's monument which adjoins the pool called that of the Serpent." Like many such identifications, there is not very much to be said for or against it; it is probable that the pool existed at the time of the siege. It is likely that this is the Beth Memel of the Talmud (the Babylonian Talmud, `Erubin 51 b; Sanhedrin 24 a; Bere'shith Rabba' 51).

13. Birket es Sultan:
The Birket es Sultan is a large pool--or, more strictly speaking, enclosure--555 ft. North and South by 220 ft. East and West. It is bounded on the West and North by a great curve of the low-level aqueduct as it passes along and then across the Wady er Rababi. The southern side consists of a massive dam across the valley over which the Bethlehem carriage road runs. The name may signify either the "great" pool or be connected with the fact that it was reconstructed in the 16th century by the sultan Suleiman ibn Selim, as is recorded on an inscription upon a wayside fountain upon the southern wall. This pool is registered in the cartulary of the Holy Sepulchre as the Lacus Germani, after the name of a knight of Germanus, who built or renovated the pool in 1176 AD. Probably a great part of the pool is a catchment area, and the true reservoir is the rock-cut birkeh at the southern end, which has recently been cleaned out. It is extremely difficult to believe that under any conditions any large proportion of the whole area could ever have even been filled. Today the reservoir at the lower end holds, after the rainy season, some 10 or 12 ft. of very dirty water, chiefly the street drainage of the Jaffa road, while the upper two-thirds of the enclosure is used as a cattle market on Fridays. The water is now used for sprinkling the dusty roads in dry seasons.

The Pool of Siloam and the now dry Birket el Kamra are described under SILOAM (which see). There are other tanks of considerable size in and around the city, e.g. the Birket Sitti Miriam, near "St. Stephen's Gate," an uncemented pool in the Wady Joz, connected with which there is a rockcut aqueduct and others, but they are not of sufficient historical importance to merit description here.

(3) Aqueducts:

The conduits bringing water to the city from a distance are called the "high-level" and "low-level" aqueducts respectively, because they reached the city at different levels--the former probably somewhere near the present Jaffa Gate, the latter at the temple-platform.

14. "Solomon's Pools", 15. Low-Level Aqueduct:
The low-level aqueduct which, though out of repair, can still be followed along its whole course, conveyed water from three great pools in the Wady `Artas, 7 miles South of Jerusalem. They are usually called "Solomon's pools," in reference perhaps partly to Ecclesiastes 2:6: "I made me pools o water, to water therefrom the forest where trees were reared," but as any mighty work in Palestine is apt to be referred to the wise king of Israel, much stress cannot be laid on the name. These three storage reservoirs are constructed across the breadth of the valley, the lowest and largest being 582 ft. long by 177 ft. broad and, at the lowest end, 50 ft. deep. Although the overflow waters of `Ain es Saleh, commonly known as the "sealed fountain" (compare Song of Solomon 4:12), reach the pools, the chief function was probably to collect the flood waters from the winter rains, and the water was passed from tank to tank after purification. There are in all four springs in this valley which supply the aqueduct which still conveys water to Bethlehem, where it passes through the hill by means of a tunnel and then, after running, winding along the sides of the hill, it enters another tunnel now converted into a storage tank for Jerusalem; from this it runs along the mountain sides and along the southern slopes of the site of Jerusalem to the Charam. The total length of this aqueduct is nearly 12 miles, but at a later date the supply was increased by the construction of a long extension of the conduit for a further 28 miles to Wady `Arrub on the road to Hebron, another 5 miles directly South of the pools. Here, too, there is a reservoir, the Birket el `Arrub, for the collection of the flood-water, and also several small springs, which are conducted in a number of underground rock-cut channels to the aqueduct. The total length of the low-level aqueduct is about 40 miles, and the fall in level from Birket el `Arrub (2,645 ft. above sea-level) at its far end to el Kas, the termination in the Charam Jerusalem (2,410 ft. above sea-level), is 235 ft.

16. High-Level Aqueduct:
The high-level aqueduct commences in a remarkable chain of wells connected with a tunnel, about 4 miles long, in the Wady Biar, "the Valley of Wells." Upward of 50 wells along the valley bottom supplied each its quotient; the water thence passed through a pool where the solid matter settled, and traversed a tunnel 1,700 ft. long into the `Artas valley. Here, where its level was 150 ft. above that of the low-level aqueduct, the conduit received the waters of the "sealed fountain," and finally "delivered them in Jerusalem at a level of about 20 ft. above that of the Jaffa Gate" (Wilson). The most remarkable feature of this conduit is the inverted siphon of perforated limestone blocks, forming a stone tube 15 inches in diameter, which carried the water across the valley near Rachel's Tomb.

17. Dates of Construction of These Aqueducts:
On a number of these blocks, Latin inscriptions with the names of centurions of the time of Severus (195 AD) have been found, and this has led many to fix a date to this great work. So good an authority as Wilson, however, considers that these inscriptions may refer to repairs, and that the work is more probably Herodian. Unless the accounts of Josephus (Jewish Wars, V, iv, 4; II, xvii, 9) are exaggerated, Herod must have had some means of bringing abundant running water into the city at the level obtained by this conduit. The late Dr. Schick even suggested a date as early as Hyrcanus (135-125 BC). With regard to the low-level aqueduct, we have two definite data. First Josephus (Ant., XVIII, iii, 2) states that Pontius Pilate "undertook to bring a current of water to Jerusalem, and did it with the sacred money, and derived the origin of the stream from the distance of 200 furlongs," over 22 miles; in Jewish Wars, II, ix, 4 he is said to have brought the water "from 400 furlongs"--probably a copyist's error. But these references must either be to restorations or to the extension from Wady `Arrub to Wady `Artas (28 miles), for the low-level aqueduct from the pools to Jerusalem is certainly the same construction as the aqueduct from these pools to the "Frank Mountain," the Herodium, and that, according to the definite statements of Josephus (Ant., XV, ix, 4; BJ, I, xxi, 10), was made by Herod the Great. On the whole the usual view is that the high-level aqueduct was the work of Severus, the low-level that of Herod, with an extension southward by Pontius Pilate.

Jerus still benefits somewhat from the low-level aqueduct which is in repair as far as Bethlehem, though all that reaches the city comes only through a solitary 4-inch pipe. The high-level aqueduct is hopelessly destroyed and can be traced only in places; the wells of Wady Biar are choked and useless, and the long winding aqueduct to Wady 'Arrub is quite broken.


1. The "Tombs of the Kings":

Needless to say all the known ancient tombs in the Jerusalem area have been rifled of their contents long ago. The so-called Tombs of the Kings in the Wady el Joz are actually the monument of Queen Helena of Adiabene, a convert to Judaism (circa 48 AD). Josephus (Ant., XX, iv, 3) states that her bones, with those of members of her family, were buried "at the pyramids," which were 3 in number and distant from Jerusalem 3 furlongs. A Hebrew inscription upon a sarcophagus found here by De Saulcy ran: (tsarah malkethah), "Queen Sarah," possibly the Jewish name of Queen Helena.

2. "Herod's Tomb":

On the western side of the Wady el Mes (the higher part of Hinnom), is a very interesting Greek tomb containing beautifully carved sarcophagi. These are commonly known as "Herod's Tombs" (although Herod the Great was buried on the Herodium), and, according to Schick, one of the sarcophagi may have belonged to Mariamne, Herod's wife. A more probable theory is that this is the tomb of the high priest Ananias (Jewish Wars, V, xii, 2).

3. "Absalom's Tomb":

On the eastern side of the Kidron, near the southeastern angle of the Charam, are 3 conspicuous tombs. The most northerly, Tantur Fer`on, generally called "Absalom's Tomb," is a Greek-Jewish tomb of the Hasmonean period, and, according to Conder, possibly the tomb of Alexander Janneus (HDB, article "Jerusalem"). S. of this is the traditional "Grotto of James," which we know by a square Hebrew inscription over the pillars to be the family tomb of certain members of the priestly family (1 Chronicles 24:15), of the Beni Hazir. It may belong to the century before Christ.

The adjoining traditional tomb of Zachariah is a monolithic monument cut out of the living rock, 16 ft. square and 30 ft. high. It has square pilasters at the corners, Ionic pillars between, and a pyramidal top. Its origin is unknown; its traditional name is due to our Lord's word in Matthew 23:35; Luke 11:51 (see ZACHARIAH).

4. The "Egyptian Tomb":

A little farther down the valley of the Kidron, at the commencement of the village of Siloam, is another rock-cut tomb, the so-called Egyptian Tomb, or according to some, "the tomb of Solomon's Egyptian wife." It is a monolith 18 ft. square and 11 ft. high, and the interior has at one time been used as a chapel. It is now Russian property. It probably belongs to much the same period as the three before-mentioned tombs, and, like them, shows strong Egyptian influence.

