Eilat Mazar

The Temple Mount Excavations in Jerusalem 1968-1978 by Benjamin Mazar: Final Reports

Volume IV (The Tenth Legion in Aelia Capitolina)

Jerusalem: Institute of Archaeology, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 2011

 

This volume is the fourth of the final reports on the archaeological excavations directed by Prof. Benjamin Mazar for ten continuous years (1968 - 1978) at the foot of the southern wall and adjacent to the southwestern corner of the Temple Mount enclosure. The excavations were conducted on behalf of the Institute of Archaeology of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the Israel Exploration Society, and the Israel Department of Antiquities and Museums (now the Israel Antiquities Authority).

The publication project of the Temple Mount excavations aims to publish complete and comprehensive excavation reports divided according to historical period. The present volume, the fourth, deals with the Late Roman period, from the destruction of the Second Temple by the Romans (70 CE) until Constantine the Great took control of the eastern Roman Empire (324 CE) and Christianity became the predominant religion. In 130 CE, the emperor Hadrian (117 - 138 CE) founded a pagan Roman city on the ruins of Jerusalem, calling it Aelia Capitolina. After its establishment, the main camp of the Tenth Legion apparently moved to the area near the southwestern corner of the Temple Mount, also occupying the Temple Mount enclosure itself. The remains of the relatively well-preserved structures that most probably belonged to the legion, and were preserved to an extraordinary height of four meters, were revealed in the Temple Mount Excavations.

 

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