A Tisha B'Av Special: Are These the Beams of the Temple? Is this the Gift from King Hiram of Sidon to King Solomon?
Posted: 16 Jul 2013 03:10 AM PDT
To commemorate Tisha B'Av today, the day Jews around the world mourn the destruction of the two Jewish Temples in Jerusalem, The Times of Israel republished an article Did Ancient Beams Discarded in the Old City Come from the First and Second Temples? by Matti Friedman.
Friedman reveals: "Under a tarp in one little-visited corner of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem lies a pile of rotting timber that would hardly catch a visitor’s eye." He reports that some of the beams date back 2,000 and even 3,000 years.
More beams are in storage in the Jewish community of Ofra and in the Rockefeller Museum in Jerusalem. Friedman suggests that they were removed during renovations on the Temple Mount after the 1927 earthquake destroyed parts of the al Aqsa Mosque.
We publish here, perhaps for the first time, 85-year-old pictures of the beams recently digitalized and posted online by the Israel Antiquities Authority.
Hamilton "photographed, sketched, excavated and analyzed" what he saw, according to Nadav Shragai, a scholar on Jerusalem sites, writing in Yisrael HaYom last year. But Hamilton promised the Islamic Authorities, the Waqf, that he would make "no mention of any findings that the Muslims would have found inconvenient" such as findings from the time of the Jewish Temples.
When the British left Palestine in 1948 the British Archeological Authority became the Israel Archeological Authority. The Rockefeller Museum and its archeological treasures came under Israeli control when the IDF reunited Jerusalem.
Could these pictures from the Israel Archeological Authority show the beams of the Jewish Temples?
Click on caption to view the original.