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The Third Wall of Jerusalem and Some Exca- 
vations on its Supposed Line 



Director of the American School in Palestine^ 1903-04 

THE city of Jerusalem lies on a V-shaped plateau between 
the deep, rocky gorges of the Kidron and the Hinnom. 
By these gorges it is cut off from the surrounding ridges 
on the east, south, and west. Only toward the north is 
there open country, for here the plateau joins on to the 
broad table-land of central Judaea. Toward this quarter, 
accordingly, Jerusalem has expanded, and the successive 
enlargements have necessitated the building of new walls. 
These have served not merely to enclose the suburbs, but 
also to strengthen the city on its weakest side. On the 
sides toward the valleys a single rampart was suf5Eicient to 
withstand the most powerful enemy. According to Josephus 
(^Ant. xiv. 4^; B, J. i. 7^), Pompey made a reconnaissance 
and came to the conclusion that from these quarters assault 
was impossible. According to j5. J", v. 6^, Titus made a simi- 
lar examination and came to the same conclusion. All the 
other besiegers of Jerusalem have held the same opinion, 
and the result has been that every attack known to history 
has been made from the north. Here the city has no natural 
defence, and here also it is possible to operate large bodies 
of troops. On this side, accordingly, it was necessary that 
Jerusalem should have several lines of fortification. As 
early, apparently, as the reign of Manasseh a second wall was 
erected on the north (2 Chr. 33^*), and a third wall was 
begun by Agrippa about 40 a.d. (B, J", v. 4^) and was hastily 
finished by the Jews at the time of the revolt (jB. J", ii. 11^ 








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V. 4^). Thus arose the condition of things described by 
Josephus in B. J. v. 4^ : " The city had been fortified with 
three walls, except in those parts where it was encompassed 
with impassable ravines, for there it had only one enclosing 

In describing the course of the first, or innermost, of these 
walls, Josephus starts with the tower called Hippicus and 
goes eastward toward the Temple. Then he returns to 
Hippicus and goes southward around the west hill, eastward 
toward Siloam, and northward to the east wall of the Temple 
(jB. J". V. 42). This shows that Hippicus must have stood at 
the northwest corner of the inner city. The same conclusion 
is necessitated by the description of the third wall, which is 
said to have also started at Hippicus and to have run thence 
around the northern suburbs to the northeast corner of the 
Temple, where it again joined the first wall. Hippicus is 
further described (J?. J. v. 4^) as lying over against (avTi- 
/cpx^} the Tower of Psephinus, which stood at the northwest 
corner of the third wall, and as situated alongside of two 
other great towers called Phasaelus and Mariamme. The 
three towers (in the order, Hippicus, Phasaelus, Mariamme) 
stood, according to B. J. v. 4*, on high ground in the north- 
ern line of the first wall north of the palace of Herod. Hip- 
picus, according to B. J. v. 4^ was twenty-five cubits square, 
and Mariamme twenty cubits square. All were built of 
blocks of white stone twenty cubits long, ten cubits broad, 
and five cubits high. At the time when Titus destroyed the 
walls, according to B. J. vii. 1^ these three towers were left 

These passages lead us to look for Hippicus at a point 
near the Jaffa Gate in the west wall of the present city. 
Here two valleys, one running south, the other running east, 
met ; and here, therefore, was the natural northwest corner 
of the ancient city. At this point stands the citadel of 
modern Jerusalem. In its northern wall is a massive tower, 
now popularly known as the Tower of David, whose lower 
courses contain immense blocks of stone, like those described 
by Josephus and with characteristic Jewish dressing. There 


is no room for doubt that this is Phasaelus, and that Hippicus 
stood near the modern tower a little farther west. Here we 
have a sure starting-point for determining the course of the 
first wall. From Hippicus, according to Josephus, it ran 
eastward past the Xystus and the Council-house to the west 
cloister of the Temple. It must, therefore, have followed 
the edge of the hill above the west arm of the Tyropoeon 
until this joined the north arm, and then have crossed the 
valley straight to the Temple. 

