The Fall of Jerusalem:
The fall of Jerusalem had far reaching consequences for the Jews. Judaism has still not recovered from that trauma. But the Jews survived, while the Romans did everything they could to make sure that Jerusalem did not.
With Jerusalem desolate, the Romans moved in the Tenth Legion. Since there was no more military threat, the legion went into the business of brick making. The Roman brick-making kilns and workshops were discovered during the construction of Jerusalem’s International Convention Center (Binyanei Ha’uma).
You can get a unique sense of the layers of Jerusalem history here: international business conventions and music concerts take place at the very spot where legionnaires once toiled in Roman Jerusalem. You’ll find the kilns and remains of the workshops on the lower floor of Convention Center, where a section of the archaeological dig is preserved behind glass.
The Emperor Hadrian came here in 129 CE and decided to use the fall of Jerusalem as an opportunity to wipe it off the map entirely and rebuild it as a pagan Roman city. To erase any connection to the Jews, he built a pagan temple on the Temple Mount, renamed the entire country Palestine, and made it a capital offense to study, teach or practice Judaism.
He also erased all trace of Christian worship and built another pagan temple on Golgotha to prevent Christians gathering at the site of the crucifixion.
Map of Roman Jerusalem showing the two main north-south roads (the Cardo Maximus and Cardo Minimus), and the two main east-west roads.
A commercial thoroughfare – or Cardo – stretched from the Damascus gate to Mount Zion. It was over 900 meters long and 22.5 meters wide. The Cardo was rediscovered after the Six Day war in 1967.
Ironically, the Romans are long gone, and although the Cardo they built in Aelia Capitolina is one of the few cardos in the world still in use, it exists today as a flourishing commercial center in the Jewish city of Jerusalem.
Romans notwithstanding, the sack of Jerusalem was simply a short chapter in an ongoing story.
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