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Journal of Biblical Literature. 


The Wall of Jerusalem according to the 
Book of Nehemiah. 



Director of the A merican School in Palestine, iqoi-iq02. 


ONE of the first questions to force itself upon the student of 
sacred history and topography on his arrival in Jerusalem is 
that concerning the limits of the ancient city and the identification 
of the gates and towers in its walls. The question has been discussed, 
with more or less insight and profit, incidentally by the commen- 
tators 2 and more independently by various travellers and explorers. 3 
Unfortunately the commentators have too often lacked the light they 
might have gotten from topographical researches, while the explorers, 
being unskilled in exegesis, have as often missed the meaning of 
their own discoveries. The result is a variety of irreconcilable opin- 
ions by which the unlearned are confused rather than instructed. 
The proper method is clearly one that combines a thorough study of 
the biblical source or sources of information with an impartial exami- 
nation of the ground under the guidance of the best archaeological 
authorities ; and this is the method by which it is proposed to deter- 

1 Works cited in the following pages are designated by initials. For the full 
titles see the bibliography at the end of the article. 

2 The most thorough modern discussion of the subject from the exegetical 
standpoint is found in Ryssel's edition of Bertheau's commentary on Nehemiah. 
See also Siegfried in the Handkommentar^ Bertholet in the Kurzer Hand-Com- 
tnentar, and Ryle in the Cambridge Bible. 

3 The most valuable sources of information with reference to the remains of the 
early defences of Jerusalem are the publications of the Palestine Exploration Fund 
and the Zeitschrift des deutschen Palaestina- Vereins, See also the articles on Jeru- 
salem in the Bible dictionaries. 



mine, if possible, the course of the wall built by Nehemiah and the 
location of the gates, towers, and other landmarks mentioned in the 
account of its construction. 

This account is contained in the Book of Nehemiah, a book which, 
as is universally conceded, like that of Ezra, originally formed a part 
of the same work with the Books of Chronicles. If, however, it is 
really thus related, there is reason for suspecting in advance of an 
examination that it, like the Books of Chronicles, is a composite 
production. This suspicion is confirmed by such an examination. 
It is easy to distinguish at least two sources, one supposedly Nehe- 
miah himself, and the other the editor or editors by whom his story 
was incorporated into the great whole of which it was intended to 
form a part. This being the case, the first thing to do is to separate, 
if possible, the governor's account from the additions it may have re- 
ceived, and make it the starting-point of the proposed investigation. 

The analysis of the book seems, at first sight, a simple matter, viz. 
a separation of the passages in which the first person is used from 
those in which the writer does not betray his relation to the events 
described. This, however, is not a reliable process, since, as can 
easily be seen, a writer, in describing events in which he participated, 
may sometimes keep himself in the background, while one who is 
enlarging upon the work of another may sometimes imitate the style 
of the original. Both of these possibilities must be kept in mind as 
the analysis proceeds. 

The book begins with an extract from Nehemiah's memoirs, the 
extent of which must be determined. The first chapter relates how 
Nehemiah, who was cup-bearer to the king of Persia, became 
acquainted with the condition of Judah and its remaining inhabit- 
ants, and what was the effect of the report on the subject brought 
him by his brother. In i 1 the date — "in the twentieth year" — 
was probably originally followed by the words of Artaxerxes the king, 
meaning Artaxerxes Longimanus (465-425 B.C.), as in 2 1 . 4 The 

4 This is the opinion of the great majority of the authorities on the history of 
the Hebrews. See, among the later, Stade (GVI. ii. 162 sqq.), Renan (HPI. iv. 
63 sqq.), Hunter (AE. i. 291 sqq.), Meyer (EJ. 89 sqq.), Kosters (WI. 118 sq.), 
Wellhausen (IJG. 126 sqq.), Cornill (HPI. 155 sqq.), Guthe (GVI. 253 sqq.), 
Piepenbring (//PI. 546 sqq.), van Hoonacker {RJ. 151 sq.), and Nikel (JV/G. 
186 sqq.). Marquart, on the other hand, holds that the king here meant is Arta- 
xerxes II., and cites 13 28 in support of his contention. This passage, however, 
can be rendered " Joiada, son of Eliashib the high priest," as well as " Joiada son 
of Eliashib, the high priest." See 2 Chr. 22 1 32 32 . The Chronicler, to judge 
from Neh. 3 1 , took it in the former sense. 


next two verses contain nothing inconsistent with the supposition that 
they were written by Nehemiah. Nor is there anything in the first 
half of v. 4 to arouse suspicion. The latter part, however, introduces 
a discrepancy ; for, while the grief of the writer is described as last- 
ing for " days," the prayer that follows is a supplication for the day 
on which he expected to approach his master with his request for a 
leave of absence. See v. 11 . Moreover, this prayer, which is clearly 
a literary production, though largely composed of Deuteronomic frag- 
ments, contains some expressions that sound more like the Chronicler 
than Nehemiah. See the word rendered " trespass " (v. 8 ), a favorite 
with this author, 5 and the one translated " confess " (v. 6 ), 6 which 
occurs twice (vs. 2sq ) in the prayer of the ninth chapter. Compare 
also the divine titles "Yahweh" (v. 5 ), "Lord" (v. 11 ), and "the God 
of heaven" (vs. 4s? ), with the "my God" and "our God" of the un- 
doubted passages. Finally, notice the expression " this man," which 
the favorite of the Persian king would hardly have employed, even in 
his private devotions, of so indulgent a master as Artaxerxes. The 
last clause of v. 11 may be retained, but it should be attached to the 
following chapter. 

The next section describes Nehemiah's interview with the king 
and the success of his application for permission to visit Judea and 
rebuild the city of his fathers. A few points deserve attention. It 
appears from 2 1 that the interview described occurred in Nisan, i.e. 
about four months after the return of Hanani. This is in harmony with 
i 4a ; also with what one would expect, since this is the season when 
the new governor would naturally start for Palestine for the purpose 
which he had in mind. In v. 4 the king asks a question. The state- 
ment, " Then I supplicated the God of heaven," which now separates 
this question from the answer to it, is certainly not in Nehemiah's 
simple and direct manner. In v. 8 for " the gates of the castle belong- 
ing to the house, and for the wall of the city," the Greek Version 
has only " the gates and for the wall of the city," and it is possible 
that the original reading was " the gates of the wall of the city." In 
v. 9 the order of the sentences seems to have been reversed. If the 
original arrangement be restored and the (now) second half correctly 
rendered " The king also sent," etc., the connection will be improved 
in both directions. 7 

5 maal, I Chr. 2 7 5 25 et passim. 6 hitwaddah. 

7 Torrey {EN. 36) refers vs. 7-9a to the Chronicler, citing in support of his opin- 
ion birdh, lekdrot, and the apparent connection between vs. 6 and 9b . The first 
of the words cited, however, if it be retained, should not be taken in the sense 


Nehemiah next (2 11 " 20 ) notices his arrival in Jerusalem, and de- 
scribes a secret examination of the walls which he made before call- 
ing the leaders of the Jews together and invoking their assistance in 
putting the city into a state of defence. This is one of the most 
important passages in the book. The topographical questions which 
it raises, however, will be discussed in another connection. For the 
present the object is to determine whether, as it now reads, it can 
have come from the hand of Nehemiah. There certainly is some- 
thing wrong with v. 16 . In the first place it repeats itself as well as 
v. 12 . The appearance of the priests in this connection, too, is suspi- 
cious. Finally the introduction of workers before the work has been 
begun suggests corruption in the text. Perhaps the original reading 
was, not "the rest that did the work," but, as in 4 8(14) and 13(19) , 
" the rest of the people." This would be an improvement, but the 
verse needs more thorough emendation. 8 The genuineness of v. 20 is 
even less defensible. In v. 19 Sanballat and others are represented as 
mocking the Jews and accusing them of planning a revolt against the 
great king. There is here, however, no hint of a desire on the part 
of the former to make common cause with the latter. But the an- 
swer returned by Nehemiah is, in effect, a rejection of such a pro- 
posal. See also the expressions, " the God of Heaven," and " his 
servants," and, on the latter, i 6 10 - u and 9 10 . It seems best, therefore, 
to regard this verse as an interpolation suggested by Ezr. 4 3 . Per- 
haps, since v. 19fe anticipates 6 6 , where the charge here made is per- 
fectly in place, this whole verse should go with v. 20 . The case against 
both of them will become still stronger, if it can be shown that 
vs. 1 " 32 of the next chapter 9 are not from the hand of Nehemiah. 

The whole section 3 1 " 32 is usually referred to the same source as 
the first two chapters, but there are several reasons for believing that 
it did not form a part of Nehemiah's story. First, elsewhere Nehe- 
miah represents himself as directly superintending the work on the 
wall, and his servants as actively employed in its reconstruction. 
See 4 7(i3)*., Hew)*. 6 1 - 3 7 1 , also £*w.\iw m Here the governor is 

{temple) in which it is employed by the Chronicler 1 Chr. 2o> 19 , and the second, 
being used but once in the Books of Chronicles, can hardly be considered a favor- 
ite with their author. If Mlah in v. 6 is rendered " grant leave " and the two clauses 
of v. 9 are transposed, there will be no need of supposing the Chronicler to have 
had a hand in the passage. He may, however, have added v. 10 . See vs. 19 8 s- 

8 The omission of the latter half of the verse may be the solution of the diffi- 

9 In the English Version they constitute the whole chapter. 


entirely ignored, the credit for the work being given to persons 
named, who appear to have undertaken on their own account to 
rebuild certain sections of the fortifications. Second, in 6 1 — see 
also 7 1 — it is distinctly stated that the gates were not put into place 
until after the entire wall had been completed ; but from the passage 
now under consideration one would get the impression that work on 
both began and ended at the same time. See vs. 3 - 6 - 13 - 15 . Third, 
in the parts of the book that may most confidently be referred to 
Nehemiah the priests and the Levites play a modest, sometimes 
unworthy role ; in this connection they enjoy a most flattering promi- 
nence. Thus, Eliashib, the high priest, who in 13 4 and 28 is represented 
as intimately allied with the enemies of Nehemiah, here heads the 
list of builders. 10 The priests are introduced as a class in vs. 17, ^ 28 . 
Of the other individuals mentioned as leaders Meremoth (v. 4 ) was 
certainly a priest, and Binnui (vs. 18 24 ) a Levite ; and probably 
Sadok (v. 4 ), Hashabiah (v. 17 ), Ezer (v. 19 ), Azariah (v. 24 ), Sadok (v. 29 ), 
and Shemaiah (v. 29 ) belonged to one or the other of these orders. 
Fourth, in 6 18 Nehemiah says that Meshullam ben Berekiah was a 
confederate of Tobiah, to whose son he had given his daughter in 
marriage ; here (3 4 - 30 ) he is credited with being one of the governor's 
most zealous and active assistants. Fifth, the subject did not permit 
a great variety of peculiar expressions, yet, in reading the passage, 
especially in the original, one becomes aware of certain differences 
between its style and that of the preceding and following context. 
In the first place, the structure of the sentences is noticeably dis- 
jointed. See the omission of the proper particles in vs. 1 7 8 17, 18 ; and 
of the verbs in v. 25 . This is like the Chronicler ; and so is the use 
of "at the hand of" in the sense of "next to," 11 to which — and 
the same is true of the preposition "after" 12 in the same sense — 
the writer attaches singular suffixes, when the antecedent is plural, 
and vice versa. See vs. 16 *' 4M * 5 - 8M '' 9 - 10 - 12 17 - 19 - * **.»■» Finally, 
if this whole passage, and the last two verses of the preceding 
chapter be omitted, the following verses, 3 33 " 38 (4 1 " 6 ), furnish the 
logical and natural continuation of the thought of the preceding con- 
text. These considerations seem sufficient to warrant the opinion 
that this detailed account of the way in which the wall was rebuilt is 
not from the pen of Nehemiah, but is an attempt of the Chronicler 

10 It is taken for granted that the same person is meant in both passages; but 
the argument would not be invalidated by the admission that there were two 
priests of this name. 

11 'alyad: 2 Chr. I7 15 - 16 18 31 15 . 12 'ahare. 


to improve on the governor's simple and trustworthy narrative. 13 The 
effect of this conclusion on the value of the passage in question will 
appear at a later stage of the discussion. 

The first stage in the accomplishment of Nehemiah's undertaking 
was reached when he had succeeded in moving his countrymen to 
resolve to rebuild the wall, and had actually begun operations, as 
related in 2 18 . The next was marked by the completion of the wall 
to one-half the required height, as described in 3 s8 (4 6 ), in spite of 
the jibes of his enemies. 14 These jibes, be it observed, were uttered 
at Samaria, although, of course, they were promptly repeated at 
Jerusalem ; cf. 2 20 . 15 

When the scoffers found that the wall was well under way, they 
undertook by force to prevent the completion of it. Chapter 4 
(EV. 4 7 * w -) describes the difficulties under which Nehemiah labored 
owing to the combined hostility of his neighbors and the timidity or 
disloyalty of some of his own countrymen. 16 While the danger was 
greatest his whole force was under arms. Afterward half of his men 
stood guard while the rest of them worked. Finally, however, by un- 
remitting toil and vigilance he accomplished his purpose so far as 
the wall was concerned. 

At first sight it looks as if chapter 5 had been misplaced, since it 

13 So Torrey. Guthe (SBOT.), on the other hand, attributes the whole chap- 
ter to Nehemiah, and none of the authorities heretofore cited seems to have 
questioned its genuineness. 

14 The text of v. 34 is undoubtedly corrupt. Various emendations have been 
suggested. See Guthe, SBOT. in loco ; Stade, GVI.ii. 168 ; van Hoonacker, RJ. 
175. The construction with lahem seems to indicate that the preceding verb 
should be read ye* dzebii, and the whole rendered, " If they be left to themselves." 
The second verb, also, is unintelligible in the connection. Perhaps, instead of 
IPQr " will they sacrifice," the original had lror " will they build high." See 
2 Chr. 33 14 . 

15 The object generally supplied after the verb "provoke" in v. 37 (EV. 4 5 ) is 
"thee," referring to the Deity. Since, however, Sanballat is represented as 
addressing his friends and neighbors, it is reasonable to suppose that it was they, 
and not God, whom he intended to incite against the Jewish builders. On the 
verb see Ezek. 32°, and on leneged, Jos. 5 13 . 