The so-called "Tombs of the Judges" belong to the Roman period, as do the scores of similar excavations in the same valley. The "Tombs of the Prophets" on the western slopes of the Mount of Olives are now considered to belong to the 4th or 5th Christian century.

Near the knoll over Jeremiah's Grotto, to the West and Northwest, are a great number of tombs, mostly Christian. The more northerly members of the group are now included in the property of the Dominicans attached to the Church of Stephen, but one, the southernmost, has attracted a great deal of attention because it was supposed by the late General Gordon to be the tomb of Christ.

5. The "Garden Tomb":

In its condition when found it was without doubt, like its neighbors, a Christian tomb of about the 5th century, and it was full of skeletons. Whether it may originally have been a Jewish tomb is unproved; it certainly could not have been recognized as a site of any sanctity until General Gordon promulgated his theory (see PEFS, 1892, 120-24; see also GOLGOTHA).

6. Tomb of "Simon the Just":

The Jews greatly venerate a tomb on the eastern side of the Wady el Joz, not far South of the great North Road; they consider it to be the tomb of Simon the Just, but it is in all probability not a Jewish tomb at all.

7. Other Antiquities:

Only passing mention can here be made of certain remains of interest connected with the exterior walls of the Charam. The foundation walls of the temple-platform are built, specially upon the East, South and West, of magnificent blocks of smooth, drafted masonry with an average height of 3 1/2 ft. One line, known as the "master course," runs for 600 ft. westward from the southeastern angle, with blocks 7 ft. high. Near the southeastern angle at the foundation itself, certain of the blocks were found by the Palestine Exploration Fund engineers to be marked with Phoenician characters, which it was supposed by many at the time of their discovery indicated their Solomonic origin. It is now generally held that these "masons' marks" may just as well have been used in the time of Herod the Great, and on other grounds it is held that all this magnificent masonry is due to the vast reconstruction of the Temple which this great monarch initiated (see TEMPLE). In the western wall of the Charam, between the southwestern corner and the "Jewish wailing place," lies "Robinson's Arch." It is the spring of an arch 50 ft. wide, projecting from the temple-wall; the bridge arising from it had a span of 50 ft., and the pier on the farther side was discovered by Warren. Under the bridge ran a contemporary paved Roman street, and beneath the unbroken pavement was found, lying inside a rock aqueduct, a voussoir of an older bridge. This bridge connected the temple-enclosure with the upper city in the days of the Hasmonean kings. It was broken down in 63 BC by the Jews in anticipation of the attack of Pompey (Antiquities, XIV, iv, 2; BJ, I, vii, 2), but was rebuilt by Herod in 19 BC (Jewish Wars, VI, viii, 1; vi, 2), and finally destroyed in 70 AD.

Nearly 600 ft. farther North, along this western temple-wall is Wilson's Arch, which lies under the surface within the causeway which crosses the Tyropeon to the Babylonian es Silseleh of the Charam; although not itself very ancient there are here, deeper down, arches belonging to the Herodian causeway which here approached the temple-platform.

8. Ecclesiastical Sites:

With regard to the common ecclesiastical sites visited by pious pilgrims little need be said here. The congeries of churches that is included under that name of Church of the Holy Sepulchre includes a great many minor sites of the scenes of the Passion which have no serious claims. Besides the Holy Sepulchre itself--which, apart from its situation, cannot be proved or disproved, as it has actually been destroyed--the only important site is that of "Mount Calvary." All that can be said is that if the Sepulchre is genuine, then the site may be also; it is today the hollowed-out shell of a rocky knoll encased in marble and other stones and riddled with chapels. See GOLGOTHA.

The coenaculum, close to the Moslem "Tomb of David" (a site which has no serious claims), has been upheld by Professor Sanday (Sacred Sites of the Gospels) as one which has a very strong tradition in its favor. The most important evidence is that of Epiphanias, who states that when Hadrian visited Jerusalem in 130, one of the few buildings left standing was "the little Church of God, on the site where the disciples, returning after the Ascension of the Saviour from Olivet, had gone up to the Upper room, for there it had been built, that is to say in the quarter of Zion." In connection with this spot there has been pointed out from early Christian times the site of the House of Caiaphas and the site of the death of the Virgin Mary--the Dormitio Sanctae Virginis. It is in consequence of this latter tradition that the German Roman Catholics have now erected here their magnificent new church of the Dormition. A rival line of traditions locates the tomb of the Virgin in the Kidron valley near Gethsemane, where there is a remarkable underground chapel belonging to the Greeks.


Pre-Israelite period.--The beginnings of Jerusalem are long before recorded history: at various points in the neighborhood, e.g. at el Bukei`a to the Southwest, and at the northern extremity of the Mount of Olives to the Northeast, were very large settlements of Paleolithic man, long before the dawn of history, as is proved by the enormous quantities of Celts scattered over the surface. It is certain that the city's site itself was occupied many centuries before David, and it is a traditional view that the city called SALEM (which see) (Genesis 14:18), over which Melchizedek was king, was identical with Jerusalem.

1. Tell el-Amarna Correspondence:

The first certain reference to this city is about 1450 BC, when the name Ur-u-salem occurs in several letters belonging to the Tell el-Amarna Letters correspondence. In 7 of these letters occurs the name Abd Khiba, and it is clear that this man was "king," or governor of the city, as the representative of Pharaoh of Egypt. In this correspondence Abd Khiba represents himself as hard pressed to uphold the rights of his suzerain against the hostile forces which threaten to overwhelm him. Incidentally we may gather that the place was then a fortified city, guarded partly by mercenary Egyptian troops, and there are reasons for thinking that then ruler of Egypt, Amenhotep IV, had made it a sanctuary of his god Aten--the sun-disc. Some territory, possibly extending as far west as Ajalon, seems to have been under the jurisdiction of the governor. Professor Sayce has stated that Abd Khiba was probably a Hittite chief, but this is doubtful. The correspondence closes abruptly, leaving us in uncertainty with regard to the fate of the writer, but we know that the domination of Egypt over Palestine suffered an eclipse about this time.

2. Joshua's Conquest:

At the time of Joshua's invasion of Canaan, ADONI-ZEDEK (which see) is mentioned (Joshua 10:1-27) as king of Jerusalem; he united with the kings of Hebron, Jarmuth, Lachish and Eglon to fight against the Gibeonites who had made peace with Joshua; the 5 kings were defeated and, being captured in hiding at the cave Makkedah, were all slain. Another king, ADONIBEZEK (which see) (whom some identify with Adoni-zedek), was defeated by Judah after the death of Joshua, and after being mutilated was brought to Jerusalem and died there (Judges 1:1 - 7), after which it is recorded (Judges 1:8) that Judah "fought against Jerusalem, and took it .... and set the city on fire." But it is clear that the city remained in the hands of the "Jebusites" for some years more (Judges 1:21 ; 19:11), although it was theoretically reckoned on the southern border of Benjamin (Joshua 15:8 ; 18:16 , 28). David, after he had reigned 7 1/2 years at Hebron, determined to make the place his capital and, about 1000 BC, captured the city.

3. Site of the Jebusite City:

Up to this event it is probable that Jerusalem was like other contemporary fortified sites, a comparatively small place encircled with powerful walls, with but one or perhaps two gates; it is very generally admitted that this city occupied the ridge to the South of the temple long incorrectly called "Ophel," and that its walls stood upon steep rocky scarps above the Kidron valley on the one side, and the Tyropeon on the other. We have every reason to believe that the great system of tunnels, known as "Warren's Shaft" (see VII, 3, above) existed all through this period.

4. David:

The account of the capture of Jerusalem by David is obscure, but it seems a probable explanation of a difficult passage (2 Samuel 5:6 - 9) if we conclude that the Jebusites, relying upon the extraordinary strength of their position, challenged David: "Thou shalt not come in hither, but the blind and the lame shall turn thee away" (2 Samuel 5:6 margin), and that David directed his followers to go up the "watercourse" and smite the "lame and the blind"--a term he in his turn applies mockingly to the Jebusites. "And Joab the son of Zeruiah went up first, and was made chief" (1 Chronicles 11:6). It seems at least probable that David's men captured the city through a surprise attack up the great tunnels (see VII, 3, above). David having captured the stronghold "Zion," renamed it the "City of David" and took up his residence there; he added to the strength of the fortifications "round about from the MILLO (which see) and onward"; with the assistance of Phoenician workmen supplied by Hiram, king of Tyre, he built himself "a house of cedar" (2 Samuel 5:11 ; compare 7:2). The ark of Yahweh was brought from the house of Obed-edom and lodged in a tent (2 Samuel 6:17) in the "city of David" (compare 1 Kings 8:1). The threshing-floor of Araunah (2 Samuel 24:18), or Ornan (1 Chronicles 21:15), the Jebusite, was later purchased as the future site of the temple.