The second wall is described by Josephus (jB. J", v. 4^) as 
beginning at the Gate Genath in the first wall, as encircling 
(^fcvfcXov/iepov^ only the northern part of the city, and as 
ending at the Tower of Antonia at the northwest angle of 
the Temple. The third wall is described in the same pas- 
sage as beginning at the Tower Hippicus, running thence to 
the Tower Psephinus, thence past the monument of Helena, 
Queen of Adiabene, through the Royal Caverns, past the 
Fuller's Monument, to the northeast angle of the Temple, 
From these accounts the course of these two walls cannot 
be determined, and we are forced to turn to archaeology for 

Along the line of the present north wall numerous ancient 
remains have been discovered. In laying foundations for 
the Grand New Hotel in 1885 a wall of huge Jewish stones 
was discovered running in a northwesterly direction from 
the so-called Tower of David. This wall serves now as a 
foundation for the east wall of the hotel, and unfortunately 
is no longer visible. Following the street east of the hotel, 
parallel to the present city wall, we reach in five minutes 
the School of the Latin Patriarchate in the northwest corner 
of the city. Here formerly lay the extensive ruins known 
as Qal'at Jalud, or Goliath's Castle. Most of these have 
been removed to make room for the school, but in the cellar 
part of a wall of massive Jewish stones, similar to those in 
the Tower of David and under the Grand New Hotel, has 
been left in place. It is hard to believe that this is not a 
continuation of the piece of wall found under the Grand 
New Hotel. Along the entire course of the present north 


wall as far as the Damascus Gate traces of the same old wall 
have been discovered. At the Damascus Gate ancient drafted 
stones still appear above ground, and the top of the ancient 
gate is still seen built into the foundations of the modern 
gate. There is good archaeological evidence, accordingly, 
that an old Jewish wall followed substantially the course of 
the present city wall from the Jaffa Gate on the west to the 
Damascus Gate on the north. Which wall then was this ? 
Was it the second described by Josephus, or the third ? This 
is one of the fundamental problems of Jerusalem topography, 
and to it no satisfactory answer has yet been given. 

Let us first consider the theory which identifies these re- 
mains with the third wall of Josephus. 

1. In support of this theory, appeal is made to the loca- 
tion of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre inside of this wall. 
According to Matt. 27^2, Mark 152^ John 19i7-2o,4i^ Heb. IS^, 
Christ was crucified and buried outside of the city wall, that 
is, outside of the second wall, since Agrippa's wall had not 
yet been built. If the traditional site of the Sepulchre be 
correct, then the present wall cannot be the second wall, but 
must be the third wall that was erected after the crucifixion. 

Unfortunately, the genuineness of the Sepulchre rests 
upon too slender historical evidence for its location to be 
a decisive argument in the case. There is, doubtless, an 
unbroken chain of tradition back to the time of Constantine's 
founding of the Church, but during the two preceding cen- 
turies evidence fails us. It is easy to assert that Macarius, 
Bishop of Jerusalem, must have had good reason for selecting 
this spot when the order came to search for the true cross, 
but it is impossible to prove this. It is claimed that the first 
Christians must have reverenced the Sepulchre as a sacred 
spot and must have transmitted a knowledge of its location 
to their successors, but of this there is no evidence in the New 
Testament or elsewhere. It is claimed also that the interval 
between the crucifixion and the reign of Constantine is so 
short that memory of the location of Golgotha could easily 
have been preserved, but when one remembers the vicissi- 
tudes that attended the flight of the Christians, the siege of 

paton: the third wall of Jerusalem 201 

the city, its destruction by Titus, and all the changes that 
were effected by later emperors, one questions whether it 
is likely that knowledge of the spot survived. The false 
traditions in regard to Zion, City of David, Gihon, and most 
other localities of ancient Jerusalem show rather that the 
thread of authentic tradition was broken at the time of the 
fall of the city, and that all subsequent identifications were 
worthless guesses. Eusebius nowhere tells us that Macarius 
knew a tradition in regard to the location of Golgotha ; in 
fact, he expressly informs us that the tomb of Christ was 
found "contrary to expectation"; and later historians assert 
that the discovery of the spot was miraculous. When one 
considers the ease with which holy places have been identi- 
fied, and are still identified, by interested ecclesiastics, one is 
not sure that Macarius must have had the best of historical 
evidence before he gratified the emperor by informing him 
that the true cross and the Holy Sepulchre had been dis- 
covered. The location of the third wall cannot be deter- 
mined, therefore, by an appeal to the position of Constantine's 
Church. This question must be decided on its own merits 
without regard to the bearing of the answer for or against 
the genuineness of the Holy Sepulchre. 

