Pilgrims who visited the Holy Land between the IV and VII century

The Holy City of Jerusalem. Panoramic view from the Mount of Olives

Panoramic view of Jerusalem

Mount Sion - detail
The Temple Mount
Getsemane - detail

The Temple Mount is certainly the heart of Jerusalem as a Holy city. However it was nothing more than a modest hill, situated at the outskirts of ancient Jebus, when God picked it up as the chosen place for his Holy Presence. The first Temple, built by Salomon (2 Kings 6-8), underwent destruction by the Babylonian army in 586 B.C. The second temple was erected by Zerubbabel and the rest of Israel after their coming back from the Babylonian exile (520-515 B.C.). King Herod and his sons rebuilt and enlarged it with a great effort (19 B.C. - 37 A.D). The Romans razed it definitely to the ground in 70 A.D. at the end the first Jewish revolt against their rule. The octagonal building crowned by a golden cupola, which is seen today, is the work of the Moslem caliph Abd el-Malik (end of the 7th century A.D). For the Christians the heart of Jerusalem, nay of the entire world, is the place of the Calvary and the Holy Sepulcher, laying beneath another (lead-covered) cupola, scarcely seen in the middle of the houses of old Jerusalem.

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Project, design, research and realization carried out by Eugenio Alliata ofm,
assistant professor of Christian Archaeology at SBF-Jerusalem.
Updated Thu, Dec 9, 1999 at 05:17 by John Abela ofm - Space by courtesy of Christus Rex
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