5. Expansion of the City:

The Jerusalem which David captured was small and compact, but there are indications that during his reign it must have increased considerably by the growth of suburbs outside the Jebusite walls. The population must have been increased from several sources. The influx of David's followers doubtless caused many of the older inhabitants to be crowded out of the walled area. There appear to have been a large garrison (2 Samuel 15:18 ; 20:7), many officials and priests and their families (2 Samuel 8:16 - 18 ; 20:23 - 26 ; 23:8), and the various members of David's own family and their relatives (2 Samuel 5:13 - 16 ; 14:24 , 28 ; 1 Kings 1:5 , 53, etc.). It is impossible to suppose that all these were crowded into so narrow an area, while the incidental mention that Absalom lived two whole years in Jerusalem without seeing the king's face implies suburbs (2 Samuel 14:24 , 28). The new dwellings could probably extend northward toward the site of the future temple and northwestward into and up the Tyropeon valley along the great north road. It is improbable that they could have occupied much of the western hill.

6. Solomon:

With the accession of Solomon, the increased magnificence of the court, the foreign wives and their establishments, the new officials and the great number of work people brought to the city for Solomon's great buildings must necessarily have enormously swelled the resident population, while the recorded buildings of the city, the temple, the king's house, the House of the Daughter of Pharaoh, the House of the Forest of Lebanon, the Throne Hall and the Pillared Hall (1 Kings 7:1 - 8) must have altered the whole aspect of the site. In consequence of these new buildings, the sanctuary together with the houses of the common folk, a new wall for the city was necessary, and we have a statement twice made that Solomon built "the wall of Jerusalem round about" (1 Kings 3:1 ; 9:15); it is also recorded that he built Millo (1 Kings 9:15 , 24 ; 11:27), and that "he repaired the breach of the city of David his father" (1 Kings 11:27). The question of the Millo is discussed elsewhere (see MILLO); the "breach" referred to may have been the connecting wall needed to include the Millo within the complete circle of fortifications, or else some part of David's fortification which his death had left incomplete.

7. Solomon's City Wall:

As regards the "Wall of Jerus" which Solomon built, it is practically certain that it was, on the North and West, that described by Josephus as the First Wall (see VI, 7 above). The vast rock-cut scarps at the southwestern corner testify to the massiveness of the building. Whether the whole of the southwestern hill was included is matter of doubt. Inasmuch as there are indications at Bliss's tower (see VI, 4th above) of an ancient wall running northeasterly, and enclosing the summit of the southwestern hill, it would appear highly probable that Solomon's wall followed that line; in this case this wall must have crossed the Tyropeon at somewhat the line of the existing southern wall, and then have run southeasterly to join the western wall of the old city of the Jebusites. The temple and palace buildings were all enclosed in a wall of finished masonry which made it a fortified place by itself--as it appears to have been through Hebrew history--and these walls, where external to the rest of the city, formed part of the whole circle of fortification.

Although Solomon built so magnificent a house for Yahweh, he erected in the neighborhood shrines to other local gods (1 Kings 11:7,8), a lapse ascribed largely to the influence of his foreign wives and consequent foreign alliances.

8. The Disruption (933 BC):

The disruption of the kingdom must have been a severe blow to Jerusalem, which was left the capital, no longer of a united state, but of a petty tribe. The resources which were at the command of Solomon for the building up of the city were suddenly cut off by Jeroboam's avowed policy, while the long state of war which existed between the two peoples--a state lasting 60 years (1 Kings 14:30 ; 15:6 , 16 ; 22:44)--must have been very injurious to the growth of commerce and the arts of peace.

9. Invasion of Shishak (928 BC):

In the 5th year of Rehoboam (928), Shishak (Sheshonq) king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem (1 Kings 14:25) and took "the fenced cities of Judah" (2 Chronicles 12:4 the King James Version). It has been commonly supposed that he besieged and captured Jerusalem itself, but as there is no account of the destruction of fortifications and as the name of this city has not been deciphered upon the Egyptian records of this campaign, it is at least as probable, and is as consistent with the Scriptural references, that Shishak was bought off with "the treasures of the house of Yahweh, and the treasures of the king's house" and "all the shields of gold which Solomon had made" (1 Kings 14:26).

10. City Plundered by Arabs:

It is clear that by the reign of Jehoshaphat the city had again largely recovered its importance (compare 1 Kings 22), but in his son Jehoram's reign (849-842 BC) Judah was invaded and the royal house was pillaged by Philistines and Arabs (2 Chronicles 21:16 - 17). Ahaziah (842 BC), Jehoram's son, came to grief while visiting his maternal relative at Jezreel, and after being wounded in his chariot near Ibleam, and expiring at Megiddo, his body was carried to Jerusalem and there buried (2 Kings 9:27 - 28). Jerusalem was now the scene of the dramatic events which center round the usurpation and death of Queen Athaliah (2 Kings 11:16 ; 2 Chronicles 23:15) and the coronation and reforms of her grandson Joash (2 Kings 12:1 - 16 ; 2 Chronicles 24:1 - 14).

11. Hazael King of Syria Bought Off (797 BC):

After the death of the good priest Jehoiada, it is recorded (2 Chronicles 24:15) that the king was led astray by the princes of Judah and forsook the house of Yahweh, as a consequence of which the Syrians under Hazael came against Judah and Jerusalem, slew the princes and spoiled the land, Joash giving him much treasure from both palace and temple (2 Kings 12:17 , 18 ; 2 Chronicles 24:23). Finally Joash was assassinated (2 Kings 12:20 , 21 ; 2 Chronicles 24:25) "at the house of Millo, on the way that goeth down to Silla."

12. Capture of the City of Jehoash of Israel:

During the reign of Amaziah (797-729 BC), the murdered king's son, a victory over Edom appears to have so elated the king that he wantonly challenged Jehoash of Israel to battle (2 Kings 14:8). The two armies met at Beth-shemesh, and Judah was defeated and "fled every man to his tent." Jerusalem was unable to offer any resistance to the victors, and Jehoash "brake down the wall of Jerusalem from the gate of Ephraim unto the corner gate, 400 cubits" and then returned to Samaria, loaded with plunder and hostages (2 Kings 14:14). Fifteen years later, Amaziah was assassinated at Lachish whither he had fled from a conspiracy; nevertheless they brought his body upon horses, and he was buried in Jerusalem.

13. Uzziah's Refortification (779-740 BC):

Doubtless it was a remembrance of the humiliation which his father had undergone which made Uzziah (Azariah) strengthen his position. He subdued the Philistines and the Arabs in Gur, and put the Ammonites to tribute (2 Chronicles 26:7 , 8). He "built towers in Jerusalem at the corner gate, and at the valley gate, and at the turnings (Septuagint) of the walls, and fortified them" (2 Chronicles 26:9). He is also described as having made in Jerusalem "engines, invented by skillful men, to be on the towers and upon the battlements, wherewith to shoot arrows and great stones" (2 Chronicles 26:15). The city during its long peace with its northern neighbors appears to have recovered something of her prosperity in the days of Solomon. During his reign the city was visited by a great earthquake (Zechariah 14:4 ; Amos 1:1 ; compare Isaiah 9:10 ; 29:6 ; Amos 4:11 ; 8:8). Jotham, his son, built the upper gate of the house of Yahweh" (2 Kings 15:35 ; 2 Chronicles 27:3), probably the same as the "upper gate of Benjamin" (Jeremiah 20:2). He also built much on the wall of Ophel--probably the ancient fortress of Zion on the southeastern hill (2 Chronicles 27:3); see OPHEL.

14. Ahaz Allies with Assyria (736-728 BC):

His son Ahaz was soon to have cause to be thankful for his father's and grandfather's work in fortifying the city, for now its walls were successful in defense against the kings of Syria and Israel (2 Kings 16:5 , 6); but Ahaz, feeling the weakness of his little kingdom, bought with silver and gold from the house of Yahweh the alliance of Tiglath-pileser, king of Assyria. He met the king at Damascus and paid him a compliment by having an altar similar to his made for his own ritual in the temple (2 Kings 16:10 - 12). His reign is darkened by a record of heathen practices, and specially by his making "his son to pass through the fire"--as a human sacrifice in, apparently, the Valley of Hinnom (1 Kings 16:3 - 4; compare 2 Chronicles 28:3).