2. It is claimed that traces of a second wall are found 
between the first wall and the present wall, and that, there- 
fore, the present wall must correspond with the third wall. 
The ruins of the Muristan south of the Sepulchre were 
formerly supposed to be partly remains of a city wall, but 
the clearing of this spot incidental to the building of the 
new German Church has disproved this hypothesis. Sepp 
thought that he had found a city gate east of the Sepulchre, 
but further excavation has shown that this is Byzantine 
work and is probably part of Constantine's erections. The 
most elaborate attempt to trace a second wall inside of the 
Sepulchre is that of Schick in the proceedings of the Russian 
Palestinian Society for 1884, and subsequently in the Zeit- 
schrift des deutschen Paldstina- Vereins^ 1885, part 4. Schick 
notices a line of cisterns south and east of the Church of the 
Holy Sepulchre which leads him to conjecture that a city 


moat once ran here. East of the Sepulchre he finds some 
ancient stones which he supposes belonged to a city wall. 
On the strength of these discoveries he lays down the follow- 
ing line for the second wall. It began with the ancient 
drafted blocks under the Grand New Hotel and ran a short 
distance northwest. Then it turned northeast and followed 
the street known as Harat el-Ma wazine, which is the short 
cut from the Hotel to the Church of the Sepulchre. Thence 
it ran due east a thousand feet south of the Church of the 
Sepulchre, turned suddenly at a right angle, and ran first 
north and then east to the northwest corner of the Temple. 

This view has found wide acceptance, and this course for 
the second wall has been put down as probable on most of 
the recent maps of Jerusalem, for instance, those of Ben- 
zinger in Baedeker's Palestine^ Buhl in his Greographie des 
alien Paldstina^ Guthe in Hauck's Realencyclopddie and in 
the Kurzes Bihelworterhuch^ Meyer in the Jewish Encyclope- 
dia^ George Adam Smith in the Encyclopcedia Bihlica ; never- 
theless, it is doubtful whether any of the remains that Schick 
discovered are really parts of a city wall. The bit of masonry 
southwest of the Church of the Sepulchre has no resemblance 
to the great wall under the Grand New Hotel. Cisterns 
and cellars could not be dug within the sacred precincts of 
the Holy Sepulchre, but would be dug as near to them as 
possible. Thus they would come in course of time to form 
an almost unbroken chain around the Church and its adja- 
cent chapels. Their presence, therefore, is no evidence of 
an original moat at this point. The remains east of the 
Church consist of massive drafted stones similar to those 
under the Grand New Hotel, but the portal which they 
enclose suggests that they belong to a public building rather 
than to a city wall. The scarps discovered east of the Church 
of the Sepulchre seem to be natural rock terraces. They bear 
no resemblance to the splendid artificial cuttings at the south- 
west corner of the city. An impartial investigation of these 
remains leads one to the conclusion reached by Sir Charles 
Wilson {PEF, Quarterly Statement, 1903, p. 247) : " From 
an archseological point of view . . . there is no sufficient 


proof that the masses of masonry which are supposed to 
have formed part of the [second] wall ever belonged to 
it." Sir Charles is favorable on the whole to the genuine- 
ness of the Holy Sepulchre, so that this cannot be regarded 
as the testimony of a prejudiced witness. 