16 In v. l W the words " and the Arabians — Ashdodites " are an evident inter- 
polation. See Guthe, SBOT. The latter half of v. 6 < 12 > has given the exegetes 
trouble. See the commentaries. It can be brought into harmony with the con- 
text by simply changing 'Qlttffl to ^ttfF). The clause will then read, "they 
said, Ten times more than all the places ye repeople are against us " — a very 
natural report to be brought to the governor by the Jews living outside the city. 
On the meaning of the verb, see Ezek. 36 s3 . 


interrupts the story of the restoration of the wall, which is finished 
in chapter 6. Moreover, v. 8 might be interpreted as implying that 
a considerable time had elapsed since Nehemiah came to Jerusalem. 
On the other hand, however, v. 10 , in which he tells about lending to 
his brethren, certainly refers to a practice then followed, and in v. 16 
the expression "this wall" indicates that, although the chapter was 
written after its author ceased to be governor, when written it was 
intended for its present setting. 17 

Sanballat and his confederates, having failed to surprise Nehemiah, 
next undertook to frighten him by misrepresenting his motives. In 
this attempt they were aided by Shemaiah and others, who pretended 
to be anxious for the governor's safety. He refused to be disturbed 
in his great work, but, at the risk of being accused of disloyalty to 
the king, redoubled his efforts and, finally, at the end of only fifty-two 
days, had the satisfaction of seeing the gates hung and the defences 
of the city completed. 

In the first verses of chapter 7 the use of the first person is con- 
tinued. This would indicate that the writer is still Nehemiah. The 
general content, too, harmonizes with such an opinion ; for nothing 
could be more natural than that, after finishing the wall, the governor 
should man his defences and proceed to provide for the future secu- 
rity of the city. The passage has, however, been freely interpolated. 
In the first place " the singers and the Levites " of v. 1 are clearly 
superfluous ; indeed, the last half of the verse might be omitted with- 
out injury to the connection. In v. 2 there can originally have been 
but one name. Omit "and Hananiah the captain of the castle," 
and the descriptive clause that follows becomes intelligible. 18 At the 
same time it becomes clear why the verb rendered " appoint " in the 
next verse is singular. Here, as frequently, the compiler has made 
an addition without carefully revising the context. 

The structure of v. 4 permits, if it does not require, one to connect 
it with what follows; cf. RV. (Amer.). Hence, when, in v. 5 , Nehe- 
miah tells about being moved to call a popular meeting, one 
expects him to add that the object of the meeting was to devise a 
plan for increasing the population of the city. The text says that it 

17 In v. 13 the words " And all the congregation said, Amen, and praised Yah- 
weh" are without doubt an interpolation. Nehemiah does not use the word ren- 
dered " congregation." See I 5 . 

18 Wellhausen, also (IJG. 131), suspects the genuineness of these words on 
account of the likeness of the name Hananiah to that of Nehemiah's brother, as 
well as the mention of the birah. 


was to make a genealogical enrolment. As a matter of fact, he 
reports the discovery of a list previously made and, in reproducing 
it, entirely forgets the waiting assembly. 

The connection at this point is evidently defective, but it is diffi- 
cult to discover who is responsible for the discrepancies. Torrey 
{EN. 38 sqq.) pronounces the list and, in fact, the whole chapter, the 
work of the Chronicler, one of the characteristics of whose style is 
precisely such disjointedness. This view, however, has serious diffi- 
culties. The list occurs also in Ezr. 2. Now, while it is easy to 
understand why the Chronicler, if he found it in Neh. 7, should 
wish to introduce it in the other connection, there seems to be 
no reason why, if he himself was the author of it, he should repeat 
it. Moreover, if he had composed it, he would hardly have given 
the laity the prominence they here enjoy. Cf. Ezr. 8 and 10 and 
Neh. 10. 

On the other hand, there is ground for doubting whether this list 
is really, as represented, a record of the number and lineage of a 
multitude who returned from captivity soon after the overthrow of 
the Babylonian empire by Cyrus. In v. 5 the words " those that came 
up at the first," which cannot, as the English version would lead one 
to suppose, be construed with the preceding phrase, are evidently an 
interpolation. If, however, the text of this verse was changed to sug- 
gest an earlier date for the document discovered, it seems more than 
probable that the more explicit statement in v. 7 , if not v. 6 , was inserted 
into the document by the same hand and for the same purpose. 
Perhaps, as Marquart (FIJG. 35 sq.) suggests, the title originally con- 
tained only the words, " These are the sons of the province." See 
1 1 3 . In any case, the document in its original form seems to have 
been a census of the Jewish community — whether before or after 
the time of Nehemiah does not appear — which was first inserted 
into the memoirs, and finally, with parts of these memoirs, incorpo- 
rated into the larger work of the Chronicler. 

It has suffered more or less in these processes. Some of the items 
have been lost or some of the numbers changed, as is evident from 
the fact that the total given in v. 66 does not agree with the sum of the 
figures representing the families, or other associations, previously men- 
tioned. It has also, apparently, received additions. One of these is 
v. 34 , and another, according to Guthe {SBOT.) 9 vs. msq ; but the most 
important is vs. 70 " 72 , which may be explained as an adaptation by the 
editor, who transferred chapters 8-10 to their present position, of 
Ezr. 2 m * q - to the date of Nehemiah. The Chronicler, if it was he 


who revised the title, would naturally have simply repeated this 
passage. 19 

Chapter 8 describes a great gathering at Jerusalem. It is not, 
however, the one called by the governor, but a purely religious 
convocation, with Ezra the scribe for its moving spirit. There is, 
therefore, as little reason for considering this chapter the proper con- 
tinuation of Nehemiah's memoirs as for supposing it to have been 
written by the author of the list that now precedes it. The fact that 
here Ezra, and not Nehemiah, 20 is the principal figure, suggests the 
query whether the passage does not belong to the book that bears 
the former's name. There are other reasons for this view. The 
language here used also reminds one of Ezr. 7-10. See especially 
the terms " assembly " (8 2 - 17 ) for the Jews and " heads of the fathers " 
(v. 13 ) for their leaders; also the number instead of the name (f 3 8 2 ) 
to designate the month. 21 Finally in 1 Esdras (g 37sqq ) Neh. f 3 and 
the first twelve verses of chapter 8 immediately follow the account 
of the dissolution of the mixed marriages found in the last (tenth) 
chapter of the canonical Ezra. 22 

Torrey, also, refers this chapter to the same author as Ezr. 7-10. 
He, however, inserts it with 7 70-73 , between chapters 8 and 9 of that 
book {EN. 2<)sqq.). Now, it is true that, if 7 70 " 73 immediately fol- 
lowed Ezr. 8 36 , the connection would not seem unnatural ; but this 
fact is more than counterbalanced by other considerations. In the 
first place, the relation between vs. 7072 and Ezr. 2 m sq - shows that 
the former passage, like the latter, was written for the list that pre- 
cedes it. Secondly, the impression one gets from the first verses of 
Ezr. 9, is that the statement with reference to the mixed marriages 
was not in the nature of a confession produced by the reading of the 
law, but of a report on existing conditions soon after the arrival of 
Ezra, and that, therefore, this chapter should immediately follow the 
eighth, as in the present arrangement. Thirdly, the fact that the 
reading of the law was suggested, not by the scribe, as if he had no 

19 The fact that, as will presently be shown, chapters 8-10 were written by the 
Chronicler for another connection is in itself proof that the passage in question 
is from a different author. 

20 In fact, Nehemiah appears but once (v. 9 ) in the chapter, and there, as 
appears from 1 Esd. 9 49 , the name is an interpolation. See Meyer, EJ. 200; 
cf. Nikel, WJG. 200. 

21 See Ezr. f - 9 io 9 - 16 - 1 ?; cf. Neh. I 1 2 1 6 15 . 

22 In the received text the account seems incomplete ; but the substitution for 
the latter half of v. 44 of the reading of 1 Esd. 9 s6 , " and they put them away with 
their children," remedies the difficulty. 


other mission than to secure recognition for it as soon as possible, 
but by the people in a gathering summoned for another purpose, 
furnishes a reason for assigning Neh. 8 to a later place in the narra- 
tive. Finally, if, as can be shown, Neh. 9 sq., which Torrey himself 
places at the end of the Book of Ezra, are the sequel to 8, this con- 
stitutes an additional reason for concluding that all three chapters 
belong there. On the last point the following indications seem con- 
clusive. In the first place, the date at the beginning of 9 connects 
it with the preceding chapter. The feast of tabernacles began on 
the fifteenth of the month and lasted eight days (Lev. 23 s4 *"•). If, 
therefore, as Nowack {HA. 2 173 ) concludes, the days were reckoned 
from morning to morning, the last would end on the morning of the 
twenty-third. In any case, when in 9 1 the author says that the people 
assembled on the twenty-fourth, he evidently means that there was 
only the necessary interval of a day between the sabbath with which 
the feast closed and the gathering next to be described. 23 Secondly, 
the fact that the people came to this meeting in mourning, so far 
from militating against the view here maintained, supports it. The 
proper expression of the penitence produced by the law had been 
interrupted by the reminder that the feast of tabernacles was a season 
of rejoicing (8 9s<? ). It was, therefore, perfectly natural that, when 
the feast was past and there was time for serious thought, a renewed 
sense of unworthiness should take possession of the community, and 
the people should appear " in sackcloth and with earth on them." 
The resumption of the reading of the law points in the same direc- 
tion. Thirdly, the statement in g 2 with reference to separation from 
foreigners, too, which Torrey quotes as decisively favorable to his 
position, really has the contrary significance. The author is not here 

23 It is taken for granted that the feast was celebrated at the time prescribed 
by the law. This being the case, the people would seem to have assembled on 
the first of the month and, after observing the feast of trumpets, spent the inter- 
nal between the second and the fifteenth in building their booths and making 
other preparations for the feast of tabernacles. It is possible, however, that the 
text should be emended. In 7 73 , as in Ezr. 3 1 , the month is given, but not the 
day of the month. The exact date must in each case be learned from a later 
statement (Ezr. 3 6 , Neh. 8 2 ) which looks like an afterthought. Perhaps, there- 
fore, the phrase " the seventh month " should be changed to " the feast of the 
seventh month," or interpreted in this sense. This would harmonize with v. 18 ; 
also with Deut. 3i 10s ^-, according to which the feast of tabernacles was the 
proper time for publicly reading the law. The " second day " of v. 13 would thus 
be the second, not of the month, but of the feast ; so that the booths must have 
been built after the feast began. 


thinking especially of the mixed marriages, but of the intermixture 
of persons, male as well as female, of alien origin in the community 
as hitherto constituted. His idea, more fully expressed in i3 ls ^- is 
that at this time " the seed of Israel," i.e. the genuine Jews, entered 
into a new organization from which they excluded " the mixed multi- 
tude." 24 This complete separation, being made in obedience to the 
requirements of the law, is described in io 29(28) as a separation " unto 
the law of God." The last passage, and not g 2 , is the key to the 
problem, and it directly connects 10 with both of the preceding 
chapters. 25 

Thus far there has been no indication that the promise of 7* sq - was 
to be fulfilled, but at the beginning of chapter 1 1 we suddenly come 
upon a brief passage (vs. ls? ) which, at first sight, seems to give the 
desired information concerning the outcome of Nehemiah's evident 
purpose to increase the population of his capital. It may correctly 
describe the means he employed and the result attained, but it can 
hardly be his account of the matter. Perhaps, as has been suggested 
(Ryle), it is an abstract of the original from the hand of the author 
who inserted into the memoirs not only the list in chapter 7, but 
vs. 3 " 24 of this chapter. 

Among the reasons for disposing of vs. 3 " 24 as just suggested are 
the following : First, the order in which the various classes of the 
population are mentioned is the same here as in the list of chapter 
7 ; and, second, an account of the distribution of the inhabitants in 
the province is a natural sequel to the census previously given. This 
does not mean that the compiler was the author of these verses, or 
that they were originally written by any one else for the connection 
in which the Chronicler found them. Both of these alternatives 

24 According to Kosters ( WI. 93^.), 13 1 " 3 belongs near the beginning of 
chapter 9. 

25 It will doubtless be objected to the above conclusion, by those who refuse, 
as most do, to follow Kosters in placing Nehemiah before Ezra, that it is forbid- 
den by the fact that the governor heads the list of those who signed the covenant. 
See io 2 . This, however, is not a serious obstacle. In the first place, the fact 
that in 8 9 , as has been shown, his name is an accretion, casts suspicion upon its 
genuineness in this passage. Secondly, the structure of the verse betrays the 
hand of a reviser. Thirdly, if Nehemiah be omitted, the first list (vs. 2-8 ) will 
consist, as it should, entirely of priests, and the same number of them (twenty- 
two) as that in 12 1 - 7 . See Marquart, FIJG. 34; cf. Meyer, EJ. 200. For 
a statement and discussion of the various views according to which Ezra and 
his company reached Jerusalem after Nehemiah's arrival, see Nikel, WJG. 
146 sqq. 


must be rejected. If the same person had written both passages 
he would doubtless have used the same terms throughout to desig- 
nate the families mentioned. The second passage has a parallel, 
but not a very close one, in 1 Chr. 9 1 " 34 . The list therein contained, 
however, although it purports to give the first inhabitants (v. 2 ) of 
Jerusalem, is probably later than the one here preserved, which 
seems to be pre-exilic. See 1 Chr. 9 18 , Neh. n 23 *'-. In v. 20 of this 
chapter one reads that " the rest of Israel, the priests, and the 
Levites, were in all the cities of Judah, every one in his inheritance." 
This statement disposes of the inhabitants of the province who did 
not live at Jerusalem. It is, therefore, probable that vs. 25 " 36 , where 
the distribution of the rural population between Beersheba and 
Bethel is described, was added to the original list by the Chroni- 
cler. The significance of the fact that most of the names of the 
places occupied by Benjamin are found in 7 s7 " 37 it is not necessary 
to discuss in this connection. 

In chapter 12 the first twenty-six verses are devoted to a genealogy 
of the priests and the Levites. It begins with a list, entirely different 
from that of 7 s9 sqq ■, of the priests " that went up with Zerubabel," the 
names, except the last six, being those of io 2(1)s<? *\ Then follow 
(v. 8 sq ) the names of eight Levites, four of whom signed the cove- 
nant (io 10(9)s< ™-), two others being mentioned in n 17 . In vs. 12 " 21 is 
next given a list of the representatives of the priestly classes, except 
Hattush, in the second generation, and in vs. 22 " 26 a corresponding, but 
more general, statement with reference to the Levites of " the days 
of Joiakim " and " the days of Nehemiah." See v. 26 . If these were 
the only chronological indications, the entire section might be re- 
ferred to the time of Nehemiah. This, however, is not the case. 
In vs. lland22 the line of high priests is brought down to Jaddua, who, 
according to Josephus (Antt. xi. 8, 4), was a contemporary of Alex- 
ander the Great. Hence, it is necessary to conclude that this 
part of the chapter, if not entirely the work of the Chronicler, in 
its present form is as late as the date at which he is supposed to 
have written. 

