Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Wall dating back to Second Temple unearthed in Jerusalem

Remains of the southern wall of Jerusalem that was built by the Hasmonean Kings during the Second Temple period have been uncovered on Mount Zion, the Israel Antiquities Authority announced Wednesday.

The 2,100-year-old wall, which was destroyed during the Great Revolt against the Romans that began in 66 CE, is located on Mount Zion just outside the present-day walls of the Old City of Jerusalem and abuts a Catholic cemetery which was built in the last century and where the Righteous Gentile Oskar Schindler is buried.
The sturdy wall, which is believed to have run 6 km around the Old City, was previously exposed by an American archeologist at the end of the 19th century, the state run archeological body said.
The Israeli archeologist who carried out the year and half long ongoing excavation also uncovered the remains of a city wall from the Byzantine Period (324-640 CE) which was built on top of the Second Temple wall hundreds of years later at a time when ancient Jerusalem reached its largest size after its southward expansion.

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