15. Hezekiah's Great Works:

Hezekiah (727-699 BC), his son, succeeded to the kingdom at a time of surpassing danger. Samaria, and with it the last of Israel's kingdom, had fallen. Assyria had with difficulty been bought off, the people were largely apostate, yet Jerusalem was never so great and so inviolate to prophetic eyes (Isaiah 7:4 ; 8:8 , 10 ; 10:28 ; 14:25 - 32 , etc.). Early in his reign, the uprising of the Chaldean Merodach-baladan against Assyria relieved Judah of her greatest danger, and Hezekiah entered into friendly relations with this new king of Babylon, showing his messengers all his treasures (Isaiah 39:1 , 2). At this time or soon after, Hezekiah appears to have undertaken great works in fitting his capital for the troubled times which lay before him. He sealed the waters of Gihon and brought them within the city to prevent the kings of Assyria from getting access to them (2 Kings 20:20 ; 2 Chronicles 32:4 , 30). See SILOAM.

It is certain, if their tunnel was to be of any use, the southwestern hill must have been entirely enclosed, and it is at least highly probable that in the account (2 Chronicles 32:5), he "built up all the wall that was broken down, and built towers thereon (margin), and the other wall without," the last phrase may refer to the stretch of wall along the edge of the southwestern hill to Siloam. On the other hand, if that was the work of Solomon, "the other wall" may have been the great buttressed dam, with a wall across it which closed the mouth of the Tyropeon, which was an essential part of his scheme of preventing a besieging army from getting access to water. He also strengthened MILLO (which see), on the southeastern hill. Secure in these fortifications, which made Jerusalem one of the strongest walled cities in Western Asia, Hezekiah, assisted, as we learn from Sennacherib's descriptions, by Arab mercenaries, was able to buy off the great Assyrian king and to keep his city inviolate (2 Kings 18:13 - 16). A second threatened attack on the city appears to be referred to in 2 Kings 19:9 - 37.

16. His Religious Reforms:

Hezekiah undertook reforms. "He removed the high places, and brake the pillars, and cut down the Asherah: and he brake in pieces the brazen serpent that Moses had made and .... he called it Nehushtan," i.e. a piece of brass (2 Kings 18:4).

Manasseh succeeded his father when but 12, and reigned 55 years (698-643) in Jerusalem (2 Kings 21:1). He was tributary to Esarhaddon and Ashurbanipal, as we know from their inscriptions; in one of the latter's he is referred to as king "of the city of Judah." The king of Assyria who, it is said (2 Chronicles 33:11; compare Ant, X, iii, 2), carried Manasseh in chains to Babylon, was probably Ashurbanipal. How thoroughly the country was permeated by Assyrian influence is witnessed by the two cuneiform tablets recently found at Gezer belonging to this Assyrian monarch's reign (PEFS, 1905, 206, etc.).

17. Manasseh's Alliance with Assyria:

The same influence, extending to the religious sphere, is seen in the record (2 Kings 21:5) that Manasseh "built altars for all the host of heaven in the two courts of the house of Yahweh." There are other references to the idolatrous practices introduced by this king (compare Jeremiah 7:18; 2 Kings 23:5,11,12, etc.). He also filled Jerusalem from one end to the other with the innocent blood of martyrs faithful to Yahweh (2 Kings 21:16; compare Jeremiah 19:4). Probably during this long reign of external peace the population of the city much increased, particularly by the influx of foreigners from less isolated regions.

18. His Repair of the Walls:

Of this king's improvements to the fortifications of Jerusalem we have the statement (2 Chronicles 33:14), "He built an outer wall to the city of David, on the west side of Gihon in the valley, even to the entrance at the fish gate." This must have been a new or rebuilt wall for the whole eastern side of the city. He also compassed about the OPHEL (which see) and raised it to a very great height.

Manasseh was the first of the Judahic kings to be buried away from the royal tombs. He was buried (as was his son Amon) "in the garden of his own house, in the garden of Uzza" (2 Kings 21:18). These may be the tombs referred to (Ezekiel 43:7 - 9) as too near the temple precincts.

19. Josiah and Religious Reforms (640-609 BC):

In the reign of Josiah was found the "Book of the Law," and the king in consequence instituted radical reforms (2 Kings 22 ; 23). Kidron smoked with the burnings of the Asherah and of the vessels of Baal, and Topheth in the Valley of Hinnom was defiled. At length after a reign of 31 years (2 Kings 23:29 , 30), Josiah, in endeavoring to intercept Pharaoh-necoh from combining with the king of Babylon, was defeated and slain at Megiddo and was buried "in his own sepulchre" in Jerusalem--probably in the same locality where his father and grandfather lay buried. Jehoahaz, after a reign of but 3 months, was carried captive (2 Kings 23:34) by Necoh to Egypt, where he died--and apparently was buried among strangers (Jeremiah 22:10 - 12). His brother Eliakim, renamed Jehoiakim, succeeded. In the 4th year of his reign, Egypt was defeated at Carchemish by the Babylonians, and as a consequence Jehoiakim had to change from subjection to Egypt to that of Babylon.

20. Jeremiah Prophesies the Approaching Doom:

During this time Jeremiah was actively foretelling in streets and courts of Jerusalem (5:1, etc.) the approaching ruin of the city, messages which were received with contempt and anger by the king and court (Jeremiah 36:23). In consequence of his revolt against Babylon, bands of Chaldeans, Syrians, Moabites and Ammonites came against him (2 Kings 24:2), and his death was inglorious (2 Kings 24:6 ; Jeremiah 22:18 , 19).

21. Nebuchadnezzar Twice Takes Jerusalem (586 BC):

His son Jehoiachin, who succeeded him, went out with all his household and surrendered to the approaching Nebuchadnezzar (597), and was carried to Babylon where he passed more than 37 years (2 Kings 25:27 - 30). Jerusalem was despoiled of all its treasures and all its important inhabitants. The king of Babylon's nominee, Zedekiah, after 11 years rebelled against him, and consequently Jerusalem was besieged for a year and a half until "famine was sore in the city." On the 9th of Ab all the men of war "fled by night by the way of the gate between the two walls, which was by the king's garden," i.e. near the mouth of the Tyropeon, and the king "went by the way of the Arabah," but was overtaken and captured "in the plains of Jericho." A terrible punishment followed his faithlessness to Babylon (2 Kings 25:1 - 7). The city and the temple were despoiled and burnt; the walls of Jerusalem were broken down, and none but the poorest of the land "to be vinedressers and husbandmen" were left behind (2 Kings 25:8 ; 2 Chronicles 36:17). It is probable that the ark was removed also at this time.

22. Cyrus and the First Return (538 BC):

With the destruction of their city, the hopes of the best elements in Judah turned with longing to the thought of her restoration. It is possible that some of the remnant left in the land may have kept up some semblance of the worship of Yahweh at the temple-site. At length, however, when in 538 Cyrus the Persian became master of the Babylonian empire, among many acts of a similar nature for the shrines of Assyrian and Babylonian gods, he gave permission to Jews to return to rebuild the house of Yahweh (Ezra 1:1). Over 40,000 (Ezra 1 ; 2) under Sheshbazzar, prince of Judah (Ezra 1:8 , 11), governor of a province, returned, bringing with them the sacred vessels of the temple. The daily sacrifices were renewed and the feasts and fasts restored (Ezra 3:3 - 7), and later the foundations of the restored temple were laid (Ezra 3:10 ; 5:16), but on account of the opposition of the people of the land and the Samaritans, the building was not completed until 20 years later (Ezra 6:15).

23. Nehemiah Rebuilds the Walls:

The graphic description of the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem in 445 by Nehemiah gives us the fullest account we have of these fortifications at any ancient period. It is clear that Nehemiah set himself to restore the walls, as far as possible, in their condition before the exile. The work was done hurriedly and under conditions of danger, half the workers being armed with swords, spears and bows to protect the others, and every workman was a soldier (Nehemiah 4:13 ,16 - 21). The rebuilding took 52 days, but could not have been done at all had not much of the material lain to hand in the piles of ruined masonry. Doubtless the haste and limited resources resulted in a wall far weaker than that Nebuchadnezzar destroyed 142 years previously, but it followed the same outline and had the same general structure.

24. Bagohi Governor:

For the next 100 years we have scarcely any historical knowledge of Jerusalem. A glimpse is afforded by the papyri of Elephantine where we read of a Jewish community in Upper Egypt petitioning Bagohi, the governor of Judea, for permission to rebuild their own temple to Yahweh in Egypt; incidentally they mention that they had already sent an unsuccessful petition to Johanan the high priest and his colleagues in Jerusalem. In another document we gather that this petition to the Persian governor was granted. These documents must date about 411-407 BC. Later, probably about 350, we have somewhat ambiguous references to the destruction of Jerusalem and the captivity of numbers of Jews in the time of Artaxerxes (III) Ochus (358-337 BC).

