Dome of the Rock
Who Built it?
|Red Heifer Bridge||
|Trumpeting Stone and Xystus||Akra Found||Solomon Palace||Temple Mount Walls||Temple Diagrams||Herod's
|Early Temple Illustration||
Temple Mount Chronology
|Maps of Early Explorers||Temple Water System||
|Five Location Theories|
Dr. Doron Ben-Ami, Yana Tchekhanovets and Salome Cohen, excavation directors on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority believe they have found the runs of the Akra (Acra). The Akra was a fortified Hellenistic citadel erected in Jerusalem by the Seleucid conquerors, after they first destroyed the city in 168 BC. The compound was torn down by the Maccabee rebels fighting the Greek rulers in the 2nd century BC. They have found “remains of fortifications, weapons, ceramics and coins from the Hellenistic era. The catapults at the site were engraved with a pitchfork, the emblem of King Antiochus IV. They discovered numerous coins ranging in date from the reign of Antiochus IV to that of Antiochus VII and the large number of wine jars that were imported from the Aegean region to Jerusalem, which were discovered at the site.” These items “provide evidence of the citadel’s chronology, as well as the non-Jewish identity of its inhabitants”.They believe “the archaeological finds indicate the establishment of a well-fortified stronghold that was constructed on the high bedrock cliff overlooking the steep slopes of the City of David hill.”
The Akra citadel was peopled by a Seleucid garrison with Hellenized Jews who supported the Seleucid rulers. From there they controlled the approach to the Temple cutting off the Temple from the old City of David.
"…and when he had overthrown the city walls, [Epiphanes] built a citadel [Greek: Acra] in the lower part of the city, for the place was high, and overlooked the temple; on which account he fortified it with high walls and towers, and put into it a garrison of Macedonians. However, in that citadel dwelt the impious and wicked part of the multitude, from whom it proved that the citizens suffered many and sore calamities.” -Antiquities of the Jews book 12 chap 5:4
Locating Solomon's Temple
by Norma Robertson
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