Archaeological find in Jerusalem’s City of David can reveal ancient secrets
The fortress was used to control the Temple mount. Mysterious 2,000-year-old fortification was built in Jerusalem during the reign of Antiochus IV.
The recent opening of the archaeological community of Israel in the City of David can answer one of the most enduring mysteries of archeology: the location of the citadel of the Greek Acre.
The exact location of the famous stronghold, built by Antiochus IV to manage and track everything that happens on the Temple mount, until now it was unknown because of the paucity of architectural remains, which can be traced back to the Greek presence in Jerusalem.
Over the last 100 years of archaeological research in Jerusalem, were put forward numerous theories of location of Acre, which, eventually, was captured by the Hasmoneans.
The book of Maccabees makes reference about the location of Acre: “And they built the city of David with a great and strong wall and strong towers, and made there a fortress for them: And they placed there a sinful nation, wicked men, and they became stronger in her.”
In addition, the historian Josephus wrote about an acre in “Jewish antiquities”.
“. And when he had overthrown the city walls,he built a citadel in the lower town, on the high place, whence one could see the temple; he fortified it with high walls and towers, and placed there a garrison of the Macedonians,” wrote Josephus.
On Tuesday morning at a press conference outside the walls of the Old city, where excavations have been ongoing for more than a decade, researchers said that they finally found proof of finding the citadel of Acre on the hill in the City of David.
Indeed, the excavations Director for the office of the Israeli antiquities Dr. Doron Ben-AMI, Yana Tchekhanovets and Salome Cohen, said that the opening gave them an unprecedented opportunity to reconstruct the location of the buildings, on the eve of the revolt of the Maccabees in the year 167 BC.
“New archaeological findings point to the creation of a well-fortified castle, which was built on a high rocky cliff overlooking the steep slopes of the city of David,” the archaeologists said in a joint statement.