City of David: The Birthplace of Jerusalem

Jul 20, 2014  |  By Arik Barel

17430850-king-david-monument-jerusalem-israelThe City of David is the site of the birthplace of Jerusalem, where 3,000 years ago King David captured the city from the Jebusites, turning it into the capital of what would soon become an Israelite empire. Today, this same City of David is an extraordinary archeology wonderland, where each discovery is an authentic testament to the history of ancient Jerusalem.

Excavations began in the 19th century, and since then have come to light some fascinating discoveries, including various waterways, cisterns and wells, which illustrate how residents survived in the walled area during sieges and wars. One of the most famous of these is the tunnel of Shiloh, a 533-meter-long tunnel carved out during the reign of King Hezkiyahu after being beseiged by the Assyrian army. This feat of ancient engineering extends from the city to the well at Shiloh, and visitors can walk through the tunnel which is partially filled with water, and come out at the pools of Shiloh.

In December 2007, the Israeli Antiquities Authority uncovered an edifice in the City of David thought to be from the Second Temple period. It contained a massive foundation with high walls, vaults, water systems and ritual baths, a testimony to the status and wealth of some of the city’s residents. According to ancient historian Josephus Flavius, this plalace most likely belonged to royal family of Queen Helena of Adiabene.

Among other amazing relics unearthed have been gold jewelry, pottery and stone vessels, and hundreds of ancient coins that date to the end of the Second Temple period and the end of the Great Revolt against the Romans in 69-70 CE.

Can’t make it to the City of David today? Bring the City of David to you. Each unique piece from this profoundly beautiful collection was inspired and designed based on the actual discoveries made during these excavations.

Category  : Jewish History, Jewish Jewelry   

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