About sight: Cardo street

After the end of the six day war of 1967 Jerusalem has come under the control of the Israeli, who started large-scale archaeological excavations at the Jewish Quarter making it possible to see how Cardo Street looked like – the main street of the Old Jerusalem.

Latin meaning of ‘cardo’ is «axis», and as can be seen from a mosaic panel discovered in the Jordanian town of Madaba in 1844, it was the main street stretching from the Damascus Gate to Zion Gate. The Cardo Street appeared in the Jewish Quarter already in the period of Byzantine Empire.

In the Old Jerusalem the full width of the Cardo Street reached 22 meters, with the carriageway of 12 meters. Almost along its whole length the Cardo Street was flanked with columns and porticos. At today Jewish Quarter one can see the restored sections of the Cardo Street with ancient Roman pavement and remains of columns. Most part of the restored Cardo Street was turned into a colorful shopping mall. It is just there you can see one of the ancient shops which was hewn in the rock and survived until our time unchanged.

At the Arab part of Old Jerusalem you can see the excavations of the ancient walls dating back to the time of the Maccabees, that is pre-Roman period. It is believed that the wall, going down for several dozens of meters, belongs to the period of the Kings of Israel, in other words to the time of the First Temple of Solomon.

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