3. In support of the theory that the third wall is to be 
identified with the present wall it is urged that the ruins of 
Qal'at Jalud near the northwest corner of the modern city 
correspond with the Tower of Psephinus, which, according to 
Josephus, B. J. V. 4^, stood at the northwest corner of the 
third wall ; and that the caverns known as Jeremiah's 
Grotto and the Cotton Grotto east of the Damascus Gate 
correspond with the Royal Caverns through which Josephus 
says the third wall passed before reaching the Temple. There 
is nothing, however, about the ruins of Qal'at Jalud that iden- 
tifies them specifically with the Tower of Psephinus. Ac- 
cording to B» J. V. 4^ the second wall had forty towers, and 
these ruins may belong to one of these towers quite as well 
as to Psephinus. The name Royal Caverns is far too vague 
to allow any certain identification with the quarries known 
as Jeremiah's Grotto and the Cotton Grotto. 

These are the main arguments that are adduced to prove 
that the present north wall corresponds with the third wall. 
None of them can be regarded as conclusive. Let us now look 
at some considerations that are opposed to this identification : 

1. The second wall as traced by Schick follows an incon- 
ceivably bad course. A glance at the contour map shows 
that it is on low ground all the way, while it might have 
stood on high ground, if it had been moved a few hundred 
feet to the north. 

2. The zigzag course pursued by this wall is also very 
unlikely. It makes three rectangular bends with no appar- 
ent reason except to keep inside of the Church of the Sepul- 
chre, although by going outside of the Sepulchre it might 
have shortened the distance and have occupied higher ground. 
Josephus describes this wall as " circling about," KvicKoiyuevov, 
It is doubtful whether such a term could be applied to the 
wall as laid down by Schick. 


3. If the second wall had had the singular bend inward 
at the Church of the Sepulchre which Schick assumes, 
Josephus would have mentioned this fact and have named 
Golgotha as the place where the deflection from the natural 
course occurred. 

4. Josephus states (J5. J", v. 7^) that after the capture of 
the third or outer wall " Titus moved his camp so as to be 
within at the place called the Camp of the Assyrians, occupy- 
ing all the intervening space as far as the Kidron, but keep- 
ing a sufficient distance away from the second wall so as to 
be out of range of missiles." This statement indicates that 
there was space enough between the third wall and the 
second for Titus's army to camp inside of the third and still 
be out of reach of the stones and darts that the Jews could 
hurl from their military engines on the second wall. No 
such space exists between the present wall and Schick's 
assumed second wall. The greatest distance between these 
two walls is not more than 1000 feet and at many points 
they are not more than 500 feet apart. This argument bears 
with equal force against all other theories which locate the 
second wall inside of the Church of the Sepulchre. They 
do not leave enough room between the second and the third 
wall to allow for the statements of Josephus. 

5. In B, J, V. 4^ Josephus states that the circumference 
of the city was 33 stadia. If the present wall is the third wall, 
the city cannot have measured more than 27 stadia, even if all 
the bends and projections of the towers are counted in. 

6. The immense population that, according to Josephus, 
found shelter in the city at the time of the Passover points 
to a larger area than that included by the present north 
wall. The calculation of Cestius from the number of pas- 
chal lambs (J?. J, vi. 9^) would give a population not far 
from 3,000,000 at the time of the feast. According to B, J, 
vi. 9^ 1,100,000 perished at the time of Titus's siege. 

7. Ant, XX. 4^ states that the outer wall was three stadia 
distant from the monument of Queen Helena. This monu- 
ment is identified with a high degree of probability as the 
so-called Tombs of the Kings near the present residence of 


the Anglican Bishop, but they are at least four stadia from 
the present city wall. 

8. According to B, J. ii. 19* and v. 2^ Titus pitched his 
camp on Scopus, seven stadia distant from the city. Scopus 
is doubtless the high plateau north of Wady-ej-J6z, and it is 
considerably more than seven stadia from the present north 
wall. Those who identify the third wall with the present 
north wall are compelled to assert that in all these passages 
Josephus exaggerates the size of the city, but no reason for 
exaggeration appears, and the consistency of his statements 
with one another indicates rather that he has told the truth. 
These considerations seem to show that the third wall can- 
not be identified with the present wall. 

This brings us to a consideration of the second possible 
theory, namely, that the present wall is the second wall, and 
that the third wall lay considerably further toward the north. 

