Watch: Ancient Greek fortress solves mystery of Macabbean revolt
By Hezki Ezra
The discovery puts to rest one of the largest archaeological riddles concerning Jeruaslem – namely, the location of the Greek Seleucid imperial fortress that Antiochus Epiphanes (215-164 BCE) is known to have built to rule the city and oversee Jewish activities on the Temple Mount. The fortress was eventually destroyed by the Hasmonean Maccabees as they overthrew the Greek occupation.
Excavations at the Givati Parking Lot dig site, located in the City of David national park, have been ongoing for a decade. The Elad Foundationmanages the national park and funds the digs, which have revealed numerous finds that are on display to the public at the site.
But regarding the location of Antiochus’s fortress, which is mentioned in the Book of the Maccabees and the writings of Josephus, despite numerous proposals raised in the last 100 years of archaeological research it has remained elusive.
However, according to researchers, in recent months decisive evidencelocating the fortress has been found in the form of a section of ancient wall that is estimated to be the base of a tower four meters (13 feet) wide and 20 meters (65 feet) long, replete with a glacis artificial slope.
The glacis, built adjacent to the wall, is a defensive element made out of layers of dust, stone and pitch, and meant to keep away attackers. This slope reached as far as the Tyropoeon
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