With the battle of Issus and Alexander's Palestinian campaign (circa 332 BC), we are upon surer historical ground, though the details of the account (Ant., XI, viii, 4) of Alexander's visit to Jerusalem itself are considered of doubtful authenticity.

25. Alexander the Great:

After his death (323 BC), Palestine suffered much from its position, between the Ptolemies of Egypt and the Seleucids of Antioch. Each became in turn its suzerain, and indeed at one time the tribute appears to have been divided between them (Ant., XII, iv, 1).

26. The Ptolemaic Rule:

In 321 Ptolemy Soter invaded Palestine, and, it is said (Ant., XII, i, 1), captured Jerusalem by a ruse, entering the city on the Sabbath as if anxious to offer sacrifice. He carried away many of his Jewish prisoners to Egypt and settled them there. In the struggles between the contending monarchies, although Palestine suffered, the capital itself, on account of its isolated position, remained undisturbed, under the suzerainty of Egypt. In 217 BC, Ptolemy (IV) Philopator, after his victory over Antiochus III at Raphia, visited the temple at Jerusalem and offered sacrifices; he is reported (3 Macc 1) to have entered the "Holy of Holies." The comparative prosperity of the city during the Egyptian domination is witnessed to by Hecataeus of Abdera, who is quoted by Jos; he even puts the population of the city at 120,000, which is probably an exaggeration.

27. Antiochus the Great:

At length in 198, Antiochus the Great having conquered Coele-Syria in the epoch-making battle at Banias, the Jews of their own accord went over to him and supplied his army with plentiful provisions; they assisted him in besieging the Egyptian garrison in the AKRA (which see) (Ant., XII, iii, 3). Josephus produces letters in which Antiochus records his gratification at the reception given him by the Jews and grants them various privileges (same place) . We have an account of the prosperity of the city about this time (190-180 BC) by Jesus ben Sira in the Book of Ecclus; it is a city of crowded life and manifold activities. He refers in glowing terms to the great high priest, Simon ben Onias (226-199 BC), who (Ecclesiasticus 50:1 - 4) had repaired and fortified the temple and strengthened the walls against a siege. The letter of Aristeas, dated probably at the close of this great man's life (circa 200 BC), gives a similar picture. It is here stated that the compass of the city was 40 stadia. The very considerable prosperity and religious liberty which the Jews had enjoyed under the Egyptians were soon menaced under the new ruler; the taxes were increased, and very soon fidelity to the tenets of Judaism came to be regarded as treachery to the Seleucid rule.

28. Hellenization of the City under Antiochus Epiphanes:

Under Antiochus Epiphanes the Hellenization of the nation grew apace (2 Macc 4:9 - 12; Ant, XII, v, 1); at the request of the Hellenizing party a "place of exercise" was erected in Jerusalem (1 Macc 1:14 ; 2 Macc 4:7 f). The Gymnasium was built and was soon thronged by young priests; the Greek hat--the petasos--became the fashionable headdress in Jerusalem. The Hellenistic party, which was composed of the aristocracy, was so loud in its professed devotion to the king's wishes that it is not to be wondered at that Antiochus, who, on a visit to the city, had been received with rapturous greetings, came to think that the poor and pious who resisted him from religious motives were largely infected with leanings toward his enemies in Egypt. The actual open rupture began when tidings reached Antiochus, after a victorious though politically barren campaign in Egypt, that Jerusalem had risen in his rear on behalf of the house of Ptolemy. Jason, the renegade high priest, who had been hiding across the Jordan, had, on the false report of the death of Antiochus, suddenly returned and re-possessed himself of the city. Only the Akra remained to Syria, and this was crowded with Menelaus and those of his followers who had escaped the sword of Jason.

29. Capture of the City (170 BC):

Antiochus lost no time; he hastened (170 BC) against Jerusalem with a great army, captured the city, massacred the people and despoiled the temple (1 Macc 1:20 - 24; Ant, XII, v, 3). Two years later Antiochus, balked by Rome in Egypt (Polyb. xxix. 27; Livy xlv. 12), appears to have determined that in Jerusalem, at any rate, he would have no sympathizers with Egypt.

30. Capture of 168 BC:

He sent his chief collector of tribute (1 Macc 1:29), who attacked the city with strong force and, by means of stratagem, entered it (1 Macc 1:30). After he had despoiled it, he set it on fire and pulled down both dwellings and walls. He massacred the men, and many of the women and children he sold as slaves (1 Macc 1:31 - 35 ; 2 Macc 5:24).

31. Attempted Suppression of Judaism:

He sacrificed swine (or at least a sow) upon the holy altar, and caused the high priest himself--a Greek in all his sympathies--to partake of the impure sacrificial feasts; he tried by barbarous cruelties to suppress the ritual of circumcision (Ant., XII, v, 4). In everything he endeavored, in conjunction with the strong Hellenizing party, to organize Jerusalem as a Greek city, and to secure his position he built a strong wall, and a great tower for the Akra, and, having furnished it well with armor and victuals, he left a strong garrison (1 Macc 1:33 - 35). But the Syrians had overreached themselves this time, and the reaction against persecution and attempted religious suppression produced the great uprising of the Maccabeans.

32. The Maccabean Rebellion:

The defeat and retirement of the Syrian commander Lysias, followed by the death of Antiochus Epiphanes, led to an entire reversal of policy on the part of the Council of the boy-king, Antiochus V. A general amnesty was granted, with leave to restore the temple-worship in its ancestral forms. The following year (165 BC) Judas Maccabeus found "the sanctuary desolate, and the altar profaned, the gates burned up, and shrubs growing in the courts as in a forest . . . . and the priests' chambers pulled down" (1 Macc 4:38).

33. The Dedication of the Temple (165 BC):

He at once saw to the reconstruction of the altar and restored the temple-services, an event celebrated ever after as the "Feast of the Dedication," or chanukkah (1 Macc 4:52 - 59 ; 2 Macc 10:1 - 11 ; Ant, XII, vii, 7; compare John 10:22). Judas also "builded up Mt. Zion," i.e. the temple-hill, making it a fortress with "high walls and strong towers round about," and set a garrison in it (1 Macc 4:41 - 61).

34. Defeat of Judas and Capture of the City:

The Hellenizing party suffered in the reaction, and the Syrian garrison in the Akra, Syria's one hold on Judea, was closely invested, but though Judas had defeated three Syrian armies in the open, he could not expel this garrison. In 163 BC a great Syrian army, with a camel corps and many elephants, came to the relief of the hard-pressed garrison. Lysias, accompanied by the boy-king himself (Antiochus V), approached the city from the South via BETH-ZUR (which see). At Beth-zachariah the Jews were defeated, and Judas' brother Eleazar was slain, and Jerusalem was soon captured. The fort on Mt. Zion which surrounded the sanctuary was surrendered by treaty, but when the king saw its strength he broke his oath and destroyed the fortifications (1 Macc 6:62). But even in this desperate state Judas and his followers were saved. A certain pretender, Philip, raised a rebellion in a distant part of the empire, and Lysias was obliged to patch up a truce with the nationalist Jews more favorable to Judas than before his defeat; the garrison in the Akra remained, however, to remind the Jews that they were not independent. In 161 BC another Syrian general, Nicanor, was sent against Judas, but he was at first won over to friendship and when, later, at the instigation of the Hellenistic party, he was compelled to attack Judas, he did so with hastily raised levies and was defeated at Adasa, a little North of Jerusalem. Judas was, however, not long suffered to celebrate his triumph. A month later Bacchides appeared before Jerusalem, and in April, 161, Judas was slain in battle with him at Berea.

35. His Death (161 BC):

Both the city and the land were re-garrisoned by Syrians; nevertheless, by 152, Jonathan, Judas' brother, who was residing at Michmash, was virtual ruler of the land, and by astute negotiation between Demetrius and Alexander, the rival claimants to the throne of Antioch, Jonathan gained more than any of his family had ever done. He was appointed high priest and strategos, or deputy for the king, in Judea. He repaired the city and restored the temple-fortress with squared stones (1 Macc 10:10 - 11).

36. Jonathan's Restorations:

He made the walls higher and built up a great part of the eastern wall which had been destroyed and "repaired which was called Caphenatha" (1 Macc 12:36 - 37; Ant, XIII, v, ii); he also made a great mound between the Akra and the city to isolate the Syrian garrison (same place).