In 1838 Robinson found numerous traces of this wall still 
extant, and he was able to plot its course from the north- 
west corner of the city to the Nablus road (^Biblical Researches 
in Pale8tine\ i. 465 ff.). He describes ancient stones similar 
to those in the Tower of David and rock-hewn foundations 
of towers. Old residents of Jerusalem assure me that they 
remember a time when great drafted stones of this wall were 
still to be seen in the open country north of the city, and 
their descriptions of the size and the dressing of these stones 
correspond with the account given by Robinson.^ The growth 
of the modern city has, however, obliterated all traces of this 
wall. For a distance of a third of a mile from the present 
north wall the land has been thickly covered with houses, 
and ancient stones have been broken up and used as building 
material. The Russians have taken care that no vestiges 
remain of the wall that Robinson was able to trace on their 
extensive grounds northwest of the city. Others have been 
equally active in destroying evidence of it on the line run- 
ning northeast from the Russian grounds. Things have now 
gone so far that people are able to assert that there never 

1 See also S. Merrill, **A Section of Agrippa's Wall," PEF^ Quarterly 
Statement, 1903, p. 158 f. 


were any traces of a wall outside of the present wall, and 
that Robinson was mistaken when he thought he saw them. 
I am willing to admit that Robinson could make mistakes, 
but I am sure that he knew a Jewish stone when he saw it, 
and that the dozen or more people who assure me that they 
have seen such stones cannot all be mistaken. It is easier 
to explain the disappearance of these stones with their unwel- 
come testimony against the genuineness of the Holy Sepul- 
chre than it is to explain how so many people could have 
been victims of optical hallucination. 

In spite of the systematic work of destruction, traces of 
this wall still occasionally turn up. When the foundations 
were dug for the house of Baron Ustinow at the corner of 
the cross-road leading from the Nablus road to the Jaffa 
road, one or two ancient stones were found. In the land 
back of Mr. Hanauer's house others have been seen when 
cisterns were dug. Unfortunately, these have all been 
covered up again. One of the first duties of the Jerusalem 
archaeologist, it seems to me, is to search for remains of this 
wall and to establish its existence or non-existence before it 
is too late to gather evidence. 

During my nine months' residence in Jerusalem I explored 
many times along the line laid down by Robinson. I found 
several places where the surface suggested that stones might 
be buried, but I could get no permission to dig in these spots. 
The only place where remains were visible that might have 
belonged to the third wall was at a point north of St. Ste- 
phen's Church and east of the Nablus road. Here, in a field 
back of some houses occupied by Sephardim Jews, is an old 
cistern, thirty feet long, twenty feet broad, and fifteen feet 
deep. The east, west, and south sides of this are built of 
small broken stones, but on the north side four huge stones 
fill the entire length of the top of the cistern. These average 
seven feet in length by five feet in height. They have a broad 
marginal draft, and resemble closely the great stones at the 
Wailing Place. It cannot be doubted that they are of Jewish 
workmanship. They are in the same east and west line with 
the remains that Robinson discovered west of the Nablus road. 

Fig. 1 

Fig. 2 
Dressed Rock-Face on North Side of Cistern 


The conjecture is plausible that they are vestiges of the lost 
third wall. These stones were not seen by Robinson, but 
they were investigated by Wilson, and are described by him 
in the Ordnance Survey of Jerusalem^ 1865, p. 72. Wilson 
dug a pit in front of one of the stones in the corner of the 
cistern to see how far down it extended, and he also cut a 
trench west of the stones to see if he could discover another 
portion of the wall ; but his examination was too superficial 
to establish anything in regard to the real character of the 
stones. As he himself remarks, " After ascertaining its [the 
pool's] character it was not considered advisable to incur 
further expense by continuing the shaft to the bottom." 