Next comes the account of the dedication of the wall (vs. 27 **)- 
It begins with a description of the preparations made among the 
priests and the Levites, which is so clearly after the manner of 
the Chronicler that there is no need of analyzing it. Then (v. 31 ) 
the style and content suddenly change. The first person reappears 
an d — what is more significant — Nehemiah resumes the place that 
he occupies in the first chapters (except 3) of the book. See also 


" the rulers," 26 v. 40 . The rest of the story, however, is not all by the 
governor. To get an idea of the ceremony as he described it one 
must begin with v. 31 , omit vs. 33 " 36 , and stop with v. 40 , making certain 
corrections in the remainder of the text. 27 The original account, so 
far as it has been preserved, ends with the last mentioned verse, the 
next three being an addition by the same hand as those already 

The last four verses of the chapter, also, are from the Chronicler, 
but they do not belong in their present connection. The most suit- 
able place for them is at the end of the tenth chapter, since one 
would expect the appointment of the officials here mentioned to 
follow the adoption of the regulations which these officials were to 

The first three verses of chapter 13 are another fragment from the 
pen of the Chronicler. A favorite opinion is that they probably 
belong between Ezr. io 9 and 10 . See W. R. Smith, OTJC? 427. 
This suggestion, however, ignores the fact, already noted, that while 
Ezr. 10 has to do with the subject of the mixed marriages, this 
passage refers to the complete purgation of the Jewish community of 
all alien elements. It should doubtless come later, perhaps between 
vs. 1 and 2 of Neh. 9, in the story of the Restoration. Cf. Torrey, 
EN. 44 sqq. 

The reappearance of the first person in v. 6 points to Nehemiah as 
the author of the rest of the chapter, and this indication is generally 
accepted as trustworthy. See Siegfried, Bertholet, aL Torrey, how- 
ever, attributes the whole to the Chronicler, basing his contention 
largely on its vocabulary, and citing an array of expressions which, 
at first sight, seems invincible. Still there is something to be said for 
the contrary opinion. 

In the first place there is room for doubt whether in all cases the 
words and phrases cited may properly be counted in favor of the 
view based on them. The following are some of the points on which 
Torrey's conclusion seems open to objection : 

Chapter 13 4 : There is a great difference between the mention of a 
priest who had offended against order and discipline and the intro- 
duction of the priests as functionaries on all public occasions. It is 
the latter for which the Chronicler is noted. For other individuals 

26 Segdnlm, also 2 16 48 (") 57. 17 f. 

27 In v. 81 ,for fOTfirfl, rendered "and went in procession," read rO^fi nHNIT, 
and the one went, and in v. 38 for bWfob, rendered " to meet them," blK&ttfb, 
to the left. 


mentioned by Nehemiah just as he here mentions Eliashib, 28 see 

£10. 18 29 

Verse 5 : Here, indeed, the Levites owe their appearance in the 
narrative to the Chronicler, but this admission does not require us 
to attribute vs. 4 " 9 entire to him, since it is pretty clear from v. 9 
that the features of this verse which recall the Chronicler are an 
accretion. A similar explanation is applicable in vs. 10 ' 13 22 . 

Verse H : The ejaculatory prayers by which the passage is punctu- 
ated are so like Nehemiah (5 19 , 6 914 ) that it seems unfair to suspect 
their genuineness until the authorship of the Chronicler has otherwise 
been satisfactorily established. 

Verse 15 : The correspondence between chapter 13 and io 30-4 ^ 29-393 , 
to which Torrey here calls attention, is more satisfactorily explained, 
in view of the variations in style and content, by supposing the 
latter to be an imitation of the former by the Chronicler than that he 
was the author of both of them. 

Verse 16 : The combination " Judah and Jerusalem " is, indeed, a 
favorite with the Chronicler, but he always puts both words, or the 
phrases in which they occur, into the same construction. Here the 
expression is " to the sons of Judah and (or even) in Jerusalem," 
something very different. Cf. Ezr. 4 6 . 

Verse 17 : The expression "contend," found also in vs. 11 and 17 , so 
far from pointing to the Chronicler, betrays the hand of Nehemiah. 
See 5 7 . 

Verse 19 : The significance of the appearance of the servants in this 
verse is not neutralized by the introduction of the Levites in v. 22a , the 
genuineness of which, moreover, is not beyond question. 

Verse 23 : If the Chronicler had written this, he would have ex- 
pressed a "direct contrast" by the use, not of "Jews," but, as in 
9 2 and 13 2 , of " Israel." ^ 

Verse 28 : It is by no means certain that Josephus in Antt. xi. 8, 2, 
refers to the event here narrated. Steuernagel (DJ. 276) and others 
think that the Jewish historian has confused similar events of different 

The foregoing criticism seems to have shown that some of the 

28 Torrey cites all the passages in Ezra and Nehemiah in which the name Eli- 
ashib occurs, as if it always designated the same person. As a matter of fact, in 
Ezr. 10 it is given to no fewer than four distinct individuals. See vs. 6 24 - 27 - 36 . 

29 Shemaiah, also, may have been a priest. See the Bible dictionaries. 

30 The words "of Ammon, of Moab " of this verse, as appears from the next, 
have been interpolated. 


expressions cited really favor the view that Nehemiah was the author 
of more or less of the passage under consideration. To these should 
be added at least two others, the " rulers " of v. 11 and the " nobles " 
of v. 17 , generally found together, neither of which is used in a passage 
clearly attributable to the Chronicler. 

These are some of the more external marks betraying a hand not the 
Chronicler's. There are two or three other considerations that ought 
to be noticed. Reference has already been made to the Chronicler's 
partiality for priests and Levites. There are doubtless traces of it in 
touches added to this passage, but the story as a whole leaves an 
impression concerning the attitude of the writer toward these classes 
so different from that produced by chapter 3 1 " 32 that it seems impos- 
sible to believe both to have been composed by the same person. 
Is it probable, for instance, that the Chronicler, after placing Eliashib 
at the head of the repairers of the wall, would represent him as an 
ally of Nehemiah's enemies? The Chronicler is also very careful in 
his regard for the honor of David and most of his successors, omitting 
everything conflicting with the idea that they were loyal and consist- 
ent servants of Yahweh. In his account of the reign of Solomon, 
therefore, he makes no allusion to this king's weakness for foreign 
women. Is it probable, then, that he wrote v. 26 of this last chapter? 
Finally, compare the strenuous measures described in Neh. 13 with 
the way in which the Chronicler represents similar results as obtained. 


The outcome of the preceding analysis, so far as it bears on 
the subject next to be discussed, is to the effect that there are in 
the book of Nehemiah three passages (2 13 " 15 3 1 " 32 12 31 " 41 ) in which the 
course of the wall of Jerusalem after the Restoration is more or less 
fully indicated, and that the first and the last (in its original reading) 
of these passages were written by the governor, while the second was 
inserted by a later writer, probably the Chronicler. The precise bear- 
ing of this result should not be misunderstood. The interpolated 
passage may not be disregarded ; for, while it is not genuine, in the 
sense of being from the hand of Nehemiah, and, so far as its state- 
ments with reference to the men and method employed in rebuilding 
the wall are concerned, may be entirely fictitious, yet it doubtless cor- 
rectly describes this wall in terms current about a hundred and fifty 

* See the plan at the end of this article. 


years after it was restored. 1 It may, therefore, be treated as a trust- 
worthy source, care being taken not to forget that, although the course 
of the wall was the same when it was written as in the time of Nehe- 
miah, there may have been changes in the names of its various gates, 
towers, etc. 

The object being to trace the course of the wall rebuilt by Nehe- 
miah, it is fitting that the starting-point for the proposed study should 
be the same as that of the governor on his reconnaissance, viz. the 
Ravine Gate. See 2 13 . The name here used was clearly intended 
to indicate the position of the gate in question, and it doubtless 
served this purpose among the Jews of the period to which the books 
in which it is found belong. Now, however, it has ceased to be 
so readily intelligible ; hence the divergent views among modern 
authorities with reference to its meaning. Most identify the ravine 
from which the gate received its name with the so-called " ravine of 
Hinnom" (Jos. 15 8 Neh. n 30 ), or "ravine of the children of Hin- 
nom" (Jos. 15 8 18 16 etc.), and this with Wady er-Rababi, the valley 
that bounds the city on the west and the south. Sir Charles War- 
ren, however, dissents from this view ; for, although he locates the 
gate on the west side of the city, he identifies the ravine from which 
it is generally supposed to have taken its name with Wady el-J6z 
and its continuation in Wady Sitti Maryam, the ancient Kidron. 

When he first adopted this opinion (RJ. 290) he seems to have 
based it largely upon Jer. 19 2 (not n ), where the Authorized Version 
has " go forth unto the valley of the son of Hinnom, which is by the 
entry of the east gate," and Stanley (RJ. xiv.), who should have 
known that the rendering " east gate " was mistaken, blindly followed 
him. See the Revised Version. In his article on the subject in 
Hastings' Bible Dictionary, Warren is equally unfortunate, the proof 
in support of his contention being drawn from an erroneous trans- 
lation and interpretation of Jos. 15 8 and 18 16 , the use of which was 
suggested by a mistaken identification of En-rogel with the Vir- 
gin's Spring ('Ain Sitti Maryam). 2 Here, as in the former instance, 
he appears to have erred through too great reliance on the English, 

1 Driver {LOT. 519) thinks that "the language" of the book of Chronicles, 
" not less than the general style and tone, favours a date subsequent to 300 B.C. 
rather than one prior to it." Cornill {EAT. 121) assigns it to "the first half of 
the third century." 

2 Another name for it is ' Ain % umm ed-derej, the Spring of Many Steps. It is 
so called on account of the number of steps (thirty) by which one must descend 
to the water. 


but this time the Revised Version. In the former of the passages 
cited the reading is, " the border went up by the valley of the son of 
Hinnom unto the side of the Jebusite southward (the same is Jeru- 
salem) : and the border went up to the top of the mountain that 
lieth before the valley of Hinnom westward, which is at the utter- 
most part of the vale of Rephaim northward." Warren interprets 
this as meaning that the boundary between Judah and Benjamin, 
on reaching the Virgin's Spring, ran "up the valley of Kidron to 
a point opposite to the southern side of the temple, thence across the 
temple courts south of the temple, and up the valley on the south 
side of Akra to the Jaffa gate, and thence north by the Russian 
hospice to Lifta." 

The first objection to this interpretation that suggests itself is that 
a point on the Kidron " opposite to the southern side of the temple," 
or, rather, the site on which it afterward stood, could hardly be 
called " the side of the Jebusite southward," since the ancient city 
lay to the south of it. 3 There is a more serious one that is not so 
apparent. The text says that the line first " went up by," in the 
sense of through? the valley of Hinnom, and then again " went up 
to" the top of a certain rise of ground whose location is described. 
The phraseology used seems to permit one to suppose, as Warren 
does, that the line, after reaching " the side of the Jebusite," left the 
valley and took a different direction. This, however, is not the 
meaning of the author, as is evident from 18 16 , where he traces 
the same line from west to east, i.e. in the opposite direction. The 
sense in this latter verse is somewhat obscured by the inconsistency 
of the translators, who make the author say that the border, after 
descending the hill, went down "to," instead of "by," "the valley 
of Hinnom to the side of the Jebusite southward." 5 When this cor- 
rection is made it becomes perfectly clear that according to 15 8 the 
line ran from En-rogel, wherever that may have been, all the way 
up the valley of Hinnom (past "the side of the Jebusite") to the 

3 It is now the opinion of a majority of the authorities on the subject that 
ancient Jerusalem lay on the ridge often identified with Ophel, south of the site 
of the temple. See G. A. Smith, Enc. Bib., art. 'Jerusalem'; cf. Conder, Die. 

4 It would be still more exact to say simply that the line " went up the valley," 
since in the original the noun "valley " is the direct object of the preceding verb. 
On the use of verbs of motion in this way, see Gen. 44* Num. 13 17 Deut. 2 7 etc. 

5 The construction is precisely the same as in 15 8 . Hence here also it would 
be as well, or better, to omit the preposition and say that the line " went down 
the valley." 


. mm 


A Wli-j 

El H* * 




hill at the head of it, so that the identification of this valley with the 
Kidron, so far from allowing "the partition of Jerusalem between Judah 
and Benjamin," as Warren asserts, makes it impossible. Nor is this 
all. It can now be shown conclusively that the author of these two 
passages (P), when he wrote " the valley of Hinnom," could not have 
had in mind the one north and east of the city. If he had, he must 
have reckoned Jerusalem to Judah, as an earlier writer ( JE, Jos. 15 63 ) 
seems to have done. 6 As a matter of fact, in 18- 8 he distinctly 
assigns it to Benjamin, which he could not have done unless the 
valley of Hinnom had meant to him the one that bounded the city 
on the west and south, the modern Wady er-Rababi. 7 

The foregoing exposition, showing that " the ravine of Hinnom " 
is not another name for the Kidron, ought to render the identifica- 
tion of En-rogel with the Virgin's Spring untenable ; since the author 
of Jos. 15 8 and i8 1G says nothing about the stretch down the Kidron 
between the spring and the mouth of the other valley, and it is hardly 
credible that any one should have drawn the line between Judah and 
Benjamin in this zigzag fashion. Still, there are those who, like 
Conder in his article on Jerusalem in Hastings' Dictionary, although 
they locate the ravine of Hinnom correctly, hold the contradictory 
opinion with reference to En-rogel. It is necessary, therefore, to 
discuss more at length the location of this spring. Several reasons 
are given for identifying it with the Virgin's Spring. The one that 
seems to have proven most cogent is found in the similarity between 
Zoh£leth, the name of a stone said to have been near the spring, and 
Zahwayleh, which, according to Clermont-Ganneau {PEF. 1870, 
251 sq.), is used to designate a flight of steps by which the natives 
of Silwan cut short the distance from the spring to their village on 
the slope opposite. See Survey of Western Palestine, Jerusalem, 
293 sq. On examination, however, the striking correspondence be- 
tween the two names loses some of its significance. In the first place, 
the inhabitants of Silwan are not unanimous in applying the name 
Zahwayleh to the ascent described. Secondly, if they were, since it 
probably means simply a slide, and could be applied to half a dozen 
places along the side of the hill between the tomb of Absalom and 

6 The use of this passage and Jud. I 8 - 21 by Birch {PEF. 1878, 179) to sustain 
his view that Jerusalem belonged partly to Judah and partly to Benjamin is 
entirely unwarranted. On Jud. I 21 , see Moore, Coi?un. 20 sq. 