37. Surrender of City to Antiochus Sidetes (134 BC):

Simon, who succeeded Jonathan, finally captured the Akra in 139, and, according to Josephus (Ant., XIII, vi, 7), not only destroyed it, but partially leveled the very hill on which it stood (see, however, 1 Macc 14:36 , 37). John Hyrcanus, 5 years later (134 BC), was besieged in Jerusalem by Antiochus Sidetes in the 4th year of his reign; during the siege the Syrian king raised 100 towers each 3 stories high against the northern wall--possibly these may subsequently have been used for the foundations of the second wall. Antiochus was finally bought off by the giving of hostages and by heavy tribute, which Hyrcanus is said to have obtained by opening the sepulcher of David. Nevertheless the king "broke down the fortifications that encompassed the city" (Ant., XIII, viii, 2-4).

38. Hasmonean Buildings:

During the more prosperous days of the Hasmonean rulers, several important buildings were erected. There was a great palace on the western (southwestern) hill overlooking the temple (Ant., XX, viii, 11), and connected with it at one time by means of a bridge across the Tyropeon, and on the northern side of the temple a citadel--which may (see VIII, 7 above) have been the successor of one here in pre-exilic times--known as the Baris; this, later on, Herod enlarged into the Antonia (Ant., XV, xi, 4; BJ, V, v, 8).

39. Rome's Intervention:

In consequence of the quarrel of the later Hasmonean princes, further troubles fell upon the city. In 65 BC, Hyrcanus II, under the instigation of Antipas the Idumean, rebelled against his brother Aristobulus, to whom he had recently surrendered his claim to sovereignty. With the assistance of Aretas, king of the Nabateans, he besieged Aristobulus in the temple. The Roman general Scaurus, however, by order of Pompey, compelled Aretas to retire, and then lent his assistance to Aristobulus, who overcame his brother (Ant., XIV, ii, 1-3). Two years later (63 BC) Pompey, having been met by the ambassadors of both parties, bearing presents, as well as of the Pharisees, came himself to compose the quarrel of the rival factions, and, being shut out of the city, took it by storm.

40. Pompey Takes the City by Storm:

He entered the "Holy of Holies," but left the temple treasures unharmed. The walls of the city were demolished; Hyrcanus II was reinstated high priest, but Aristobulus was carried a prisoner to Rome, and the city became tributary to the Roman Empire (Ant., XIV, iv, 1-4; BJ, I, vii, 1-7). The Syrian proconsul, M. Lucinius Crassus, going upon his expedition against the Parthians in 55 BC, carried off from the temple the money which Pompey had left (Ant., XIV, vii, 1).

41. Julius Caesar Appoints Antipater Procurator (47 BC):

In 47 BC Antipater, who for 10 years had been gaining power as a self-appointed adviser to the weak Hyrcanus, was made a Roman citizen and appointed procurator in return for very material services which he had been able to render to Julius Caesar in Egypt (Ant., XIV, viii, 1, 3, 5); at the same time Caesar granted to Hyrcanus permission to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem besides other privileges (Ant., XIV, x, 5). Antipater made his eldest son, Phaselus, governor of Jerusalem, and committed Galilee to the care of his able younger son, Herod.

42. Parthian Invasion:

In 40 BC Herod succeeded his father as procurator of Judea by order of the Roman Senate, but the same year the Parthians under Pacorus and Barzapharnes captured and plundered Jerusalem (Ant., XIV, xiii, 3,1) and re-established Antigonus (Jewish Wars, I, xiii, 13). Herod removed his family and treasures to Massada and, having been appointed king of Judea by Antony, returned, after various adventures, in 37 BC. Assisted by Sosius, the Roman proconsul, he took Jerusalem by storm after a 5 months siege; by the promise of liberal reward he restrained the soldiers from sacking the city (Ant., XIV, xvi, 2-3).

43. Reign of Herod the Great (37-4 BC):

During the reign of this great monarch Jerusalem assumed a magnificence surpassing that of all other ages. In 24 BC the king built his vast palace in the upper city on the southwestern hill, near where today are the Turkish barracks and the Armenian Quarter. He rebuilt the fortress to the North of the temple--the ancient Baris--on a great scale with 4 lofty corner towers, and renamed it the Antonia in honor of his patron. He celebrated games in a new theater, and constructed a hippodrome (Jewish Wars, II, iii, 1) or amphitheater (Antiquities, XV, viii, 1).

44. Herod's Great Buildings:

He must necessarily have strengthened and repaired the walls, but such work was outshone by the 4 great towers which he erected, Hippicus, Pharsel and Mariamne, near the present Jaffa Gate--the foundations of the first two Great are supposed to be incorporated in the present so-called "Tower of David"--and the lofty octagonal tower, Psephinus, farther to the Northwest. The development of Herod's plans for the reconstruction of the temple was commenced in 19 BC, but they were not completed till 64 AD (John 2:20 ; Matthew 24:1 , 2 ; Luke 21:5 , 6). The sanctuary itself was built by 1,000 specially trained priests within a space of 18 months (11-10 BC). The conception was magnificent, and resulted in a mass of buildings of size and beauty far surpassing anything that had stood there before. Practically all the remains of the foundations of the temple-enclosure now surviving in connection with the Charam belong to this period. In 4 BC--the year of the Nativity--occurred the disturbances following upon the destruction of the Golden Eagle which Herod had erected over the great gate of the temple, and shortly afterward Herod died, having previously shut up many of the leading Jews in the hippodrome with orders that they should be slain when he passed away (Jewish Wars, I, xxxiii, 6). The accession of Archelaus was signalized by Passover riots which ended in the death of 3,000, an after-result of the affair of the Golden Eagle.

45. Herod Archelaus (4 BC-6 AD):

Thinking that order had been restored, Archelaus set out for Rome to have his title confirmed. During his absence Sabinus, the Roman procurator, by mismanagement and greed, raised the city about his ears, and the next Passover was celebrated by a massacre, street fighting and open robbery. Varus, the governor of Syria, who had hastened to the help of his subordinate, suppressed the rebellion with ruthless severity and crucified 2,000 Jews. Archelaus returned shortly afterward as ethnarch, an office which he retained until his exile in 6 AD. During the procuratorship of Coponius (6-10 AD) another Passover riot occurred in consequence of the aggravating conduct of some Samaritans.

46. Pontius Pilate:

During the procuratorship of Pontius Pilate (26-37 AD) there were several disturbances, culminating in a riot consequent upon his taking some of the "corban" or sacred offerings of the temple for the construction of an aqueduct (Ant., XVIII, iii, 2)--probably part at least of the "lowlevel aqueduct" (see VII, 15, above). Herod Agrippa I enclosed the suburbs, which had grown up North of the second wall and of the temple, by what Josephus calls the "Third Wall" (see V, above).

47. King Agrippa:

His son, King Agrippa, built--about 56 AD--a large addition to the old Hasmonean palace, from which he could overlook the temple area. This act was a cause of offense to the Jews who built a wall on the western boundary of the Inner Court to shut off his view. In the quarrel which ensued the Jews were successful in gaining the support of Nero (Ant., XX, viii, 11). In 64 AD the long rebuilding of the temple-courts, which had been begun in 19 BC, was concluded. The 18,000 workmen thrown out of employment appear to have been given "unemployed work" in "paving the city with white stone" (Ant., XX, ix, 6-7).

48. Rising against Florus and Defeat of Gallus:

Finally the long-smoldering discontent of the Jews against the Romans burst forth into open rebellion under the criminal incompetence of Gessius Florus, 66 AD (Ant., XX, xi, 1). Palaces and public buildings were fired by the angered multitude, and after but two days' siege, the Antonia itself was captured, set on fire and its garrison slain (Jewish Wars, II, xvii, 6-7). Cestius Gallus, hastening from Syria, was soon engaged in a siege of the city. The third wall was captured and the suburb BEZETHA (which see) burnt, but, when about to renew the attack upon the second wall, Gallus appears to have been seized with panic, and his partial withdrawal developed into an inglorious retreat in which he was pursued by the Jews down the pass to the Beth-horons as far as Antipatris (Jewish Wars, II, xix).

49. The City Besieged by Titus (70 AD):

This victory cost the Jews dearly in the long run, as it led to the campaign of Vespasian and the eventual crushing of all their national hopes. Vespasian commenced the conquest in the north, and advanced by slow and certain steps. Being recalled to Rome as emperor in the midst of the war, the work of besieging and capturing the city itself fell to his son Titus. None of the many calamities which had happened to the city are to be compared with this terrible siege. In none had the city been so magnificent, its fortifications so powerful, its population so crowded. It was Passover time, but, in addition to the crowds assembled for this event, vast numbers had hurried there, flying from the advancing Roman army. The loss of life was enormous; refugees to Titus gave 600,000 as the number dead (Jewish Wars, V, xiii, 7), but this seems incredible. The total population today within the walls cannot be more than 20,000, and the total population of modern Jerusalem, which covers a far greater area than that of those days, cannot at the most liberal estimate exceed 80,000. Three times this, or, say, a quarter of a million, seems to be the utmost that is credible, and many would place the numbers at far less.

