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Hezekiah & the Siege of Jerusalem  

Scroll down the page for further information about each image. Click on each image to bring up a full sized picture (some of the images on this page are cropped). You can right click on each image and save using 'save background as'.
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Hezekiah's Broad Wall

 

Date: ca. 702 BC.

Place: Jerusalem, Israel.

 

When Hezekiah knew that Sennacherib's armies were going to turn on Jerusalem, he set about preparing the city to withstand a siege. One of the tasks he undertook was to repair and strengthen the city wall (2 Chronicles 32:5). The section of wall built by Hezekiah seen in this photo was excavated by Nahman Avigad in the 1970s. It measures just under 8m wide at the base and is estimated to have been 8m or more in height (see measuring stick in photo for estimated height).

 

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Hezekiah's Broad Wall

 

Date: ca. 702 BC.

Place: Jerusalem, Israel.

 

Another view of the broad wall looking in the other direction.

 

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Sennacherib's Prism

 

Date: 689 or 691 BC.

Place: Nineveh, Assyria

 

Photographed at the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA.

 

This Prism is one of three discovered so far that record the exploits of King Sennacherib during his reign (see also Taylor prism below). On one side of the prism it describes his attack against Jerusalem at the time of Hezekiah. Sennacherib boasts:

 

“As to Hezekiah, the Jew, he did not submit to my yoke. I laid siege to 46 of his strong cities, Walled forts and to countless small cities in their vicinity, and conquered them . . . [Hezekiah] I made a prisoner in Jerusalem, his royal residence, like a bird in a cage.”

 

However, he does not go on to record the plague sent by God which killed 185,000 of his troops and sent them scurrying back to Assyria.

 

 

Taylor Prism

 

Date: 689 or 691 BC.

Place: Nineveh, Assyria

 

Photographed at the British Museum, London, England. 

 

This is the second of three prisms discovered that record the exploits of King Sennacherib of Assyria. The third is found at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, which does not allow the taking of photos.

 

 

 

 

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Siloam Inscription - Hezekiah's Tunnel

 

Date: ca. 702 BC.

Place: Jerusalem, Israel.

 

Photographed at the Istanbul Archaeology Museum, Istanbul, Turkey.

 

One of the essential things needed during a siege was a good water supply. To accomplish this, Hezekiah's workmen created a tunnel that bought water from the Gihon spring, which was outside the city, and stored it in a newly built pool at Siloam (see 2 Kings 20:20). The tunnel was about half a kilometre long. It was such a great achievement that someone, possibly the engineer, left this inscription in the tunnel that reads:

 

... the breaking through. And this was the matter of the breaking through while yet ...

there were three cubits to ... the noise of one calling to the other, for there was a cleft (?) in the rock on the right ... And on the day of the breaking through the miners hewed, one to meet the other, pickaxe against pickaxe; and flowed the waters from the source to the pool over (a space of) one thousand and two hundred cubits.  And one hundred cubits was the height of the rock above the head of the miners.'