7 The identification of Hinnom with Kidron is forbidden, also, by the facts that 
the former is always called 3. gai and the latter a nahal, and that in 2 Kgs. 23, 
where both occur, they evidently lie in different directions. See vs. 6 - 10 - 12 . 



Bir 'Ayyub, it is hardly safe to conclude that this is the only one to 
which it has ever been given. As a matter of fact, there is a flight 
of steps in the native rock considerably nearer to Bir 'Ayyub than 
the one above described is to the Virgin's Spring. Thirdly, since 
the biblical designation is properly, not "the stone Zoheleth," but 
"the Stone of the Zoheleth," i.e. 'of the creeper' (Deut. 32 24 ), it is 
more probable that the latter word denotes something, e.g. the ser- 
pent, after which the object intended was named than that it describes 
a characteristic of that object. See 'Eben-bohan, Jos. 15 6 , and 'Eben- 
ha'ezer, 1 Sam. 4 1 . Finally, since the word *eben is never elsewhere 
in the Old Testament used of the native rock, it is highly improbable 
that in this case it was applied to any part of the rocky slope on the 
eastern side of the valley of Kidron. 8 In view of these considera- 
tions the similarity between Zoheleth and Zahwayleh ought not to 
weigh very heavily against the necessary inference from the discussion 
of the location of the ravine of Hinnom, that 'En-rogel is the ancient 
name for Bir 'Ayyub. 

The objections to this view are not of a serious character. Warren 
e.g. says of Bir 'Ayyiib that it is properly a well (bter), not a spring 
i^ayiii). This point is not well taken, for in Gen. 24 both words 
are used by the same author of the source from which the people 

8 In Gen. 49 24 , the last line of which the Revisers render, 

" From thence is the shepherd, the stone of Israel/' 

* eben appears to be used in the sense of sftr, i rock, cliff '; but here the text is evi- 
dently corrupt. Gunkel, by slightly changing the pointing of the first two words, 
gets the equivalent of 

" By the name of the shepherd of the Israel-stone," 

which he explains as meaning the shepherd dwelling in the stone at Bethel. He 
suggests, however, that the correctness of the text is doubtful. If he had given 
the matter further thought, he would doubtless have seen the bearing on this verse 
of 48 15 , where Jacob is represented as beginning his blessing on Joseph with the 


" The God before whom my fathers, Abraham and Isaac, walked, 
The God who hath shepherded me all my life unto this day." 

Then, by an emendation, V3K for pS, which would have suggested itself, he 
would have obtained a reading that makes the troublesome line an intelligible 
parallel to the preceding. The couplet, thus emended, reads, 

" By the hands of the Mighty One of Jacob, 
By the name of the Shepherd of his father Israel." 

For proof of the correctness of this reading, see the next verse. 



ik loll® 

< : 



of Harran drew water, and, moreover, as every one who has spent 
any length of time at Jerusalem knows, Blr 'Ayyub in the winter over- 
flows, and becomes as truly a spring as that of the Virgin. 9 It is 
further objected that Bir 'Ayyub cannot be En-rogel because it is so 
far from the King's Garden that Josephus (Antt. vii. 14, 4) could not 
have spoken of it as being in it. The facts are, that the Virgin's 
Spring is at one end, and Blr 'Ayyub near the other, of the succession 
of gardens now cultivated by the people of Silwan, but that the latter 
is nearer than the former to the mouth of the valley, now el- Wad, 
running nearly north and south through the city, in the vicinity of 
which, according to Neh. 3 15 , the King's Garden was located. 
Finally, it is asserted that Bir ? Ayyub cannot be substituted without 
confusing the reader in the narratives in which En-rogel occurs. 
This is incorrect. Take the case of 2 Sam. 17 17 . Is it not more 
reasonable to look for the hiding-place of Jonathan and Ahimaaz 
half a mile distant than almost under the royal palace? So, also, in 
the case of 1 Kgs. i 9 . The last place for the meeting of the partisans 
of Adonijah would have been the vicinity of the public spring, in full 
view from the city. 10 The friends of Solomon, on the other hand, 
would naturally assemble as near the city as possible. Hence, En- 
rogel must here also be identified with Bir 'Ayyiib, and the Gihon 
of v. 3a not, as Warren {DB., art. ' Hinnom ') maintains, with the Pool 
of Siloam ( c Ain Silwan) — for the tunnel had not yet been built — 
but with the Virgin's Spring. 

The identification of En-rogel with Bir 'Ayyub strengthens the 
argument in favor of Wady er-Rababi as the ravine of Hinnom. It 
is, therefore, unfavorable, not only to Warren's view, but to that pro- 
posed by Birch (PEF. 1878, 179 sq.), and adopted by W. R. Smith 
{Enc. Brit.) and others, according to which this ravine was el- 
Wad. There is the further objection to the latter opinion that, if, as 
it assumes, the ancient city was confined to the eastern hill, it is 
difficult to understand why the tunnel from the Virgin's Spring should 
have been carried through to the western side of it. 

The ravine of Hinnom having been identified, the next question 
is whether this is the ravine from which the Ravine Gate took its 
name. The great majority of those who have raised this question 
have answered it in the affirmative ; and with reason, for not only is 

9 On the 23d of January, 1902, the people of Jerusalem and the vicinity cele- 
brated such an overflow by visiting the well in great numbers. 

10 The people of Silwan have no difficulty in making themselves understood by 
persons on the opposite hill, where the palace of David was situated. 


the word here rendered " ravine " always found with " Hinnom " 
(Jos. 15 8 18 16 Neh. 11 30 Ezek. 39 15 ) or "the son of Hinnom" (Jos. 
15 8 18 16 2 Kgs. 23 10 Jer. y 31 - 82 - 85 2 Chr. 28 s 33 s ), but it is used alone 
to designate the same ravine (Jer. 2- 3 31 40 ), and there is no other 
depression about Jerusalem to which it is ever applied. This being 
the case, it can hardly be doubted that the Ravine Gate was some- 
where on the western or southern side of the city, and that it was 
so called because it gave exit to the ravine which, beginning at the 
Pool of Mamilla, west of the Jaffa Gate, runs, first eastward nearly to 
the city, then southward along the hill incorrectly called Zion, and 
finally eastward again along the southern side of that hill to the 
Kidron. But at what point on this ravine was it located? The most 
prevalent opinion is that it was on the west side of the city not far 
from the present Jaffa Gate. Robinson (BRP. i. 473) identifies it 
with the gate Gennath, which, according to Josephus (BJ. v. 4, 2), 
was in the first wall near the point from which the second started, 
i.e. not far from the so-called Tower of David. 11 Similarly Warren 
(DB., art. ' Hinnom ') and Bliss (EJ. 296). Schick (ZDPV. viii. 272) 
locates it in an outwork of which he claims to have found remains 
outside the present wall, a few rods southwest of the Jaffa Gate. If, 
however, there was a gate where Schick admits that the gate Gen- 
nath must have been, it would have been unnecessary to have 
another so near, opening into the same quarter of the city. The 
identification of the Ravine Gate with the gate Gennath is also open 
to objection. This gate, if in the first wall, east of the corner, must 
have faced toward the saddle connecting the western hill (traditional 
Zion) with the high ground to the north and the northwest, and, 
therefore, although the upper and shallower part of the ravine was 
not far distant, would hardly have been called the Ravine Gate. It 
is far more probable that the gate Gennath was the Gate of Ephraim, 
which, according to Neh. t 2 39 , lay in the route of one of the proces- 
sions when the wall was dedicated, and that the Ravine Gate is to 
be sought farther southward. 

There was a gate in this direction which could, with much greater 
propriety, have been named the Ravine Gate. The remains of it 
were unearthed by Bliss during his search for the ancient southern 
wall {EJ. 16 sqq.). These remains represent four distinct periods, 
there being so many sills laid one upon another. In the earliest 

11 On the attempt to identify this gate with a ruined entrance at the lower end 
of Haret ed-Dewayeh, six hundred feet directly east of the Tower of David, see 
PER 1892, 186 sq. 



Wady Rababi. 

A view northward of the part that bounded the city on the west. 


period it was eight feet and ten inches wide. 12 It was located about 
six hundred feet from the southwest corner of the ancient city, now 
marked by Bishop Gobat's School, and gave exit into the upper part 
of the last and deepest stretch of the ravine of Hinnom, the one 
in which the ancient Hebrews are supposed to have practised the 
unholy rites of Molech. At present it seems an unlikely site for an 
entrance to a city ; but there is a path up the hill a little farther to 
the east, and in earlier times there was doubtless an easier approach 
to this point. 13 

To the fitness of the name may be added another reason for 
believing this to be the Ravine Gate, viz. the distance between it 
and the next gate eastward. The Chronicler (Neh. 3 13 ) says that 
from the Ravine Gate to the Dung Gate was 1000 cubits. 14 If, 
now, the Ravine Gate be located near the present Jaffa Gate, the 
one whose location has just been described will have to be identified 
with the Dung Gate. But, according to Tobler (TJ. i. 76), it is 
1400 feet from the Jaffa Gate to the southwest corner of the present 
wall, and, as measured on the latest maps, it is about 1200 feet far- 
ther to the newly discovered entrance ; so that the distance between 
the Ravine Gate and the Dung Gate, as thus located, would be about 
2600 feet, or considerably more than 1000 cubits of the most liberal 
length. On the other hand, the distance from the first to the second 
of the gates discovered by Bliss is only about 1900 feet, which is 
much nearer the Chronicler's estimate. These gates may therefore, 
with considerable confidence, be identified with the Ravine Gate 

12 The following is a list of the gates now in use, with the inside width of each 
of them : 

ft. in. 

West side: Jaffa Gate (Bab el-Halll) , . 11 11 

South side : Zion Gate (Bab en-Nebi Daiid) .... t . 10 7 

South side : Dung Gate (Bab el-Mugharibeh) ...... 4 5 

East side : St. Stephen's Gate (Bab Sitti Maryam) .... 10 10 

North side : Herod's Gate (Bab es-Sahireh, ez-Zahrlyeh) ..54 
North side : Damascus Gate (Bab el-'Amud) ...... 14 7 

North side: New Gate (Bab 'Abdul- II amid) 13 2 

In the case of Herod's Gate it is the width of the old entrance that is given. 

13 In this path, about half the way up, may still be seen several steps in the 
rock to ease the ascent. 

14 This is the natural interpretation of the passage. Had the author meant to 
say that 1000 cubits were only a part of the distance between the two gates, 
he would hardly have added the words, " as far as the Dung Gate." Cf. Guthe, 
ZDPV. v. 297. 


The Ravine Gate. 

The ruined entrance discovered by Bliss, and wrongly identified with the Dung Gate. 


and the Dung Gate respectively. 15 See Klaiber, ZDPV. hi. 209 ; 
T. F. Wright, youmal of Biblical Literature, xv. 129 sqq. 

Nehemiah says that on issuing from the Ravine Gate he went 
" toward the Dragon Spring." The identity of this spring is uncer- 
tain. Caspari (SK. 1864, 318) believes that Nehemiah here refers 
to the aqueduct by which the water collected at the Pools of Solo- 
mon was brought to Jerusalem ; and at first sight it seems as if the 
windings of this conduit must have suggested the name he employs. 
See also Schick, ZDPV. xiv. 42. This, however, is a mistake, since, 
if the Ravine Gate, as has been shown, was in the south wall near 
the southwest corner of the city, the governor, as he issued from it, 
rode, not " toward," but along the aqueduct, which at this point ran 
close to the wall on the outside. On the other hand, the expression 
"toward" is perfectly suitable if, as Stade (GVL ii. 165) suggests, 
" Dragon Spring " is only another name for En-rogel, so called from 
the stone Zoheleth in its immediate vicinity. 

The correctness of the location assigned to the Dung Gate is 
favored by the two following facts : viz. that the site selected for it 
is on the road down the Tyropoeon upon which the present Dung 
Gate opens ; and that the great sewer down the valley passes under 
it, and probably ended not far from it. The ruins of this gate are 
described by Bliss (EJ. %>%> sqq.), who, however, having placed the 
Ravine Gate near the present Jaffa Gate and the Dung Gate near 
the Protestant Cemetery (EJ. 322), naturally concludes that this 
second entrance through the southern wall, near the southeast corner 
of the ancient city, is the Fountain Gate (EJ. 296, 327 sq.). It was 
well placed to accommodate those who wished to reach the city from 
the direction of En-rogel and lower Kidron, being at the very end 
of the southwestern hill, where it slopes off into the King's Garden. 
It was an ancient gate, for there are clear indications of three 
periods in its history; and it was broad enough to accommodate a 
large traffic, being nine feet and six inches wide in its latest dimen- 
sions. It was finally strengthened by a tower of heavy masonry, 
which formed the southeast corner of the wall. 

From the Dung Gate, according to the English Version (v. 14 ), 

15 This is probably the gate that Josephus (BJ. v. 4, 2) mentions under the 
name of the Gate of the Essenes. See Robinson (BRP. i. 473) > who, however, 
identifies it with the Dung Gate of the Old Testament. So also Schick, ZDPV. 
xiv. 49 ; Bliss, EJ. 322. W. R. Smith (Enc. Brit., xiii. 640) takes advantage 
of this error in his attempt to show that the Ravine of Hinnom is the Tyropoeon 





Nehemiah says he " went on " to the Fountain Gate and the King's 
Pool. The word rendered " went on," 16 however, although it is 
sometimes correctly so translated (Gen. 18 5 2 Sam. 18 9 etc.), is most 
frequently used of passing over something, e.g. a river (Gen. 31 21 Jos. 
4 22 etc.). There is therefore an antecedent probability that it is here 
used in the latter sense ; and this probability is strengthened by the 
fact that in the next verse ( ir> ) the writer takes pains to employ the 
verb meaning ascend 11 to describe his further progress. If, however, 
he meant to say that he " crossed " to the Fountain Gate, there can 
be little doubt that what he crossed was el-Wad, and that not 
only is the Dung Gate correctly identified with the one unearthed 
by Bliss on the south of this valley, but the Fountain Gate must be 
sought on the other side of it. Now, Bliss has proved that the wall 
of the city originally crossed the valley below the wall that now 
serves as a dam for the old pool now called Birket ei-Hamra, and 
just after crossing made an angle admirably adapted to the defence 
of a gate which, on his key map, he locates at the end of the " Hill 
of Ophel." Here, therefore, must have been the entrance which 
Nehemiah calls the Fountain Gate. See Guthe, ZDPV. v. 296. 