50. Party Divisions within the Besieged Walls:

The siege commenced on the 14th of Nisan, 70 AD, and ended on the 8th of Elul, a total of 134 days. The city was distracted by internal feuds. Simon held the upper and lower cities; John of Gischala, the temple and "Ophel"; the Idumeans, introduced by the Zealots, fought only Walls for themselves, until they relieved the city of their terrors. Yet another party, too weak to make its counsels felt, was for peace with Rome, a policy which, if taken in time, would have found in Titus a spirit of reason and mercy. The miseries of the siege and the destruction of life and property were at least as much the work of the Jews themselves as of their conquerors. On the 15th day of the siege the third wall (Agrippa's), which had been but hastily finished upon the approach of the Romans, was captured; the second wall was finally taken on the 24th day; on the 72nd day the Antonia fell, and 12 days later the daily sacrifice ceased. On the 105th day--the ominous 9th of Ab--the temple and the lower city were burnt, and the last day found the whole city in flames.

51. Capture and Utter Destruction of the City:

Only the three great towers of Herod, Hippicus, Pharsel and Mariamne, with the western walls, were spared to protect the camp of the Xth Legion which was left to guard the site, and "in order to demonstrate to posterity what kind of city it was and how well fortified"; the rest of the city was dug up to its foundations (Jewish Wars, VII, i, 1).

52. Rebellion of Bar-Cochba:

For 60 years after its capture silence reigns over Jerusalem. We know that the site continued to be garrisoned, but it was not to any extent rebuilt. In 130 AD it was visited by Hadrian, who found but few buildings standing. Two years later (132-35 AD) occurred the last great rebellion of the Jews in the uprising of Bar-Cocha ("son of a star"), who was encouraged by the rabbi Akiba. With the suppression of this last effort for freedom by Julius Severus, the remaining traces of Judaism were stamped out, and it is even said (the Jerusalem Talmud, Ta`anith 4) that the very site of the temple was plowed up by T. Annius Rufus; An altar of Jupiter was placed upon the temple-site, and Jews were excluded from Jerusalem on pain of death.

53. Hadrian Builds AElia Capitolina:

In 138 Hadrian rebuilt the city, giving it the name AElia Capitolina. The line of the Southern wall of AElia was probably determined by the southern fortification of the great Roman legionary camp on the western (southwestern) hill, and it is probable that it was the general line of the existing southern wall. At any rate, we know that the area occupied by the coenaculum and the traditional "Tomb of David" was outside the walls in the 4th century. An equestrian statue of Hadrian was placed on the site of the "Holy of Holies" (Jerome, Commentary on Isaiah 2:8; Matthew 24:15). An inscription now existing in the southern wall of the temple-area, in which occurs the name of Hadrian, may have belonged to this monument, while a stone head, discovered in the neighborhood of Jerusalem some 40 years ago, may have belonged to the statue. Either Hadrian himself, or one of the Antonine emperors, erected a temple of Venus on the northwestern hill, where subsequently was built the Church of the Holy Sepulchre (Euseb., Life of Constantine, III, 36). The habit of pilgrimage to the holy sites, which appears to have had its roots far back in the 2nd century (see Turner, Journal of Theological Studies, I, 551, quoted by Sanday, Sacred Sites of the Gospels, 75-76), seems to have increasingly flourished in the next two centuries; beyond this we know little of the city.

54. Constantine Builds the Church of the Anastasis:

In 333 AD, by order of Constantine, the new church of the Anastasis, marking the supposed site of the Holy Sepulchre, was begun. The traditions regarding this site and the Holy Cross alleged to have been found there, are recorded some time after the events and are of doubtful veracity. The building must have been magnificent, and covered a considerably larger area than that of the existing church. In 362 Julian is said to have attempted to rebuild the temple, but the work was interrupted by an explosion. The story is doubtful.

At some uncertain date before 450 the coenaculum and "Church of the Holy Zion" were incorporated within the walls. This is the condition depicted in the Madeba Mosaic and also that described by Eucherius who, writing between 345-50 AD, states that the circuit of the walls "now receives within itself Mt. Zion, which was once outside, and which, lying on the southern side, overhangs the city like a citadel." It is possible this was the work of the emperor Valentinian who is known to have done some reconstruction of the walls.

55. The Empress Eudoxia Rebuilds the Walls:

In 450 the empress Eudoxia, the widow of Theodosius II, took up her residence in Jerusalem and rebuilt the walls upon their ancient lines, bringing the whole of the southwestern hill, as well as the Pool of Siloam, within the circuit (Evagarius, Hist. Eccles., I, 22). At any rate, this inclusion of the pool existed in the walls described by Antoninus Martyr in 560 AD, and it is confirmed by Bliss's work (see above VI, 4). She also built the church of Stephen, that at the Pool of Siloam and others.

56. Justinian:

The emperor Justinian, who was perhaps the greatest of the Christian builders, erected the great Church of Mary, the remains of which are now considered by some authorities to be incorporated in the el Aqsa Mosque; he built also a "Church of Sophia" in the "Pretorian," i.e. on the site of the Antonia (see, however, PRAETORIUM), and a hospital to the West of the temple. The site of the temple itself appears to have remained in ruins down to the 7th century.

57. Chosroes II Captures the City:

In 614 Palestine was conquered by the Persian Chosroes II, and the Jerusalem churches, including that of the Holy Sepulchre, were destroyed, an event which did much to prepare the way for the Moslem architects of half a century later, who freely used the columns of these ruined churches in the building of the "Dome of the Rock."

58. Heracleus Enters It in Triumph:

In 629 Heracleus, having meanwhile made peace with the successor of Chosroes II, reached Jerusalem in triumph, bearing back the captured fragment of the cross. He entered the city through the "Golden Gate," which indeed is believed by many to have reached its present form through his restorations. The triumph of Christendom was but short. Seven years earlier had occurred the historic flight of Mohammed from Mecca (the Hegira), and in 637 the victorious followers of the Prophet appeared in the Holy City. After a short siege, it capitulated, but the khalif Omar treated the Christians with generous mercy.

59. Clemency of Omar:

The Christian sites were spared, but upon the temple-site, which up to this had apparently been occupied by no important Christian building but was of peculiar sanctity to the Moslems through Mohammed's alleged visions there, a wooden mosque was erected, capable of accommodating 3,000 worshippers. This was replaced in 691 AD by the magnificent Kubbet es Sakah], or "Dome of the Rock," built by `Abd'ul Malek, the 10th khalif. For some centuries the relations of the Christians and Moslems appear to have been friendly: the historian el Muqaddasi, writing in 985, describes the Christians and Jews as having the upper hand in Jerusalem. In 969 Palestine passed into the power of the Egyptian dynasty, and in 1010 her ruler, the mad Hakim, burnt many of the churches, which, however, were restored in a poor way.

60. The Seljuk Turks and Their Cruelties:

In 1077 Isar el Atsis, a leader of the Seljuk Turks conquered Palestine from the North, drove out the Egyptians and massacred 3,000 of the inhabitants of Jerusalem. The cruelty of the Turks--in contrast, be it noted, with the conduct of the Arab Moslems--was the immediate cause of the Crusades. In 1098 the city was retaken by the Egyptian Arabs, and the following year was again captured after a 40 days' seige by the soldiers of the First Crusade, and Godfrey de Bouillon became the first king. Great building activity marked the next 80 peaceful years of Latin rule: numbers of churches were built, but, until toward the end of this period, the walls were neglected.

61. Crusaders Capture the City in 1099:

In 1177 they were repaired, but 10 years later failed to resist the arms of the victorious Saladin. The city surrendered, but City the inhabitants were spared. In 1192 Saladin repaired the walls, but in 1219 they were dismantled by orders of the sultan of Damascus. In 1229 the emperor Frederick II of Germany obtained the Holy City by treaty, on condition that he did not restore the fortifications, a stipulation which, being broken by the inhabitants 10 years later, brought down upon them the vengeance of the emir of Kerak. Nevertheless, in 1243 the city was again restored to the Christians unconditionally.

62. The Kharizimians:

The following year, however, the Kharizimian Tartars--a wild, savage horde from Central Asia--burst into Palestine, carrying destruction before them; they seized Jerusalem, massacred the people, and rifled the tombs of the Latin kings. Three years later they were ejected from Palestine by the Egyptians who in their turn retained it until, in 1517, they were conquered by the Ottoman Turks, who still hold it. The greatest of their sultans, Suleiman the Magnificent, built the present walls in 1542.

