September 2nd, 2014

Jerusalem – sacred land

Jerusalem – one of the oldest cities in the world. Here reigns over all history itself: this land went back 4000let Abraham 3000let ago – King David 2000let ago – Christ, 1000 years ago, the Crusaders … It was in Jerusalem are the origins of the three major monotheistic religions of the world – Judaism, Christianity and Islam.

The Hebrew word "Jerusalem" means "place of peace", and the Arabic name for the city – Al-Quds – "holiness." Indeed, Jerusalem is the holiest city on earth for Jews, Christians and Muslims. Here are the great shrines: the Wailing Wall, the Temple of the Holy Sepulcher, Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa Mosque.

About the time of the city is not known. According to archaeologists, elevated Ophelia ("City of David"), protected on three sides by deep ravines, the first settlements date back to 3000 BC. e., that is more than 5,000 years ago. The earliest mention of the city represented in Egyptian inscriptions era Canaanite kingdoms (XX-XIX centuries. BC. E.). To this period belongs the biblical story of the king of Salem (probably Jerusalem) Malki-Tzedek. Since then, the history of the city has not been interrupted, although it was destroyed and rebuilt more than 80 times. Once, in ancient times, tried to conquer Jerusalem representatives of different tribes of Israel, but always defeated.

Finally subdue the city could only King David. Jerusalem became the capital of the united kingdom: he was not divided among the tribes and is ideally suited for this role. Shlomo (Solomon), the son of David, made the religious center of the city, built it in I. BC. e. temple for the Ark of the Covenant, which contained the scrolls with the divine commandments. The city settled priests (kogeny) and the Levites who served in the temple. When the kingdom broke up, Jerusalem for 500 years remained the capital of the Jews, but in 585 BC. e. it was destroyed by the troops of the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar, and the population became captives of the winners. However, the land on which stood the first temple, continued to be sacred to the Jews.

Later Jerusalem was rebuilt, the temple (in 515 BC. E.) And the walls. Up to 63 BC. e. the city was the capital of the Hasmonean kingdom, and then – a province of the Roman Empire. But after the Bar Kochba revolt in AD 70. e., as the Second Temple was destroyed. David ancient capital in ruins, where the Romans built the city Aelia Capitolina. Access to the Jews it was banned for many generations.
In 638 the city was captured Muslims have declared the Temple Mount sacred site of Islam, because, according to tradition, the Prophet Muhammad night ascension to heaven took place here.

By the beginning of XX century. ancient capital declined. December 11, 1917 entered the city, British troops, and Jerusalem became the residence of the British governor of Palestine. In 1923, the League of Nations confirmed the need to restore the Jewish national home here, which entailed the local council election, a system of administration, the beginning of the executive committee of the Jewish Agency and the Jewish National Fund.

All this time, did not stop clashes between Jews and Arabs. November 29, 1947 the UN adopted a resolution on the partition of Palestine into two states, and the preservation of international status of Jerusalem. War for the capital of David between Israelis and Jordanians began in 1948, after the British withdrawal. In 1949, the western part of the city was annexed by Israel, and the east, which included the Old Town – to Jordan. Proposal to transfer Jerusalem and its environs under international administration rejected the two warring parties. In June 1967, Israel annexed the territory east of the city, declaring it the capital of the state.

Jerusalem area – 110 square meters. km, its population is now more than 680 thousand people. Rich historical heritage of the capital did not infringed dynamic pace of modern life. Jerusalem is the epitome of contrast Old and New Towns, huge multicolored mosaic, composed of Jewish, Christian and Muslim holy sites. It is surrounded by a mighty wall, which was erected on this spot three times. One that we know the length of 4018 m and is resting on ancient foundations. It is the brainchild of the Ottoman period and was built in 1535-1537 gg., When the Turkish Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent. However, when it was designing serious mistake: two engineers supervised the construction is not included within the walls of the city of David. Sultan did not differ softness character behind a metal fence at the entrance 20'metrah Jaffa Gate, the two sarcophagi are not too attentive specialists … In the wall there are eight gates and 35 towers.

The most famous gates – Jaffa, which lead to the most respectable part of the Old and New Town.

In 1898, in connection with the construction of the monastery of Notre-Dame-de-France, in the wall