It is objected that the location proposed is forbidden by Neh. 3 1 ", 
where the Fountain Gate is mentioned before the pool by the 
King's Garden, which is commonly identified with Birket el- 
Hamra. This seems to be the reason why Conder (DB. y art. l Jeru- 
salem ') locates the gate " near the southeast slope of the upper 
city." But the point is not well taken. Did the Chronicler intend 
to represent the Dung Gate and the Fountain Gate as adjoining each 
other? 18 It is therefore necessary to adopt the interpretation of 
Bertheau, that the inversion of the natural order in this case is a 
mere variation, suggested by the comparative importance of the 
gate in question. Cf. Klaiber (ZDPV. iii. 203 sqq.), who, although 
he places the Fountain Gate on the farther side of el-Wad, in- 
sists that the parts assigned are mentioned in their actual order, 
and therefore locates the gate some distance above the mouth of 
the valley, to make room for a wall running southeast from it to 
the King's Garden. The variety of masonry found by Bliss in the 
wall across the mouth of the valley seems to make this theory 
untenable. Nor is it necessary to place the gate at the mouth of 

16 % dbar. 1T % alah. 

18 Bliss (E/. 87 sq.) discovered another opening in the wall just west of the 
one above identified with the Dung Gate, but, as it was only four feet and ten 
inches wide, he concluded that it was not " an exterior gate of the city." 




C/2 P3 



the tunnel to account for the name it bore, since a gate by which 
one entered the city to reach the fountain would naturally be called 
the Fountain Gate, especially if, as in this case, the canal that 
carried away the waste water passed through or near it. See Guthe, 
ZDPV. v. 296 sq. 

With the Fountain Gate Nehemiah couples the King's Pool. If 
the former was beyond el-Wad, the natural inference is that the 
latter was on the same side of the valley. Hence, Guthe {ZDPV, 
v. 357) and others locate it at the end of the tunnel on the east 
side of el-Wad, some rods above its mouth. Guthe found there 
a part of such a pool. He lays stress on its location, and interprets 
Neh. 2 15 as indicating that the governor attempted to go up the 
valley, but, finding his way in this direction blocked, went back 
through the Fountain Gate and ascended the Kidron. It is not 
clear, however, that the passage means all this. If it seems 
necessary to identify the King's Pool with 'Ain Silwan, would it 
not be better to explain the words " to the Fountain Gate and to 
the King's Pool " as meaning to the gate giving entrance to the 
Fountain and the King's Pool, the two being so closely associated 
in the writer's mind that he could not mention the one without the 
other? This form of the view proposed is favored by the fact that 
Nehemiah evidently did not enter the Dung Gate, and there is 
nothing but the mention of the Pool to indicate that he reached the 
inside of the city by the Fountain Gate. 19 

If, however, Nehemiah did not enter the gate, there is something 
to be said for two other hypotheses, the first being that the King's 
Pool was the modern Birket el-Hamra, the northeast corner of 
which was only a step from the point where it is proposed to place 
the Fountain Gate. This pool, of course, was not on the farther 
side of el- Wad — in fact, it was the lower end of the valley — 
but the gates were so located with reference to it that, in the ruined 
condition of the city, the easiest way to reach it was through the 
Fountain Gate. It might be objected to this interpretation that 
in 3 15 the pool commonly identified with Birket el-Hamra is called 
by a different name, viz. the Pool of the Conduit ; but this objection 
loses much of its force when one remembers that chapter 3 is not by 
the same hand as the passage now under consideration. 

The second possible view is that of Robinson {BRP. i. 474), who 
identifies the King's Pool with the Virgin's Spring. If this were 

19 The object of his reconnaissance did not require him to do so. 

A Corner in the Wall 

near the ancient Dung Gate. 


correct, it would be easier to understand the blockade of which 
Nehemiah speaks (v. 14 ) ; for the Kidron is considerably narrower 
at the spring than at the mouth of el-Wad, and one can more 
easily imagine it filled above than below with the debris of the ruined 
wall. There is, however, one serious objection to this identification, 
viz. that the Hebrew word 20 by which Robinson supposes the spring 
to be designated is never elsewhere in the Old Testament used in 
this sense, but always denotes a proper pool, and usually an artificial 
one. See 2 Kgs. 20- . This objection seems insurmountable. It 
will, therefore, be necessary to choose between the other two inter- 
pretations, and in view of the proximity of the lower pool to the 
supposed site of the Fountain Gate, the one that identifies this pool 
with the King's Pool seems the more acceptable. 

In chapter 12 Nehemiah, in his description of the routes of the 
processions by which the completion of his work was celebrated, 
mentions the gates and other prominent features of the entire wall. 
He does not say where these processions started, but from the fact 
that the first point noted in the march of the one that went south 
was the Dung Gate (v. 31 ) it is plain that the point of departure was 
the Ravine Gate. One can think of several reasons for choosing 
this as the starting point. It is probable that when the city was 
taken by Nebuchadrezzar, as when it was captured by Titus ( Josephus, 
BJ. vii. 1, 1), the southwestern part suffered less than the others; 
that, when Nehemiah became governor, the most of the inhabitants 
lived in this quarter ; and that, therefore, it was most convenient for 
them to assemble at the Ravine Gate. Then, too, from this gate 
the distance to the temple by the two routes was more nearly equal 
than from any other. 

The procession that took the southern route marched on the wall, 
first to the Dung Gate (v. 31 ), as above noticed, 21 and then to and over 
the Fountain Gate (v. 37 ). Thus far nothing new has appeared; but 
from this point onward the whole description of the course of the 
wall is additional to what can be learned from chapter 2. 

When this company reached the Fountain Gate, they were at the 
foot of the southern end of the hill on which once lay the city of 
David, the oldest quarter of Jerusalem. From this point, says v. 37 , 
they went " straight forward," in the same direction in which they 
had been going when they crossed the valley, up the hill. Here, 

20 berekak. 21 The text has b, ' toward.' 


however, according to Stade (GVI. ii. 175) and others, they left 
the wall and took the path up the steps by which the ascent had 
usually been made. No one seems to know why they should have 
done this, unless it was because the wall, as it ran up the hill, did 
not furnish so good a means of ascent as the steps below. There is 
reason to doubt the correctness of this supposition and to believe, on 
the other hand, that it was easier to follow the newly finished wall 
than to pick one's way among the debris by which the streets in this 
quarter must have been choked.' 22 Indeed, the author seems really 
to have intended to say that the procession went up the hill on the 
wall. There are two significant phrases, for one of which 23 the 
English Version has " by the stairs of the city of David " and for 
the other, 24 "at the going up (AR., 'ascent') of the wall." In 
the former the preposition employed does not denote means, but 
position. It might, therefore, have been rendered "on" — and prob- 
ably the English translators intended their " by" to be understood in 
this sense — but it would have been equally correct to translate it 
" above " (Gen. 19 23 ), or " along " with the implied idea of elevation 
(Job i 14 ). Which of these renderings is best must be determined by 
an examination of the other expression. In this case the preposition 
is not the same as in the first, but is the one used by Nehemiah in 
chapter 2 to describe the way by which he made his exit from (v. 13 ), 
and his entrance into (v. 15 ), the city, also that by which he proceeded 
beyond the point where he was obliged to leave his beast (v. 15 ). If, 
now, this description of the route of the first procession (except the 
names) is from the hand of the governor, as it probably is, one seems 
warranted in taking the preposition in the present instance in the 
same sense as in the others and rendering it, not " at," but " by," or 
more exactly " by means of." This being done, it will be necessary 
to adopt the rendering " above " or " along " in the preceding phrase, 
or to omit the whole phrase as an interpolation suggested by 3 15 . 
The writer will then say what he doubtless intended to say, namely, 
that from the Fountain Gate 25 the procession went up the hill by the 
wall, stepped as it now is in similar places, having on the left, below, 

22 It is still about as easy to walk on the wall of Jerusalem as on the ground, 
even up a slope, since the wall, also, is stepped like the steeper streets. 

23 ' ' al mdalot x lr dawid. 24 bamdaleh lahomdh. 

25 The use of W instead of me' al before the name of this gate has no signifi- 
cance, as appears from the interchange of the prepositions in v. 39 . The sugges- 
tion of Guthe (ZDPV. viii. 279) that me'al indicates the points that were left to 
one side, but 'al those which were actually touched, is certainly mistaken, as one 


El- Wad, from Birket el-Ham ra, 

with the site, near the minaret, of "Ain Silwan. 


the steps in the rock by which it was customary to climb the ascent 
into the city of David. 

Farther on they passed above "the house of David," or the ruins of 
it, which therefore must have been on the east side of the ridge, 
where, as Klaiber {ZDPV. xi. 12 sq.) puts it, one could enjoy " the 
finest outlook and most convenient access to the gardens to the 
south," and not, as Schick (ZDPV. xiv. 55) and Guthe {ZDPV. v. 
331 sq.) maintain, on the western slope. 

The Water Gate, also, the last point mentioned in the route of the 
first procession, is described as being " eastward," but there is no 
express statement indicating how far northward it was located. This 
point must, therefore, be determined, if at all, by inference from 
suggestions in this passage, with any assistance that can be gained 
from chapter 3. In the first place, its name would require one to 
look for this gate in the vicinity of the Virgin's Spring. The spring 
was always where it now is. Moreover, the city was much more 
dependent upon it for water in early times than it is at the present 
day. This is clear from the immense amount of work expended in 
cutting the tunnel from it to the other side of the hill. Hence, 
there must always have been a path to it, and a gate from which this 
path started. At present there are two paths from it to the top of 
the ridge ; one turning to left, running diagonally southwestward, 
and reaching the supposed line of the ancient wall about halfway 
between the southern end of the hill and the southeastern corner of 
the present wall, where Guthe found the remains of a tower and a 
drain. Moreover, the spot where the drain passed the tower, accord- 
ing to Guthe's map of his excavations, is directly over the tunnel 
near the most westerly point reached in its course. Here, perhaps, 
was the Water Gate in the earliest times, before the temple had been 
built and the royal residence removed to its vicinity. 

The other path turns to the right, as it leaves the spring, runs in a 
northeasterly direction, and reaches the line of the ancient wall at a 

can learn by attempting to apply it. Thus (v. 31 ) Nehemiah brings the princes 
up — in spite of the fact that the gate is below the city — on one side of the wall. 
Then the first procession, as it advances, leaves on one side the wall to (better, 
and, for another meal I) the Dung Gate, but when it reaches the Fountain Gate 
(v. 37 ) it is on the wall, and just beyond that point it marches on the steps, leaving 
on one side the house of David. So also, the second (vs. 38s «) leaves the wall, 
the Ovens' Gate, and the Gate of Ephraim on one side, but when it comes to the 
Gate of the Old ... it finds itself on the second wall, which it henceforth follows. 
This cannot have been the meaning of the author. One must therefore conclude 
that, if the text is correct, the two expressions were used interchangeably. 


point about four hundred feet from the southeastern corner of the 
present wall, very near the great tower which Warren unearthed during 
his excavations. This, moreover, is the point where the path running 
north and south along the edge of the ridge crosses that which con- 
nects David's Gate with the road to Bethany. Warren does not 
report any traces of a gate in this vicinity, but the indications point 
to the existence of an entrance by which water could be brought 
directly to the upper part of the city. This is the way by which 
water from the Virgin's Fountain is still carried to Jerusalem. When- 
ever the cisterns get low, strings of donkeys, laden with dripping 
skins, may be seen climbing this path and making their way across 
the top of the hill to the present Dung Gate. 

Here, then, it is pretty safe to locate the Water Gate " eastward," 
the limiting word being added, perhaps, because there was another 
on the western side of the hill, through which water was brought 
after the excavation of the tunnel. At this gate, according to 8 1 , 
there was an open space large enough for the accommodation of a 
multitude of people. Conder (BD., art. ' Jerusalem ') suggests that 
this gate led to the spring, "probably by the rocky [rock- cut] shaft 
[better, passage] which runs up to the surface of the hill, at the back 
of [above] the cave in which the Gihon [Virgin's Fountain] wells 
up " ; but, since the excavation of this passage has never been com- 
pleted, it is hardly safe to assume that it ended outside the wall, 
where any one who went for water would be only a little less exposed 
than if there were no such contrivance. 26 If, therefore, there was 
a gate where Conder locates this one, it was probably the original 
entrance through which the earliest inhabitants of the city of David 
brought water from the spring. There is, however, this objection to 
supposing that Nehemiah had a gate at this point in mind ; namely, 
that if the account of the route of the first procession is complete, 
whether the temple or the royal palace was its destination (v. 40 ), since 
the Water Gate is the last point mentioned, it must nave been nearer 
the entrance to the sacred enclosure. This interpretation is sup- 
ported by 2> 25sq ' in the correct reading. In the Masoretic text of 
this passage the author says (v. 25 ) that Pedaiah had a share in the 
reconstruction of the wall, but does not describe the part that he 
repaired. Guthe (SBOT.) suggests — and the suggestion is its own 
justification — that the reference to the Nethinim in v. 26 is an inter- 
s' 5 The point to which it was traced is a hundred and eighty feet west of the 



polation. If, now, this statement be omitted and the rest of the 
verse attached to v. 256 , the whole will read, "After him [repaired] 27 
Pedaiah, the son of Parosh, as far as the front of the Water Gate 
eastward and the projecting tower." The conclusion seems irre- 
sistible that the Chronicler, at least, located the Water Gate at the 
tower discovered by Warren near the top of the hill, and by him 
identified with the "projecting tower" of this passage (RJ. 295). 
The phraseology here used, "as far as the front of," may denote 
that, when the wall was repaired, the tower, which was a very 
large one with a projection of forty-one and a half feet (SWP. 
Jerusalem, 228), was left outside, and with it the gate which it 
protected. 28 

The second procession, according to Neh. 12 38 , starting from the 
Ravine Gate, like the first, took its way northward on the wall, the 
first prominent point passed being the Ovens' Tower. This tower 
is located by Schick (ZDPV. xiv. 51) and others near the present 
Tower of David ; but Stade, according to whom the Gate of Ephraim 
was at this corner, prefers to place it about the middle of the western 
wall of what Josephus calls the upper city, i.e. midway between the 
Jaffa Gate and Bishop Gobat's School (GVL ii. 167). The latter 
opinion is to be preferred, but even this is not entirely satisfactory. 
If, as has been shown, the Ravine Gate was east of the Protestant 
Cemetery, and the Gate of Ephraim near the northern end of the 
same hill, the Ovens' Tower must have been between these two 
points. But why midway between them, where, so far as has ever 
been ascertained, there are no traces of particularly strong fortifica- 
tions? On the other hand, at the southwest corner of the ancient 
city, where the school now stands, there was a tower the base of 
which, twenty feet high, was hewn from the native rock. It was 
nearly square, projecting about forty-five feet from the scarp to 
which it was attached (PEF. 1875, 8 3)- 29 It: was therefore a promi- 
nent and noteworthy feature of the wall, one that could hardly be 
omitted in any description of the fortifications of the city. Here, 
then, should be the Ovens' Tower of the account of the dedica- 

27 The verb is as easily supplied here as in the preceding sentence. 

28 There is the same divergence between an earlier and a later course at one 
point in the southern wall excavated by Bliss. See EJ. 24 sqq. 