About 1875 Schick made another examination which ap- 
parently he did not report at the time, but in the Quarterly 
Statement for 1895, p. 30, he alludes to this investigation. At 
the time of this report he was convinced that the second 
wall ran inside of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, so that 
he was not disposed to regard favorably any evidences for a 
third wall outside of the present city wall. He remarks as 
follows : " Immediately westward [of the stones] I found 
the rock, and in it rock-hewn tombs ; also in searching the 
north side of the wall I soon came to the rock, and ascer- 
tained that the thickness of the wall is fourteen feet. I in- 
tended to dig also on the east, but then the proprietor of the 
ground hindered me. It seems that there is no continua- 
tion eastward." How did he know this, if he did not dig? 
" Thinking the matter over and over again, I came to the 
conclusion that it was not a wall in the general meaning, but 
simply a tomb monument, and that this * pool,' if we may 
call it so, is simply the court sunk into the ground, like that 
at the 'Tombs of the Kings,' only much smaller. In the 
immediate neighborhood there are other similar tanks, as 
may be seen on the plan. Once a stair went down into them, 
and in one of the side walls was the small entrance into the 
tombs. Afterward, in the Mohammedan time, these sunken 
courts were converted into pools for water, the sides being 
covered with masonry of small stones and then cemented. 
... I think further, that if the pool in which trees are 


now standing, which proves that there is a good layer of 
earth, were cleared out, and the cement masonry taken away, 
the entrance to rock-cut tombs would appear under this wall 
and north of it, as there I found the rock near the surface 
of the ground. Jews are now residing in this neighborhood, 
and cast their rubbish into this pool, so that in a few years 
it will be filled up and disappear. I mention this in the 
hope that excavations may be made. The proprietors would 
probably give permission." 

Some time after this Schick was commissioned by the 
Exploration Fund to clear out this cistern. He did so, 
throwing all the rubbish on top of the large stones, thus 
greatly interfering with the investigation of their true char- 
acter. He discovered no tomb-entrances such as he pre- 
dicted would appear. I understand that he wrote to the 
officers of the Fund that nothing of interest was to be found 
here. No public report that I have been able to find ever 
appeared, and the unsubstantiated tomb-theory remained 
Schick's last word on the subject. 

I could not help feeling that these ancient stones deserved 
a more careful investigation than they had yet received and, 
accordingly, I made inquiries in regard to the ownership of 
the land in which they stood. I found that there was a 
large number of part owners, but that these were represented 
by two wakils or "trustees," one of whom was a British 
resident, the other an educated Moslem. These two granted 
permission to dig, on condition that I should leave every- 
thing as I had found it and make good any damage done to 
the grain that was standing on the land. I secured four 
men from Silwan who had worked under Dr. Frederick Bliss 
in excavating the south wall of the city, and we began dig- 
ging. Dr. Spoer, the Fellow of the American School, and 
I took turns in superintending, for we found that even 
Dr. Bliss's training was not enough to make the men work 
when they were not watched. It seemed desirable to ascer- 
tain first how thick the wall was and what lay on its north 
side. Wilson says that he found nothing but oil-cisterns 
north of it. Schick says that he found the north face at a 


distance of fourteen feet from the exposed south face. We 
started at the northeast corner and ran a trench northward 
through the immense heap of earth that Schick had taken 
out of the cistern. We found an uneven rock surface rising 
toward the north and divided up by cemented partitions into 
sections three or four feet square rising one above another 
and opening into one another. These were evidently de- 
signed to catch mud in the water flowing off the surface and 
prevent its coming into the cistern. I could see no traces 
of the oil-tanks that Wilson thought he recognized, unless he 
regarded this filtering system as a series of oil receptacles. In 
spite of Schick's assertion that the " thickness of the wall is 
fourteen feet," I found no trace of a north face opposite to the 
one exposed in the tank. A tunnel pushed northward as far 
as we dared to go showed no end to the rock surface. It thus 
became evident that we were not dealing with hewn stones 
but merely with a face of native rock that had been dressed 
to simulate stones. In order to make sure whether this were 
the case, I ran anothe-r trench westward along the top of the 
wall to the point where the first stone ended, and there found 
that the separation between the stones extended only four 
inches from the south face, and that beyond that depth the 
two stones formed one continuous mass of rock. This fact 
was not discovered either by Wilson or Schick, and I confess 
that it was a great surprise to me. The stones have all the 
appearance of the great stones in the enclosing wall of the 
Haram. In most places the space between them is so small 
that a knife's blade cannot be inserted, in other places the 
blade may be thrust in up to the handle. Who would have 
supposed that the drafting and the lines between the stones 
were all a fraud ? I had the workmen pull out the grass 
from the joints and examine them carefully, and it then 
appeared that the joints were drilled with some narrow 
instrument to a depth of about four inches. On these stones 
Conder remarks in the article "Jerusalem" in Hastings's 
Dictionary of the Bible, vol. ii. p. 596, " There are some fine 
stones in the side of a tank farther north, which may have 
belonged to the third wall, but they are not apparently in 


