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The City of David, Siloe. Aceldama - October 27, 2003

Panoramic view of Mt Zion (left) and of the City of David (center) from the south-east. Click to enlarge.

Looking at the archaeological remains of Ancient Jerusalem. Excavations by Macalister (1923-1925), Kenyon (1961-1967) and Shilo (1978-1986).

The walls of the Canaanite city from the Middle Bronze Period (1800-1400 b.C.), and the Israelite walls (VIII cent. b. C.). Kenyon excavation.

King David's conquest of Jerusalem is related in 2Sam 5: 6-9; 1Chr 11:4-9

The Arab village of Silwan, built upon the Israelite Necropolis.

... near the upper opening of "Warren's shaft". Could this have been the "sinnor" of 2 Samuel 5:8?

Steps descending to the Gihon spring (Arabic: Ain Umm al-Daraj, Ain Sitti Mariam). The water is then channelled through a complex of rock-cut tunnels to the pool of Siloe.

Underground path of Hezekia's Tunnel (VIII cent. b.C.): cf. 2Kings 20,20 e 2Chronicles 32,30. The green arrow points to Warren's Shaft. The blue arrow points to the spring. The yellow arrow shows where the excavators' meeting point was. The red arrow points to the actual spot where the Hebrew Inscription was found. Its translation is as follows:

"…when the tunnel was driven through. And this was the way in which it was cut through: -- While were still… axes, each man toward his fellow, and while there were still three cubits to be cut through, there was heard the voice of a man calling to his fellow, for there was an overlap in the rock on the right. And when the tunnel was driven through, the quarrymen hewed the rock, each man toward his fellow, axe against axe; and the water flowed from the spring toward the reservoir for 1200 cubits, and the height of the rock above the heads of the quarrymen was 100 cubits".

The water gathers in a small pool at the end of Hezekia's tunnel. Here pilgrims are used to recall the miracle of the healing of a blind man (Jn 9,1-41).

This stone pillar, still in place, is one of the many stones which were part of a Roman Temple (Tetranymphum) and/or a Byzantine Church of Siloe.

The Pool of Siloe (Arabic: Birkat al-Hamra). The Greek-Orthodox Church owns the larger pool, where a variety of trees and vegetables are grown. The Muslims own the smaller pool near the mosque.

The Gehenna or "Valley of (the sons of) Hinnom" (Arabic: Wadi er-Rababeh) lies between Mount Zion and the Abu Tor neighborhood.

Behind the Greek-Orthodox monastery of St. Onophrius are the remains of a vaulted crusader bulding where dead pilgrims used to be buried together. Its name, "Aceldama", comes from the field bought with the money used for the betrayal of Christ (Matthew 27,3-10; Acts 1,18-20).

Panoramic view of the Gehenna Valley, which joins to the Kedron Valley. Click to enlarge and then scroll to the right.

External Links

 SBF main, Index

Biblical Escursions


1. City Walls (North)

2. City Walls (South)

3. City of David

4. Ophel

5. Jewish Quarter

6. Mount Zion

7. Armenian Quarter

8. Holy Sepulchre

9. Via Dolorosa

10. Probatica

11. North Jerusalem

12. Gethsemane

13. Mount of Olives

14. Ascension, Bethphage, Bethany

15. West Jerusalem

16. Ain Karem

17. Bethlehem

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Created/updated: Sunday, December 16, 2001 by J. Abela ofm / E. Alliata ofm
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