Saturday, November 10, 2012

Temple Mount Wooden Beams Update: Safe; Not Fully Secure

There's an update on the Temple Mount wooden beams (previous blogs here and here).

...none of the beams were burned, but they were all removed to a new location where they are now covered to protect them from the rain. This is something that the IAA and the Jordanian officials were demanding from the Waqf in recent years. We cannot verify that the beams are now in a shelter that will adequately protect them from humidity, but indeed they are in a much better location than before. 
Regarding the fire in the barrel, just modern refuse was being burned. Since 2004, a court ruling forbids removal of debris from the Temple Mount without proper archaeological supervision.

...Regarding the dating of the beams, it is most probable that they should be dated to the Byzantine period and not to the First Temple Period. In 1976 dozens of these wooden beams from the Temple Mount were studied and dated using Carbon 14 and Dendrochronological methods. The results showed that only two of them, which were not cedars, were from the First Temple Period, several others were from the Second Temple, Mamluk and Ottoman periods. The vast majority of them were cedars from the Byzantine period.

...The main problem regarding the beams is that, until recently, there was no awareness as to their importance, so consequently, many of them were sold to wood merchants and others were recycled on the Temple Mount in the past several years (We will post more details about this in the coming days).


1 comment:

Alan said...

I know that the Notzrim venerate the Original Cross, but it's not clear to me why a peice of wood that Shlomo the shiksa-collecter got from Hiram the Pagan, is Holy. Why NOT use it as 2x4 for construction today? Or are you the type that worships at the gravesites of Hasidic rebbes?