Foundation Stone from the Fortification Wall of Jerusalem
Jerusalem (Israel), 41-70 C.E.
- Limestone: carved
- 21 5/8 x 24 1/2 x 41 1/2 in. (54.9 x 62.2 x 105.4 cm)
- The Jewish Museum, New York
- Gift of Evi Bossanyi Loeb in honor of Howard S. Levy through the National Museum of American Jewish History, Philadelphia, 1993-30
The rise of the monarchy in ancient Israel is marked in archaeological excavations by the sudden appearance in Israelite territory of new city plans, including fortification walls and large city gates. Many cities also included fortresses and palatial residences. Such building projects could not have happened without the organization of a centralized government and resources collected in the form of taxes and conscripted labor. In exchange for these taxes, the government protected the people from enemy attack and maintained order in the land. The ancient Israelites faced frequent wars with their neighbors.