Truly amazing to see how the Roman Square from so long ago has been found. Carbon dating, the way we can date an artifact is fascinating. Finding artifacts and places like this help us see our stories come to life.
Photo: Kobi Alkotser
Editing: Yair Toledano Eitan Gross
The Roman Square was found by the gate of the Old City of Jerusalem, called Damascus Gate. The Square dates back to before the time of the destruction of the Second Temple. Which took place in 70CE. The gate of a city is a busy location, it is where people come and go. Which is why it is believed here there was a market place set up.
Damascus Gate has many names. In Hebrew, it is called Shaar Shechem, or Nablus Gate. It is called this because the road that leads from the gate heads in the direction of the Shechem, or Nablus. Continuing on from there it heads to Damascus in Syria.
Additionally, in Arabic, it is known as Bab Al Amud, the gate of the Pillar. The archaeologists digging not only found a Square but also a pillar, dating back to the time of the Romans. It was this pillar that marked the distance from Jerusalem to other cities in the region. In order for people to know how far they had traveled, or how far they had to go. Furthermore, the gate that we see today is fairly modern. It was built in 1537, by the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire.
Finally, this amazing piece of archaeology is just the beginning. There are many more artifacts waiting to be discovered. Also, this teaches us much history of how the Romans entered Jerusalem and took it under siege. Eventually, ending with the destruction of the Second Temple in 70CE.