29 There are conflicting statements in Conder's reports with reference to this 
tower. On p. 8 of the volume cited he says that it is about twenty-five feet square; 
but in his more detailed description he gives the figures above quoted, and they 
are in substantial agreement with his plan. 

An Ascent by the Wall. 


tion. It was probably so called because there were ovens in the 
vicinity. 30 

Next in order to the Ovens' Tower comes the Broad Wall. This 
has apparently greatly perplexed those who have undertaken to trace 
the course of the ancient wall of Jerusalem. At any rate, the opin- 
ions with reference to it are many and very divergent. Thus Schick, 
for instance (ZDPV. viii. 270), supposes it to have formed the east- 
ern wall of the Patriarch's Pool; Guthe (ZDPV. viii. 282 sq.), a 
part of the first wall east of the point where it was joined by the 
second. 31 On the other hand, Stade (GVL ii. 167) represents it as 
that which enclosed a rounded corner just south of the present Tower 
of David, where, owing to the upward slope of the ground outside, 
there was need of stronger defensive works, and where he locates the 
Gate of Ephraim. See also Conder, DB., art. ' Jerusalem.' 

In support of this opinion a passage which, through a corruption 
of the text, has hitherto escaped attention may perhaps be cited. It 
is the last clause of 3 s . The verb there used 32 commonly means 
' leave ' ; but " they left Jerusalem as far as the Broad Wall " is so 
clearly not the thought of the author that various attempts have been 
made to find a satisfactory rendering for this word or recover the 
original of which it is a corruption. Thus, it has been suggested by 
Guthe that the verb actually found in the text may be connected 
with a Mishnic word mddzibah, ( pavement,' and rendered " paved." ** 
It is difficult to think of Nehemiah and his people, who were strain- 
ing every nerve to rear the wall as a protection against active enemies, 
as undertaking at the same time to pave the streets of the city ; and it 
would be better to adopt the interpretation of the English translators, 
" fortify " — also resting ultimately on a combination with mddzibah 
— than to force so unreasonable a meaning upon the present reading. 
An even more decisive consideration is that mddzibah does not mean 
pavimentum (Buxtorf, Guthe), but the material — usually poles, brush, 
and earth — of which the flat roof of a house was made. 

It is possible that the original verb was the one from which is de- 
rived the noun 34 used in 2 Chr. 4 9 and 6 13 of the great court of the 

30 The English Version renders the name given to this tower " the Tower of 
the Furnaces," but it is doubtful if the word (Jannur) can properly be translated 
furnace. In this case the use of the plural probably points to the custom;, still 
practised in Palestine, of building ovens in clusters. 

31 Guthe, as already noted, that he may hold this view, is obliged to make a 
distinction between *al and me'al, for which there is no warrant in the connection. 

32 x azab. 33 ZDPV. viii. 282 sq. 34 'azara/i. 


temple and in Ezek. 43 14 - 17, 20 45 19 of a ledge or border. Kraetzschmar 
connects it with the Assyrian ese?'u, which he renders ' umschranken.' 
A word meaning ' enclose ' would certainly be an improvement. 
The whole sentence would then read, " they enclosed Jerusalem as 
far as the Broad Wall," and the interpretation of this statement would 
be as follows : The author of chapter 3 begins the partition of the 
wall at the Sheep Gate. He must therefore have followed the second 
wall, which, according to Josephus, began its westward course at the 
citadel, in his time called Antonia, at the northwest corner of the 
temple precincts. This wall ran westward — its exact course may 
for the present be left indefinite — as far as the gate Gennath, enclos- 
ing a distinct portion of the city. Now, nothing could be more nat- 
ural than that the Chronicler, when he had finished the partition of 
this wall, should call attention to the fact that, by its reconstruction, 
since the first wall had probably suffered less than the external line 
of defence, the part of the city lying between the two was " enclosed," 
and already adequately protected. In any case it is more than prob- 
able that the Broad Wall was that part of the first wall from which 
the second started at its western end and in or near which was the 
Gate of Ephraim/' 5 This gate, as has already been shown, was near 
the northwest corner of the first wall, and therefore west of the point 
where the second began its course. 

The next point noted (v. 89 ), according to the English Version, is 
"the Old Gate." This, however, is not a correct translation of the 
original. In the Hebrew name 36 the adjective does not agree with 
the noun expressed, but apparently with another, a dependent geni- 
tive of the feminine gender, understood ; so that the whole should be 
rendered "the Gate of the Old . . ." What this old object was is not 
clear. Some, e.g. Schultz, supply " the city " ; but this is certainly 
not correct, for, since the Gate of Ephraim cannot have been farther 
south than the position above assigned to it, the gate now sought 
must have been in the second wall and therefore have given entrance, 
not to the older, but to the newer, part of the city. The same con- 
sideration naturally forbids the supposition of Hupfeld that the old 
wall is meant. Hitzig suggests that the missing word is that for 

35 The correctness of the Masoretic reading rflHTl fittim, " the Broad 
Wall," has been taken for granted. In the Vulgate, however, 3 s has "murum 
plateae latioris," i.e. 131PHH flfcin, " the wall of the square," a reading which, 
if adopted, would make it necessary to locate the Gate of Ephraim in this wall. 
See 8 6 ; St. Clair, PEF. 1889, 99. 

36 shciar hayhhdndh. 

The Path from 'Ain Sitti Maryam to the City. 


"pool," 87 and of the three this is by far the most reasonable conjec- 
ture, especially as this word is the only one with which the Hebrew 
adjective occurs in the Old Testament in the feminine. In accordance 
with this suggestion, the gate in question would be the Gate of the 
Old Pool, ue. since the gate must have been near the northwest corner 
of the city, the one now known as the Patriarch's Pool, the gate 
having received its name because it was near the pool, or because it 
gave entrance to the quarter in which the pool was situated. 

The objection will be made that, according to Isa. 22 11 as generally 
interpreted, the Old Pool was situated in another part of the city, 
namely, at the lower end of el-Wad. This interpretation, how- 
ever, is open to criticism. The verse cited belongs to a passage 
( 2 2 96 - lla ) which Duhm pronounces a later addition to the text of 
Isaiah. Perhaps it is only disarranged. At any rate, it is plain that 
the author of it, whoever he may have been, can hardly have written 
the sentences of which it is composed in their present order. The 
disturbing member is v. 96 . It interrupts the connection between v. (Ja 
and v. 10 . It must therefore be rejected as a gloss, or inserted after 
v. lla , of which it seems to have been intended to complete the mean- 
ing. The whole passage thus rearranged reads as follows : " And the 
breaches of the city of David ye saw, that they were many ; and the 
houses of Jerusalem ye numbered, yea, ye tore down the houses to 
strengthen the wall ; and a reservoir ye made between the two walls 
for the water of the Old Pool, and ye collected the water of the Lower 
Pool." Now, it is evident that a reservoir built in the time of Isaiah 
could not at once have been called the Old Pool, in other words, that 
the two are not identical. It is equally clear that, since the new pool 
was intended to receive water from the other, it must have been on 
a lower level, so that in comparison it would naturally be called the 
Lower Pool, and its contents, the water of the Lower Pool. The 
reservoir of v. lla , therefore, was probably the Lower Pool of v. % . 
Where was it situated? The answer is not difficult, if it be taken for 
granted that the Old Pool was that now known as the Patriarch's 
Pool. The waste from the latter would naturally flow down el-Wad 
to the lower end, where the newly repaired (or built?) wall, acting 
as a dam, would prevent it from escaping into the Kidron. Here, 
then, on the site of the cesspool now called Birket el-Hamra, was 
the Lower Pool intended by the prophet or the editor of his proph- 
ecies. The two walls between which it was situated were the west 
wall of the city of David, and the one on the other side of el- Wad, 

37 herekdh. 



Ml' - 



|\9Hf4 ' 



" x #^3P" 






rP'J ° 







1 W 







< ^' 



running nearly parallel with it, the course of which has been traced 
by Bliss (EJ- 116 sqq.). m It appears, therefore, that the result of the 
examination of the passage from Isaiah 22, so far from weakening 
the argument in favor of locating the Gate of the Old ... in the 
vicinity of the present Patriarch's Pool, 39 only strengthens it. 

There is still another reason for putting it here, namely, that, as 
Birch {PEE. 1879, 177) and W. R. Smith {Encyclopaedia Britan- 
nica, xiii. 640) maintain, this gate must be identified with the Corner 
Gate, which, according to Jer. 31 38 and Zech. 14 10 , was at the north- 
west corner of the city. This view is much preferable to the others 
that have been advanced. Guthe (ZDPV. viii. 280 sq.) finds a place 
for the Corner Gate at an angle between the Patriarch's Pool and 
the former residence of the English bishop. But a gate at this point 
could not, in the time of Jeremiah, after the second wall had been 
built, be taken as marking one of the corners of the city. The posi- 
tion of Schick, who originally (ZDPV. viii. 270) located the Corner 
Gate forty-two metres from the northwest corner of the Patriarch's 
Pool, but finally (ZDPV. xiii. 32 sq.) chose a site for it between 
the towers at the northwest corner of the upper city, identifying it 
with the gate Gennath of Josephus, is also untenable; for in the 
time of Jeremiah what was originally the northwest limit of the city 
could no longer be so considered, since the second wall, projected 
to any distance on a line with the part that has been traced, brings 
the new corner as far west as the old one. 

An objection to the identification proposed is found in the fact 
that in 2 Kgs. 14 18 = 2 Chr. 25 s3 the Corner Gate is one of the points 
between which Jehoash tore down the wall in the reign of Amasiah, 
when as yet, according to the usual interpretation of 2 Chr. 32 s , there 
was no second wall. It will be necessary to examine this latter pas- 
sage a little more closely. A glance at the original is sufficient to 
show that the present text does not warrant the rendering found in 
the English Version. Literally translated it says, " He built all the 
wall that was torn down, and went upon the towers, and outside the 

38 In Neh. 2 14 this pool is called the King's Pool, and in 3 15 the Pool of the 

39 This pool would naturally, in comparison with the other, be called the Upper 
Pool. Hence it is probably the one mentioned 2 Kgs. 18 17 (Isa. 36 2 ) and Isa. 7 3 , 
the conduit being the one by which it was fed from the pool now called Birket 
Mamilla. Perhaps the reference to the " end " of this conduit in Isa. 7 3 means 
that it was Ahaz who built it. Compare the phraseology of 2 Kgs. 18 17 . This 
view now seems to the author preferable to the one expressed in his Isaiah (1897), 
pp. 173 j?. 


(?) other wall." In the first sentence the author evidently means 
to say that Hezekiah rebuilt that part of the wall which was in a 
ruined condition. He gives no hint when the damage was done, but 
he cannot have had that caused by Jehoash in mind, since he him- 
self (2 Chr. 26 9 ) represents Uzziah as strengthening the defences 
about the Corner Gate after he came to the throne. The breaches 
repaired by Hezekiah were, therefore, probably the result of neglect 
or injury in more recent years. The second sentence in its present 
form is unintelligible and, therefore, evidently corrupt ; but it is not 
difficult to conjecture what the author intended to say. The original 
reading was probably either " and upon it the towers " ^ or, better, 
" and he reared upon it towers." 41 In the phrase rendered " the 
other wall," both the text and the meaning are doubtful. The rule 
is that, when the noun is definite, an adjective modifying it must 
have the article. In this case the noun alone has the article, and it 
seems impossible to determine definitely whether this one should be 
dropped or a second prefixed to the adjective. On the whole it is 
easier to explain the loss of one before the adjective than the inser- 
tion of the one that now precedes the noun. 42 Hence, it was prob- 
ably "the other wall" that Hezekiah — built or rebuilt ? The verb 
to be supplied is the one which, in the first sentence, had to be 
interpreted "rebuild," and it is certainly possible that the author, 
when he said that the king " rebuilt all the wall that was torn down, 
rearing upon it towers, also the other wall outside," meant to imply 
that this latter wall also antedated the reign of Hezekiah. It is 
evident, therefore, that one is not obliged to admit a discrepancy 
between this passage and 2 Kgs. 14 13 as above interpreted. Suppose, 
however, that there is such a discrepancy, it can be explained with- 
out disturbing the conclusion based on the evidence previously 
adduced. One might suggest that perhaps the Chronicler in his 
partiality for Hezekiah has attributed to this king more than he 
actually accomplished. Both he and the compiler of the books of 
Kings seem to have done this with respect to the Siloam tunnel. 
See 2 Kgs. 20 20 2 Chr. 32 30 ; cf. Isa. 8 6 . 43 It is, therefore, still pos- 

40 m^ti&n rrbm. 41 mbnaa rrbti btr\ 

42 The only cases in which 'aher is used after a definite noun without the arti- 
cle are in Gen. 43 14 and Jer. 22 26 . In the latter the article before the noun is 
probably a scribal error. See the Greek Version. In 1 Kgs. 7 8 , on the other 
hand, the noun must have lost an article, since the adjective has one. 

