By June 30, 2008 Read More →

Visualizing First Temple Jerusalem, Rivka Gonen, Biblical Archaeology Review (15:3), May/Jun 1989.

Kidron Valley

Kidron Valley

Visitors to Jerusalem understandably are often confused by the jumbled and disconnected layers of the past that exist side by side with the teeming modern city. Jerusalem at the time of the First Temple—the Jerusalem of the Bible, the Jerusalem of Solomon, the Jerusalem whose Temple was destroyed in 586 B.C. and whose residents were carried off to captivity in Babylon—this Jerusalem exists only in fragments today. These fragments, excavated in recent years, may be seen in various places but to appreciate them requires help. Now these excavated remains may be viewed in relation to each other thanks to a scale model on display in the Jewish Quarter of the Old City.

Aided by a team of archaeologists, architects, guides and the designer, I was in charge of planning the First Temple period model. We started by reviewing three other models that depict Jerusalem during later eras. One, built by Professor Michael Avi-Yonah, is of Jerusalem at the time of Herod the Great, before the Temple’s destruction by the Romans in 70 A.D. Based on literary and archaeological evidence, this model, on view at the Holy Land Hotel, reconstructs the city as it looked 2,000 years ago.

Read Visualizing First Temple Jerusalem in the online Biblical Archaeology Society Library.

Comments are closed.