63. Ottoman Turks Obtain the City (1517 AD):

In 1832 Mohammed Ali with his Egyptian forces came and captured the city, but 2 years later the fellahin rose against his rule and for a time actually gained possession of the city, except the citadel, making their entrance through the main drain. The besieged citadel was relieved by the arrival of Ibrahim Pasha from Egypt with reinforcements. The city and land were restored to the Ottoman Turks by the Great Powers in 1840.


1. Jews and "Zionism":

The modern city of Jerusalem has about 75,000 inhabitants, of whom over two-thirds are Jews. Until about 50 years ago the city was confined within its 16th-century walls, the doors of its gates locked every night, and even here there were considerable areas unoccupied. Since then, and particularly during the last 25 years, there has been a rapid growth of suburbs to the North, Northwest, and West of the old city. This has been largely due to the steady stream of immigrant Jews from every part of the world, particularly from Russia, Romania, Yemin, Persia, Bokhara, the Caucasus, and from all parts of the Turkish empire. This influx of Jews, a large proportion of whom are extremely poor, has led to settlements or "colonies" of various classes of Jews being erected all over the plateau to the North--an area never built upon before--but also on other sides of the city. With the exception of the Bokhara Colony, which has some fine buildings and occupies a lofty and salubrious situation, most of the settlements are mean cottages or ugly almshouses. With the exception of a couple of hospitals, there is no Jewish public building of any architectural pretensions. The "Zionist" movement, which has drawn so many Jews to Jerusalem, cannot be called a success, as far as this city is concerned, as the settlers and their children as a rule either steadily deteriorate physically and morally--from constant attacks of malaria, combined with pauperism and want of work--or, in the case of the energetic and enlightened, they emigrate--to America especially; this emigration has been much stimulated of late by the new law whereby Jews and Christians must now, like Moslems, do military service.

The foreign Christian population represents all nations and all sects; the Roman church is rapidly surpassing all other sects or religions in the importance of their buildings. The Russians are well represented by their extensive enclosure, which includes a large cathedral, a hospital, extensive hospice in several blocks, and a handsome residence for the consul-general, and by the churches and other buildings on the Mount of Olives. The Germans have a successful colony belonging to the "Temple" sect to the West of Jerusalem near the railway station, and are worthily represented by several handsome buildings, e.g. the Protestant "Church of the Redeemer," built on the site and on the ground plan of a fine church belonging to the Knights of John, the new (Roman Catholic) Church of the Dormition on "Mount Zion," with an adjoining Benedictine convent, a very handsome Roman Catholic hospice outside the Damascus Gate, the Kaiserin Augusta Victoria Sanatorium on the Mount of Olives, and a Protestant Johanniter Hospice in the city, a large general hospital and a leper hospital, a consulate and two large schools. In influence, both secular and religious, the Germans have rapidly gained ground in the last 2 decades. British influence has much diminished, relatively.

2. Christian Buildings and Institutions:

The British Ophthalmic Hospital, belonging to the "Order of the Knights of John," the English Mission Hospital, belonging to the London Jews Society, the Bishop Gobat's School and English College connected with the Church Missionary Society, 3 Anglican churches, of which the handsome George's Collegiate Church adjoins the residence of the Anglican bishop, and a few small schools comprise the extent of public buildings connected with British societies. France and the Roman Catholic church are worthily represented by the Dominican monastery and seminary connected with the handsome church of Stephen--rebuilt on the plan of an old Christian church--by the Ratisbon (Jesuit) Schools, the Hospital of Louis, the hospice and Church of Augustine, and the monastery and seminary of the "white fathers" or Freres de la mission algerienne, whose headquarters center round the beautifully restored Church of Anne. Not far from here are the convent and school of the Saeurs de Sion, at the Ecce Homo Church. Also inside the walls near the New Gate is the residence of the Latin Patriarch--a cardinal of the Church of Rome--with a church, the school of the Freres de la doctrine chretienne, and the schools, hospital and convent of the Franciscans, who are recognized among their co-religionists as the "parish priests" in the city, having been established there longer than the numerous other orders.

All the various nationalities are under their respective consuls and enjoy extra-territorial rights. Besides the Turkish post-office, which is very inefficiently managed, the Austrians, Germans, French, Russians and Italians all have post-offices open to all, with special "Levant" stamps. The American mail is delivered at the French post-office. There are four chief banks, French, German, Ottoman and Anglo-Palestinian (Jewish). As may be supposed, on account of the demand for land for Jewish settlements or for Christian schools or convents, the price of such property has risen enormously. Unfortunately in recent years all owners of land--and Moslems have not been slow to copy the foreigners--have taken to enclosing their property with high and unsightly walls, greatly spoiling both the walks around the city and the prospects from many points of view. The increased development of carriage traffic has led to considerable dust in the dry season, and mud in winter, as the roads are metaled with very soft limestone. The Jerus-Jaffa Railway (a French company), 54 miles long, which was opened in 1892, has steadily increased its traffic year by year, and is now a very paying concern. There is no real municipal water-supply, and no public sewers for the new suburbs--though the old city is drained by a leaking, ill-constructed medieval sewer, which opens just below the Jewish settlement in the Kidron and runs down the Wady en Nauru. A water-supply, new Sewers, electric trams and electric lights for the streets, are all much-talked-of improvements. There are numerous hotels, besides extensive accommodations in the religious hospices, and no less than 15 hospitals and asylums.


This is enormous, but of very unequal value and much of it out of date. For all purposes the best book of reference is Jerusalem from the Earliest Times to AD 70, 2 volumes, by Principal G.A. Smith. It contains references to all the literature. To this book and to its author it is impossible for the present writer adequately to express his indebtedness, and no attempt at acknowledgment in detail has been made in this article. In supplement of the above, Jerusalem, by Dr. Selah Merrill, and Jerusalem in Bible Times, by Professor Lewis B. Paton, will be found useful. The latter is a condensed account, especially valuable for its illustrations and its copious references. Of the articles in the recent Bible Dictionaries on Jerusalem, that by Conder in HDB is perhaps the most valuable. Of guide-books, Baedeker's Guide to Palestine and Syria (1911), by Socin and Benzinger, and Barnabe Meistermann's (R.C.) New Guide to the Holy Land (1909), will be found useful; also Hanauer's Walks about Jerusalem.

On Geology, Climate and Water-Supply:
Hull's "Memoir on Physical Geography and Geology of Arabian Petrea, Palestine, and Adjoining Districts," PEF; and Blankenhorn," Geology of the Nearer Environs of Jerusalem," ZDPV, 1905; Chaplin, "Climate of Jerusalem," PEFS, 1883; Glaisher, "Meteorol. Observations in Palestine," special pamphlet of the Palestine Exploration Fund; Hilderscheid, "Die Niederschlagsverhaltnisse Palestine in alter u. neuer Zeit," ZDPV (1902); Huntington, Palestine and Its Transformation (1911); Andrew Watt, "Climate in Hebron," etc., Journal of the Scottish Meteorological Society (1900-11); Schick, "Die Wasserversorgung der Stadt Jerusalem," ZDPV, 1878; Wilson "Water Supply of Jerusalem," Proceedings of the Victoria Institute, 1906; Masterman, in Biblical World, 1905.

On Archaeology and Topography:
PEF, volume on Jerusalem, with accompanying maps and plans; Clermont-Ganneau, Archaeological Researches, I, 1899 (PEF); William, Holy City (1849); Robinson, Biblical Researches (1856); Wilson, Recovery of Jerusalem (1871); Warren Underground Jerusalem (1876); Vincent, Underground Jerusalem (1911); Guthe, "Ausgrabungen in Jerusalem," ZDPV, V; Bliss and Dickie, Excavations in Jerusalem (1894-97); Sanday, Sacred Sites of the Gospels (1903); Mitchell, "The Wall of Jerusalem according to the Book of Neh," JBL (1903); Wilson, Golgotha and the Holy Sepulchre (1906); Kuemmel, Materialien z. Topographie des alten Jerusalem; also numerous reports in the PEFS; Zeitschrift des deutschen Palestine Vereins; and the Revue biblique.

On History:
Besides Bible, Apocrypha, works of Josephus, and History of Tacitus: Besant and Palmer, History of Jerusalem; Conder, Judas Maccabeus and Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem; Le Strange, Palestine under the Moslems (1890); C.F. Kent, Biblical Geography and History (1911). Bevan, Jerusalem under the High-Priests; Watson, The Story of Jerusalem.



bible commentary, bible history, bible reference, bible study, city of david, city of God, capital of the kingdom of judah, city of judah, define, holy city, jerusalem, list of gates, salem, zion



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