43 It is, of course, possible that Isaiah refers to the aqueduct by which the 
water of the Virgin's Spring was brought to the Lower Pool before the tunnel was 

The "Tower of David," 

from the south. 


sible to maintain that the Corner Gate was in the second wall, and 
that it was identical with the Gate of the Old [Pool]. Cf. Guthe, 
ZDPV. viii. 2 79 . 44 

These points being conceded, the next step is to determine, if 
possible, where the second wall cornered. This is a question of 
importance on account of its bearing upon the genuineness of the 
traditional site of Calvary. The general direction of this wall soon 
after it left the first has been known since 1885. The American 
consul, Dr. Merrill, under date of September 15 of that year, re- 
ported {PEF. 1886, 23) that while workmen were excavating for 
the foundations of the Grand New Hotel, "at a depth of fifteen 
feet from the surface of the ground, or rather of the street, a portion 
of the ancient second wall was exposed. Two layers of stone, and 
at two or three points three layers, were found in position. They 
were of the same size and character as the largest of the stones in 
the so-called Tower of David opposite. About thirty yards of this 
wall were uncovered." Later {PEF. 1887, 217 sq.), Schick published 
a plan and description showing the location of the remains, with ref- 
erence to the street just east of them. The direction was a little west 
of north from David Street as a base. No attempt seems ever to 
have been made by special excavations to trace the wall to which 
these interesting remains belonged northward beyond the hotel. 
There is therefore no positive evidence showing how far it ran in 
the same direction. Schick {ZDPV. viii. 266 sqq., xiv. 41 sqq.) 
supposes that it at once made an obtuse angle, and from that point 
followed the line of the street called Haret el-Mawarineh, first north- 
eastward, and then, after another sharper angle, eastward to Christian 
Street ; whence it continued in the same direction as far as the Rus- 
sian Church, leaving the site of the Sepulchre outside of the city. He 
bases his theory on various observations, some of which are unreli- 
able. He locates the northwest corner of the wall, e.g., at the second 
angle in the Haret el-Mawarineh. Here, at a distance of forty-two 
metres from the northwest corner of the Patriarch's Pool, he found 
a number of large stones. He at first thought that they belonged 
to the Corner Gate {ZDPV. viii. 270). He finally changed his 

constructed, but that would not furnish so impressive a figure. On this earlier 
work, see Schick, PEF. 1886, 197 sqq. 

44 In Zech. 14 10 the Gate of the Corner, or, as it is here called, " the Gate of 
the Corners," seems to be located on " the site of the first (or former) gate," but 
there is no clue to the meaning of the author. It is probable that the text needs 






mind with reference to the site of that gate (ZDPV. xiv. 51), and, 
indeed, with reference to the stones at the point designated (PEF. 
1900, 255 sq.) ; but he still maintained that "most likely the second 
wall ran here," although he no longer had any reason for persist- 
ing in this opinion. Now, as a matter of fact, these stones never 
belonged to the second or any other external wall of Jerusalem. 
They belonged, as Schick in the last article cited admits, to a pier, 
one of a number that once supported a large structure, extensive 
remains of which may still be seen in the vicinity, especially under 
a building on the west side of the street. Moreover, these sub- 
structures are in the same style and show the same tooling as the 
undoubtedly Crusading ruins on the west side of the Muristan and 
at El-Blreh. 45 The stones at the corner of Christian Street, by which 
Schick traces the further course of the wall, are probably of the same 

The discovery of this error in Schick's estimate of the age of the 
masonry described is very important. In the first place, it deprives 
him, and those who have accepted his conclusions, of the only rea- 
son that has ever been given for locating the northwest corner of 
the second wall where he locates it. Secondly, it warrants suspicion 
that in other cases, for instance with reference to stones found south 
of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre on the supposed line of the 
wall, he was equally mistaken, 46 and thus renders the acceptance of 
his theory unsafe until the data on which it is based have been 
thoroughly examined and verified. 47 There are those who have 
never accepted it, contending that the second wall must have made 
a wider circuit and enclosed the site of the Sepulchre. It will be 
impossible to decide the matter without further and extensive exca- 
vations ; but if the Corner Gate was in this wall, 2 Kgs. 14 13 = 2 Chr. 
25 23 certainly permits the latter opinion. This passage says that the 
distance between the Gate of Ephraim, which, it is agreed, was 
in the first wall, and the Corner Gate was 400 cubits, or at least 

45 Schick's latest opinion with reference to them is that they are Roman. 

46 He himself says (PEE 1894, 146 sq.) that they rested on debris, and not on 
the rock. 

47 It is certainly too much to say in Italics, with G. A. Smith (EB., art. 'Jeru- 
salem,^ 32), that " Schick's observations appear to have proved " that the second 
wall ran " to the south of the site of the Church.' 1 '' See also Vincent (PB., Jan. 1902) , 
who, by the way, in his plan locates the remains of a wall found in Christian Street 
round the corner in Haret el-Mawarineh, thus (doubtless unintentionally) giving 
it undue significance in the discussion. 

The Market-place near the Jaffa Gate. 

The tall building at the left is the Grand New Hotel, under which are the remains of the second 



600 feet. See Hastings, DB., art. " Weights and Measures." If, 
now, the line of the remains of the second wall discovered on the 
site of the Grand New Hotel be prolonged to a distance of 600 feet 
from the Tower of David, the end of it will fall near the corner of 
Haret el-Istambuliyeh and Haret Deir er-Riim, and another line from 
this point to the northwest corner of the Haram will run north of the 
traditional site of Calvary. It is therefore possible that this little 
eminence may yet be proved to have been inside the city at the 
time of Jesus' crucifixion. 

The next point mentioned in the route of the second procession 
is the Fish Gate. There is little difference of opinion with reference 
to its location, most of the authorities agreeing that it answered to 
the present Damascus Gate, and that therefore it must have been 
situated southeast of the latter in el- Wad. The Chronicler (2 Chr. 
33 14 ) reports that Manasseh strengthened this entrance by fortifying 
the approach to it, but does not give any clue to its position. Cf. 
Kittel, ad loc} % Nor is it possible to derive any further information 
from Zeph. i 10 , where this gate is mentioned in connection with the 
Mishneh (RV. " second quarter "). Why it was called the Fish Gate 
can only be conjectured. It seems to have been the same as the 
Middle Gate of Jer. 39 s . 

The Tower of Hananel is naturally to be sought east of the Fish 
Gate. Jer. 31 38 would lead one to locate it at the eastern end of the 
north wall. Zech. 14 10 , however, couples the Gate of Benjamin with 
the Corner Gate, and mentions the Tower of Hananel as marking 
the northern limit of the city. The discrepancy can be explained 
by supposing that the tower was at the northwest corner of the 
present Haram, and that the wall beyond it ran southeastward ; so 
that, although it was not so far east as the gate, it was farther north, 
and therefore might properly be considered the northeast corner of 
the city. 

The Tower of Hammeah must have been in the immediate vicinity, 
and, like the preceding, a part of the fortress on the rocky eminence 
later occupied by the Antonia, where, according to Josephus (BJ. 

48 Kittel's rendering of this verse, " Afterward he built an outer wall west of 
the city of David toward Gihon in the valley and as far as the entrance to the 
Fish Gate, so that it enclosed Ophel," is absolutely indefensible. What the 
Chronicler actually says is that the king built "an outer wall to (or for) 
the city of David west of Gihon in the valley (of Kidron), and at the entrance 
of the Fish Gate, and he enclosed (but not necessarily entirely) Ophel." See 
the English Version. 


v. 4, 2), the second wall ended. The significance of its name is 
unknown. 49 

The Sheep Gate, by general consent, is located north of the 
temple, in the wall connecting the fortress just mentioned with the 
northeast corner of the sacred enclosure in its original dimensions. 
Outside this wall there was a ravine, a branch of the Kidron, which 
was partly filled up when the area was enlarged, and partly utilized 
in the construction of the great pool, sometimes erroneously identi- 
fied with the Pool of Bethesda, at the north end of it. The path to 
the Sheep Gate ran up this valley. There is ground, as already 
intimated, for believing that the Gate of Benjamin was only another 
name for this entrance to the city. See Jer. 37 13 $8 7 Zech. 14 10 . 50 So 
Guthe (ZDPV. v. 282) and others; cf. Birch, PEF. 1879, 177- 

The second procession halted at the Guard Gate. This is gen- 
erally located at the northeast corner of the temple area. So Stade 
(GVI. ii. 167) and others. Schick formerly (ZDPV. viii. 269) 
held the same opinion, more exactly defining its situation as that of 
the so-called Throne of Solomon about a hundred feet north of the 
Golden Gate ; but later {ZDPV. xiv. 59 sq.) he came to the con- 
clusion that it was on the other side of the temple, and that the 
second procession, following an outer wall, marched past the sanc- 
tuary to the site of the royal palace, and then, turning westward, 
went up to the sacred precincts by one of the great entrances, while 
the first entered by the other. 

There is something to be said for the main feature of this hypoth- 
esis, that the Guard Gate was south of the temple. In the first 
place, it is noticeable that the first procession, according to Neh. 12 37 , 
seems to have stopped at the Water Gate, which, to judge from 3 26s *- ? 
was a little south of the site of the royal palace. Again, it is reason- 
able to suppose that the Guard Gate was connected with the " guard 
court" where Jeremiah was confined. See Jer. 32 s - 8 33 1 37 21 38 61328 
39 14s *-. But, according to Jer. 32 2 , this latter was a part of the royal 
palace. See also Neh. y 5 . In view of these indications one is tempted 
to think that the original account of the celebration of the comple- 
tion of the wall represented the processions as meeting, not at the 
temple, as the present text says, but at the site of the royal palace, 
and that, therefore, the first half of Neh. 12 40 is an interpolation. All 
this is in harmony with the teaching of the evidently genuine portions 

49 This second tower is wanting in some recensions of the Greek Version. 

50 In Jer. 20 2 the Upper Gate of Benjamin is described as "in the house of 


< irt 

'A * 


of the memoirs, to the effect that the reconstruction of the wall was 
a political rather than a religious matter. 51 

Thus far little account has been made of chapter 3, not because it 
was regarded as less important or less trustworthy for the purposes 
of this study, but because it was thought best to discuss it by itself. 
As a matter of fact, since it cannot be much more than a century 
later than the memoirs, and there is no reason to suppose that the 
course of the wall was changed or the designations for its principal 
features greatly modified during that interval, this detailed account 
must be regarded as a valuable supplement to the authentic memoirs 
of Nehemiah. It will now be examined for the sake of obtaining 
any additional information that it may contain, and confirming, or, if 
necessary, correcting, the conclusions already reached. Obviously, 
however, it will not be necessary to dwell on those points with 
respect to which this chapter agrees with the passages already 

The account of the distribution of the work of rebuilding the wall 
begins (v. 1 ) by saying that the Sheep Gate and the wall as far as the 
towers Hammeah and Hananel were repaired by the High Priest. 
The assignment of the Sheep Gate to Eliashib confirms the opinion, 
above expressed, that it was near the temple. The towers are natu- 
rally mentioned in an order the reverse of that of 1 2 89 . 

The wall between the fortress and the Fish Gate gives employment 
to two parties of workmen (v. 2 ) , but that between this gate and the 
next, to four (vs. 4s? ). This apportionment is doubtless intended to 
indicate that the latter portion was at least twice as great as the 
former, which would not be the case if the Gate of the Old . . . 
was where Schick locates it. 

At v. 7 it is necessary to tarry a little to correct a widely accepted 
misinterpretation of the last words, which are rendered in the Author- 
ized Version, "unto the throne of the governor on this side the 

61 Those to whom this suggestion does not appeal will find support for the 
older opinion in 3 31 . From this passage it appears that the northeast corner of 
the temple enclosure was devoted to certain more or less profane uses. The fact 
that the gate leading from it into the court of the temple was called the Watch 
Gate indicates that a guard for the sanctuary was stationed here. It is the north- 
ern entrance to this part of the enclosure, and the one nearest to the point where 
the people would descend from the wall, which Nehemiah calls the Guard Gate. 
Here the second procession would naturally halt and wait for a signal from the 
other, that they might enter the precincts together. 

The Northwest Corner of the Haram. 


river." Even so acute a critic as W. R. Smith has overlooked their 
meaning. He says {Encyclopaedia Britannica, xiii. 641) : "From 
the tower of furnaces or ovens the ' broad wall ' ran to the point where 
in the Persian time the governor of the Syrian provinces had his 
throne. The throne would stand in an open place by a gateway, 
and comparison of Neh. iii. 7 with xii. 39 shows that the gate must 
have been that of Ephraim, i.e. the gate of the main road leading to 
the north, which then as now must almost of necessity have followed 
the upper course of the Tyropoeon." Schick {ZDPV. viii. 269 ; 
xiv. 47) makes the throne of the governor a part of the castle 
remains of which he finds in the ruins unearthed on the site of the 
Russian Church east of the Sepulchre, the Middle Tower of Josephus 
(BJ. v. 7, 4), where he supposes Nehemiah himself to have had his 
residence during his stay at Jerusalem. 52 The looseness of the con- 
struction should have prevented such an interpretation. The words 
are evidently explanatory. The stretch of wall next to the Corner 
Gate, says the author, was repaired by " men of Gibeon and Mispah." 
Now there were in Palestine several places called Mispah, and, there- 
fore, nothing could be more natural than that the author should 
indicate to which of these places he referred. This he could best do 
by connecting the name with a fact with which his readers would all 
be familiar, namely, that, after the destruction of Jerusalem by the 
Babylonians, the governor had his residence at Mispah. See Jer. 
40 6 . The word rendered " throne," therefore, should be construed 
as an appositive of the proper name, and the whole rendered " the 
seat of the governor beyond the River," i.e. on the west side of the 
Euphrates. Cf. Ryle. 53 

It was only about four hundred cubits from the Corner Gate to the 

52 It is impossible in this connection to give to Schick's ingenious theory the 
attention it deserves, but the subject ought not to be dismissed without a state- 
ment of some of the objections that suggest themselves. In the first place, one 
cannot but notice the surprising disparity between the size of his supposed castle 
and the amount of the materials from which he has constructed it. Secondly, he 
himself uses the same materials in his reconstruction of the buildings erected by 
Constantine about the Holy Sepulchre, and even the largest stones show signs 
of having formed a part of a comparatively late structure. Note the holes for the 
pegs that once supported the marble slabs with which they were faced. Finally, 
since, as has been shown, there are no reliable traces of the second wall between 
the Grand New Hotel and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, it is hardly safe to 
conclude, without further excavations, that these isolated ruins were a part of it. 

53 Meyer (EJ. 108) holds the curious theory that Gibeon and Mispah at this 
time belonged, not to Nehemiah's pashalik, but to the province of Syria. 





Broad Wall ; yet the wall between these two points is divided into 
three sections (vs. 7s9# ), doubtless because, according to the author, 
it had again suffered more seriously than any other part of the 

From the Broad Wall it was a long distance to the Ovens' Tower 
at the southwest corner of the city. Hence it is not surprising that 
the work to be done here should be distributed among four persons 
or parties (vs. 9-11 ). On the other hand, because there was but a short 
stretch between this tower and the Ravine Gate, the whole of it is 
given to one man and his daughters (v. 12 ). 

Thus far, although there has been considerable disparity in the 
allotments, it has not occurred to the author to mention the length 
of the portion of the wall repaired by any of the persons or parties 
named. Now, however, on giving a single community credit for 
restoring not only the Ravine Gate but the wall between it and the 
Dung Gate, he gives the distance between the two points — doubt- 
less in round numbers — a thousand cubits (v. 13 ). 

