Vestmuren («Klagemuren») er kalla an icon of contemporary Jerusalem. Den blir gjerne omtalt som viktigaste heilage staden i jødedomen i dag.
Litt sør for den opne plassen ved Vestmuren, er muren ein del av ei arkeologisk utstilling. Her ligg framleis store steinar som ein gong har falle ned. «Alle» reknar med at dette skjedde då romarane øydela tempelet og byen i år 70. Nå hevdar ein israelsk arkeolog at muren fall først 300 år seinare, og då på grunn av jordskjelv. Les meir om dette under bildet.
Foto: Arne Berge 2013
Haaretz har i dag ein interessant artikkel som viser at det er ulike synspunkt blant arkeologiske ekspertar på kva tid Vestmuren fall.
Professor Shimon Gibson hevdar nå at desse murane fell saman i jordskjelvet i år 363, altså ca 300 år etter romarane sine øydeleggingar, i den bysantinske (kristne) tida. Men dette blir sterkt tilbakevist av professor Ronny Reich. Etter første gongs gjennomlesing må eg seia at eg syns Reich argumenterer godt for det tradisjonelle synet.
Les tidlegare notat om Vestmuren – og fleire tidlegare notat her.
Archaeologist: Western Wall stones result of earthquake, not Roman demolition
(…) The Old City in Jerusalem is full of archaeological attractions from all periods of its life. But one of its most emotional – certainly for Jewish visitors – is the pile of huge stones lying next to the southern section of the Western Wall, in the Jerusalem Archaeological Garden and Davidson Center, next to the Western Wall plaza.
Information signs, tour guides, books and archaeologists explain that these stones fell to the street during the destruction of the Holy Temple, with the end of the Great Revolt in 70 C.E., and that they are the most palpable testimony to the destruction.
However, professor of archaeology Shimon Gibson suggests these walls stayed in place nearly 300 years after the destruction, and fell not by the hands of man but in a major earthquake that wracked Jerusalem in 363 C.E. He presented this thesis for the first time at Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan, last week, and the theory has aroused disputes among senior archaeologists.
Prof. Benjamin Mazar conducted the first digs to uncover the fallen stones, in the 1970s. There has been a consensus since then that the giant stones lying on the ground are from the destruction of the Holy Temple.
“It doesn’t hold water,” he states. Reich’s strongest evidence against the theory is a layer of mud or dirt several centimeters thick, which was discovered underneath the fallen stones.
‘The rockslide doesn’t lie on the street. It lies on a layer of sediment 3-5 centimeters thick,” he says. “We cleaned this layer very exactingly, and we found 120-125 coins. It is sediment that collected on the street after it went out of use and before the collapse – I suppose in the first winters after the destruction. The last coin we found is from the fourth year of the rebellion, that is to say 69 C.E. If Gibson is right, could it be that for 290 years, no other coins were collected under the pile of stones? What happened between 70 and 363?”
Reich does not assert that legionnaires destroyed the wall immediately after the destruction of the Temple but perhaps a few years later, even in honor of the visit of Emperor Hadrian in 130 C.E. But he is sure they did not stay standing through the fourth century.
“Size matters in archaeology,” says Reich about the earthquake. “It’s true buildings collapse, but you are talking about the walls of Temple Mount. That’s not just another structure.”