Archaeologists have uncovered a well-preserved city wall in Jerusalem from the 2nd Temple period. It is located on the slope of the western hill, named “Mount Zion” by the Crusaders. The wall was built in the first half of the 2nd century B.C. and continued in use until the Roman destruction of the city in A.D. 70. Christians will appreciate that it was a part of Jerusalem’s defensive network during the time of Jesus and the apostles.
The wall is constructed without mortar, which was also true for later Herodian construction in the city. The newly discovered wall is preserved to a height of around 10 feet.
The excavators also found a wall from the Byzantine period (A.D. 4th – 7th centuries) running a parallel course. Yehiel Zelinger, director of the excavation, hopes that further digging will uncover the wall from the 1st Temple period.
Here is a satellite view of Jerusalem. The excavation is marked with a yellow rectangle. You obviously can’t see much from this view, but it shows where the wall is in relation to ancient city. The Temple Mount with the Dome of the Rock is in the upper right quadrant. The City of David is directly below it in the lower right quadrant. You can see the yellow rectangle marking the location of the excavation on the southern end of the western hill. Interestingly, the cemetery with Oskar Schindler’s grave abuts the dig site.