The same person is said to have repaired the Fountain Gate and 
that part of the wall between it and the Dung Gate (v. 15 ) which at 
the same time formed the dam at the lower end of the Pool of the 
Conduit, the Lower Pool of Isa. 2 2 9 , and the Birket el-Hamra of the 
present day. The correctness of this identification appears from 
the descriptive phrase " at the King's Garden." The pool may have 
received the name here used because it was the receptacle for the 
water brought from the Virgin's Spring by the earliest aqueduct, 54 
as well as that from the Upper Pool. 

The next section of the wall is located with reference to three land- 
marks (v. 16 ), the first of which is the Tombs of David. These royal 
sepulchres have never been discovered. Most of the authorities 
locate them toward the southern end of the hill on which the 
original city of Jerusalem was situated. Klaiber (ZDPV. iii. 210 
sqq.) thinks they were on the east side, and quotes from the Chroni- 
con Paschale an old tradition which he interprets in this sense. So 
also Schick. Guthe. {ZDPV. v. 330 sq.) seems inclined to place 
them higher up the hill. See also Stade, GVI. ii. 167. Bliss laid 
bare a considerable area of the rock on the west side of the hill, 
south of the line of the tunnel, but found no traces of tombs in his 
excavations {EJ. 230 sq.). Whether he would have been more 

54 This aqueduct ran through a short tunnel, the mouth of which can be seen 
in the picture on page 153. 


successful had he dug to the north of the tunnel, where Clermont- 
Ganneau locates the tombs, cannot for the present be decided. The 
French archaeologist's idea (RA. ii. 254 sqq.) is that the curve in 
the tunnel was made to avoid the tombs. 55 He also holds that they 
are probably of the Phoenician type, consisting of a perpendicular 
shaft with a chamber (or chambers) at the bottom, and that there- 
fore it is useless to look for anything above the ground. 

The author, having said that Nehemiah the son of Azbuk repaired 
the wall as far as a point opposite, i.e. in an east and west line with, 
the Tombs of David, adds " and [or " even "] as far as the Made 
Pool, and as far as the House of the Mighty." These words might, 
perhaps, be interpreted as meaning that the person named, after 
having reached a first point, carried his work on the wall to a second 
and a third, but this is not the natural interpretation. The preposi- 
tion used 56 properly denotes a final limit. Therefore, although the 
word rendered in the English Version " the place over against " (lit. 
"prominence") 57 is not repeated, it is probable that the remaining 
landmarks were opposite the same point as the first one, on one side 
or the other of the wall. Schick (ZDPV. xiv. 54), adopting the first 
interpretation, locates the pool on the east side of the hill, just above 
the tombs. Guthe (ZDPV. v. 334 sq.) prefers to identify it with 
one of the reservoirs that he discovered higher up the hill, either 
M. vii. or M. xix. of his map, preferably the latter. An objection to 
Schick's proposal is that no pool has been discovered in the vicinity 
of the site selected. Guthe's, on the other hand, is rendered improb- 
able by the inferior size of the reservoirs mentioned. 58 Under the 
circumstances one is tempted to favor Birch's view (PEF. 1879, 
1 78) that the pool in question should be identified with that at the 

55 It is doubtful if this theory is a priori the most reasonable that can be imag- 
ined. It is noticeable that the tunnel runs from the spring almost directly west, 
until it reaches a point just within the line along which modern investigators sup- 
pose the wall on the east side of the hill extended ; that from the other end its 
general direction is eastward about as far as possible ; and that between the 
points thus reached it follows a wavy north and south line not far below the 
surface. These facts suggest that the intention of the excavators was, first to 
bring the water within reach by a shaft inside the wall, then to carry it along the 
hill near enough to the surface to be drawn by persons outside the city through 
the shorter shafts that have been discovered, and finally to bring it into el- Wad, 
where it would be available for the inhabitants of the western as well as the 
eastern hill. 56 W. 57 neged. 

68 The dimensions given for M. vii. are: length, 49 ft. 4 J in.; width, 16 ft. 
I in. The only remaining side of the other was 19 ft. 8 in. long. 


mouth of the tunnel, now called the 'Ain Silwan, which was originally 
seventy-five feet long (east to west) and seventy-one feet wide. The 
present pool, it is true, cannot now be seen from the east side of the 
hill, but it would be visible from a wall as high as the one that existed 
in the time of the Chronicler. 

It is not clear what is meant by " the House of the Mighty." 
Schick {ZDPV. xiv. 54 sq.) interprets it as meaning barracks, which 
he places just above the tombs and the pool, under the southern wall 
of his " Jebus." A more attractive suggestion is that of Lewin (SJ. 
312), adopted by Klaiber {ZDPV. iii. 206), that it is the tower 
called the Tower of David in Cant. 4 4 , and described as hung with 
" a thousand bucklers, all the shields of the mighty.' , Yet see below. 

There follow (vs. 17s<? ) three allotments, without a hint with refer- 
ence to their limits, then (v. 19 ) a fourth which, according to the 
English Version, was " over against the going up of the armory at 
the turning of the wall." The text is undoubtedly corrupt. The 
word rendered "turning" 59 is supported by the following verse, from 
which it may also be inferred that it here represents the limit of the 
portion of the wall repaired by Ezer. Hence, it must either be 
treated as an accusative or the preposition meaning "as far as" 60 
must be inserted before it. Next, it is natural to expect to find 
among the preceding words mention of a terminus a quo, or a point 
past which the wall ran to reach the " turning." In the former case, 
however, the same point should appear in v. 18 . The absence of any 
such limit from this verse makes it necessary to adopt the other alter- 
native and render the prepositional phrase, not "over against," but 
"past." Past what? The two following words can hardly mean 
what they are usually made to mean, "the ascent of the armory." 
The latter is repeatedly found in the sense of " arms," but never in 
that of "armory." It would be better, therefore, by the insertion of 
a single letter to change the word rendered " ascent " into the one 
for " chamber," and translate the whole " past the armor chamber to 
the corner." 61 It is possible, however, that the text should receive 
more radical emendation. See the Greek Version. In any case, 
there may be here a reference to the Tower of David already men- 
tioned. The tower, or chamber, was at, or near, a corner, probably 
a corner in the wall, some distance up the hill. Guthe found two 
such corners, the first of which he connects {ZDPV. v. 298) with 
the one here mentioned. It would be at about the right distance 

59 mikso\ 60 w. 61 vxpm iv ptwn rrbv nm 

The Minaret at 'Ain Silwan, 

from the line of the ancient wall. 


from the supposed site of the Tombs of David. It was at the edge 
of a depression which the earliest wall seems to have avoided alto- 
gether, or to have crossed at a point farther west, where it was shal- 
lower. 62 Here, as already intimated, since it is the point at which 
one of the paths from the Virgin's Spring still reaches the top of the 
hill, would be a natural location for one of the early gates. 

In v. 20 , according to Guthe, the word rendered " earnestly " is a 
case of dittography, and therefore to be expunged. The Vulgate has 
in monte, which would require but a slight change in a single letter 
of the text. 08 It might then be rendered in English, "up the hill," 
which could be interpreted as meaning that the new wall took a more 
direct course than the old one. 

It seems necessary to suppose that the wall did take such a course. 
Otherwise there would not have been six allotments between the cor- 
ner just mentioned and the next one (v. 24 ) . The latter must have 
been as far northward as the great tower discovered by Warren. This 
tower was eighty feet in length. On either side of it was a smaller 
one. If, now, the corner here meant is the one where the small 
tower south of the great projection broke the line of the wall, it will 
not be difficult to understand the following verses and their repeated 
references to " the projecting tower." The last words of the verse 
now under consideration, "and unto the corner," are probably a 
gloss added by some one who erroneously identified the "turning" 
here meant with the towering southeast corner of the temple 

The interpretation of v. 26 has already been discussed in connection 
with the location of the Water Gate as the final point in the route of 
the second procession. See 12 37 . The explanation there given is 
equally applicable to vs. 2527 . Here are three stretches of the new 
wall, all of which are described as being partly or wholly "over 
against " the projecting tower. This can hardly be understood except 
on the supposition that, as already suggested, this tower was left out- 
side when Nehemiah restored the defences of the city. 64 

In v. 25 the tower is described as projecting " from the upper house 

62 Guthe (ZDPV. v. 327) raises the question whether the Chronicler, in 
2 Chr. 33 14 , where he describes the wall built by Manasseh as " west of Gihon in 
the valley," can be understood as referring to this branch of the Kidron. The 
answer must be negative. 

63 mm for mm. 

64 G. A. Smith (EB., art. * Jerusalem,' §24) finds in vs. 25-27 two projecting 





of the king," i.e. the residence of the kings after Solomon. Further, 
it, or the royal palace, is said to be " by the court of the prison." 
These descriptive phrases are not repeated in either of the following 
verses. If they are genuine, the Chronicler must be understood as 
locating the palace, not where it is usually located, at the southern 
end of the temple area, but several hundred feet farther southward. 
This, however, seems to be in harmony with what follows. 65 

The first words of v. 26 , " Now the Nethinim dwelt in Ophel," as has 
been shown, are foreign to the connection, and, therefore, must be 
pronounced a gloss. They are of value, however, as indicating where 
the one who inserted them located Ophel, namely, south of the 
temple enclosure and west of the projecting tower. Where, then, 
was " the wall of Ophel," the limit of that portion of the wall 
repaired by the Tekoites? The answer to this question is not far 
to seek. The next section of the wall is allotted to the priests (v. 28 ). 
From this fact it might be inferred that it began at the southeast 
corner of the temple area. The mention of the Horse Gate, which, 
according to Jer. 31 40 , was at this corner, confirms this inference. 
"The wall of Ophel," therefore, must have run east and west across 

65 Wellhausen (CH. 266 sg.) holds that the royal palace immediately adjoined 
the temple; that, in fact, it was in the outer court of the same enclosure as the 
sanctuary. This he infers from 1 Kgs. 6 sq., where the account of the erection 
of the temple is interrupted (7 1-12 ) by a description of Solomon's palace. It is 
very doubtful, however, if this is a fair interpretation of the passage. In the first 
place, " the other court " of 7 8 can hardly be the same as " the great court " of 
v. 12 . Secondly, this latter, which, to be sure, was enclosed in the same way as 
the inner court of the temple, appears to be the outer court of the palace as dis- 
tinguished from the sanctuary. If one should insist, as Wellhausen does, that 
the position of 7 1-12 favors his opinion, there is the objection that in the Greek 
Version these verses come at the end, instead of the beginning, of the chapter. 
Kittel explains their position by supposing that 7 13s <ra'- is a supplementary descrip- 
tion of the temple by a later hand than that of chapter 6. Wellhausen also cites 
2 Kgs. 11, but he thinks most convincing (ganz gewiss) Ezek. 43 7sQr -, where the 
kings of Judah are represented as defiling the name of Yahweh by their corpses, 
and by placing their threshold by that of their God, with only a wall between 
them. This is interpreted as meaning that even the sepulchres of the kings were 
within the temple area. The passage, however, should be interpreted in the 
light of Ezekiel's scheme for the restoration, of which it is a part. He describes 
the temple as standing in a court nearly a mile square (42 19s ?), i.e. larger than 
the entire site of ancient Jerusalem, the same being situated in the middle of a 
tract assigned to the priests which was nearly fifty miles long and twenty wide, 
and thus protected from defilement by anything common or unclean. To the 
author of such a scheme, of course, a king, dead or alive, within half a mile of 
the house of God would be intolerable. See Jer. 3i 39s ?-. 


the hill north of ancient Jerusalem, at first protecting it on its weakest 
side, and afterward serving the less important purpose of separating 
it from the temple and its precincts. See Ezek. 43 s . 

The wall repaired went "over the Horse Gate." This gate, there- 
fore, must have been an entrance to substructions similar to those on 
which the southern end of the present platform rests, which the 
Chronicler supposes to have been left undisturbed when the city was 
taken by the Babylonians. See Jer. 31 40 . 

The phrase " over the Horse Gate " has further significance. It 
means that from this point onward the wall repaired under Nehemiah 
was not the outer wall, a remnant of which was uncovered by Warren 
{PEF. 1869 ; App. 90) in front of the present Golden Gate, but, as 
might have been expected, the inner one bounding on the east the 
temple area. This interpretation is admitted by Schick (ZDPV. 
xiv. 57), who, however, supposes that vs. 24 - 27 - 30 **- refer to a second 
outer wall ; which is altogether unlikely in view of the Chronicler's 
evident appreciation of the situation. 

In v. 28 "the priests" are probably the same who are men- 
tioned by name in the following verses. 06 Shemaiah is described as 
" keeper of the East Gate." Perhaps the author intended to imply 
that he conducted the repairs on this entrance, which must have 
been farther south than the Golden Gate of the present day. The 
reference to the " chamber " of Meshullam (v. 30 ) indicates that the 
inference drawn from the phrase " over the Horse Gate " is correct, 
and that the east wall of the city was here the east wall of the 
temple enclosure. The priests, then, or some of them, lived within 
the sacred precincts, either in the chambers connected with the 
temple or in separate houses, and Malkijah, who, according to the 
English version (v. 31 ) was "the goldsmith's son" (AV.) or "one of 
the goldsmiths" (RV.), probably belonged to the same order. He 
may, however, have been one of the Nethinim, who also had a dwelling 
here. 67 The " merchants " of this verse are doubtless persons who 
were authorized to sell within the enclosure animals and other neces- 
sities to worshippers. See Mark n 15 . It is not probable that they 
occupied the same quarters as the Nethinim. Hence it is better to 
translate the latter half of the verse "and the traders [repaired] 68 

66 The word 'ahardu, which usually has the sense of " next," at the beginning 
of v. 29 might therefore here be rendered "first." 

67 The text is evidently corrupt, but thus far no plausible emendation has been 
suggested. For the latest, see Guthe, SBOT. 

68 For other cases of the omission of the verb, see v. 25 . 


opposite the Watch Gate and as far as the Corner Chamber," thus at 
the same time giving this important class a share in providing for the 
defence of the city and the temple from which they lived. The 
Watch Gate seems to have been one that gave entrance from the less 
sacred part of the enclosure, where the traders did business, to the 
sanctuary proper. See also Ezek. 43 21 . The Corner Chamber was 
in the tower at the northwest corner of the temple area. The last 
portion of the wall, that between the Corner Chamber and the Sheep 
Gate, also, is properly allotted to the traders, in this case assisted by 
the goldsmiths or, perhaps, the money-changers. 


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( Continued on page J ^3-) 

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