«i^ii." In the light of the investigation just described this 
view is impossible. These supposed stones are native rock, 
and are therefore very much in situ. 

The next question to be investigated was whether this 
rock cutting extended farther east and west than the portion 
exposed on the side of the cistern. Both Wilson and Schick 
had dug westward and had found no continuation. I con- 
tented myself, therefore, with merely exposing the norths 
west corner of the cistern. Here I found that the wall 
descended in two steps to level rock, and that there was 
no evidence of its having continued farther westward. I 
also dug at the northeast corner of the cistern and found the 
wall descending again in two steps to level rock. We ran 
a trench some distance and cut two cross trenches in hope 
of picking up the wall again, but without results. Just at 
this time I fell victim to a serious eye malady, and the phy- 
sician forbade my working longer in the bright sunlight, so 
that I was obliged to conclude my investigations more hastily 
than I wished. I should like to see a more thorough inves- 
tigation of the ground east of the wall. It is open field 
where digging can easily be done, and it seems to me very 
likely that other cuttings similar to that seen in the face of 
the cistern would be found. 

And now, in conclusion, what is one to think of the char- 
acter of these remains ? Schick's theory that they formed 
part of a sunken rock-cut tomb is disproved by closer exami- 
nation. The cistern is not cut out of solid rock, like the 
antechamber of a tomb, but is rock-cut only on the north 
side, and on the other sides is built up with Arab masonry 
of small stones. There are no tomb-chambers opening off 
any of the sides. Schick made diligent search for them 
all around the cistern in order to prove his hypothesis, but 
failed to find any. Conder's theory, that these stones have 
been moved from some other locality to use them in build- 
ing one of the walls of the cistern, is disproved by the fact 
that they are native rock. The only remaining theory is, 
that they served as foundations for some sort of building. 
In laying a wall a rocky ledge was encountered on the 


selected line, and instead of cutting this away, its face was 
dressed to imitate the masonry of the wall and its ends were 
cut into steps so as to allow for stones to be laid upon it. 
Much work of this sort is to be seen around Jerusalem. 
Both rock scarps and ancient stones have had their faces 
redressed to conform to later masonry. When the wall 
was destroyed, the portable stones were carried off to use as 
building material, but the rock ledge that formed its base 
was not transportable, and therefore has remained in place 
unto this day. 

What sort of a building then was it for which these cut- 
tings served as a foundation ? Their style of dressing points 
to some great edifice of the Jewish period. A public build- 
ing is hardly to be thought of so far away from the centre 
of the city ; and moreover, the condition of the rock surface 
shows that this wall cannot have enclosed any building. 
By far the most natural theory is, that we see here part of 
the foundations of Agrippa's wall. These remains are in 
the same line as the remains that Robinson noted west of the 
Nablus road. They are in the same line with the bit of 
ancient wall that Wilson examined in 1864. The huge size 
of the stones corresponds with Josephus's statements about 
the stones in Agrippa's wall. The only objection to this 
theory is that the face of this rock cutting is turned toward 
the city and not away from it, as we should expect if this 
were a city wall. It is true that scarps usually face out- 
ward and are an important part of the defence of a city, but 
this consideration hardly applies to so small a cutting. If 
the wall were planned to follow a particular course, and it 
happened to run over the brow of a ledge that faced inward 
toward the city, it is not likely that its course would be 
changed on this account. All that would be done would 
be to cut the ledge to correspond with the masonry of the 
wall and use it as a foundation. On the whole, therefore, 
the most likely theory seems to me to be that in these stones 
we have the only remains now visible of the third wall of