Conclusion of City of David Excavations

The Jerusalem Post carried an article yesterday on the conclusion of the excavations in the area of the Gihon Spring in the City of David. Ronny Reich of the University of Haifa and Eli Shukrun of the Antiquities Authority uncovered a huge Canaanite fortress built around this life-giving spring to protect it from invaders. This fortress was connected to the walled City of David by a strongly fortified passageway. Oriya Dasberg, the director of the development in the City of David, commented:

“The Spring Citadel was built in order to save and protect the water of the city from enemies coming to conquer it, as well as to protect the people going down to the spring to get water and bring it back up to the city.”

In a  video made by Eli Mandelbaum, Joe Uziel explains what was found. Initially, the excavators thought that these massive fortifications surrounded only the spring and the pool, as shown in a previous post. It is plausible that an area to the south was included in this fortified area, perhaps even larger than this reconstruction drawing suggests:

This drawing shows the City of David on the Eastern Hill of Jerusalem. The Kidron Valley is to the east (right in the drawing) and the Hinnom Valley to the west (left). The Central Valley (later called the Tyropoeon Valley) runs between the two. The Western Hill (left) remained unoccupied and unfortified till the time of Hezekiah. This drawing also shows a fortified area to the east of the City of David with a large tower.

Future excavations will hopefully cast further light on the eastern extent of the City of David.


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