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The Holy City of Jew, Moslem, and Christian-A Summary of its History-Situation-Jerusalem of To-day-Population
Religious Sects—The Walls and Gates-Streets and Bazaars-A Scene near the Jaffa Gate–The Tower of Hippicus
Y ERUSALEM is unlike any other city in the world. Age after age, pilgrims
have been drawn to it; scholars have studied every particular concerning it; e explorers have searched with wistful eyes through its ruins ; teachers have
collected every scrap of information about it to tell reverently to their pupils ; A preachers have framed ten thousand sermons upon it; painters and poets have 9 described it over and over again, and in minutest detail. And why? Because in the veins of every man there is the beating of a spiritual life whose origins are recorded in the wondrous series of legends, genealogies, surveys, histories, laws, poetry, which formed
hr intenzure of the ancient people of that land whose capital was Jerusalemma literature preserved in the sacred books which Christendom treasures as her Bible.
Evert spui in that “ Hus" Land has a sacred interest wherever the Bible is in circulation; ini whatever interest other spots mar present, the interest of all is summed up in Jerusalem. Thert was the Salem from whence, in the narrative of Abraham, Melchizedek, the King of Peart, came down to greet the Patriarch of the Hebrew race. « There was the impregnable fortress from which, long after their fellow-Hittites had been swept away, the men of Jebus looked out defiantly over the settlement and strife of the invader. There stood the city of David, and the royal tombs that received, one by one, the long line of David's descendants. There, over against it, rose, fell, and rose again, the great Temple which enshrined the faith of the Jew. There stood that Holy Sepulchre from which flowed the faith of Christendom. 11 is the Holy City of Jew, of Moslem, of Christian, alike; the obe fount to which all these wider direrging streams look back for their origin. It is the one spot where Jew and Christian and Moslem still meet face to face, the home to which that strange race, dispersed throughout the world, clings as its own; the one point where the jealousies of Eastern and Western Christendom still rage with mediæral intensity; the one point where the fated rivalry between the Turk and Christendom has taken fire in our own day, and threatens to take fire still."
In the thrilling story of the history of the Hor City told to sacred and secular writers we have the record of the capture of the citadel of the Jebusites, which thenceforth took the name of the City of David," and Jerusalem became the end and religious centre of the united kingdom of Israel and Judah. There, ton, we read of b:- it was adorned and fortified by Solomon, and the great Temple built on Miant Moriah; bow in Rehoboam's reign it was besieged and plundered by Shishak, King of Egypi; bow it engaged in struggles with the revolted tribes; how it was attacked br Syrians, Assyrians, and Egyptians, pillaged lis Philistines and Arabians besieged br the Assyrians ander sesa berk, fortified and restored lor llechiah, takin, ransacked, and purchar destored tr Setachadnezzar, and its inhaliaris caudar Balylun; how. In ihe deres e gy of Ezra, Sebemiah, and oibors, the CT is nie ui mihstanding the option of :be Samaritans; how it is juis ibu tunas id n ibe Gzi, sf N r Sots, King of Egypt, and of the Scicacdr o Sr. H. Tas äramind and round Ir Arindhas Erdrhanes, and sina linda MPTEUIL VN Nita unithe snob Vacan Trans; how it was Caken dor 1 EL je Perry made b y to Rime: b* Head the Great het wir S i
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and will dom the most of the plateau on every side but the north by the ravines of two streamlets which shut it in eastward and westward, and one of which bends round its southern front ere it joins its fellow in a common descent to the Dead Sea. The fall of these two lateral valleys is very greatsome 600 feet in a little more than a mile—and the result is that, looked at across their junction from the south, Jerusalem appears to stand on the summit of a considerable cliff. A dry valley running northward, however, divides its mass into two elevations, the Western Zion overlooking its Eastern rival of Moriah. .. Zion is in effect the city of David, the site of the palaces and tombs of the Kings; Moriah is the site of the Temple ; the valley between—the valley of the Tyropeon--probably the site of the lower trading town. The look of the whole is still the look which the dual termination of the Hebrew name is perhaps intended to convey, that of a double city; the city of the Jebusite and the Hebrew, the capital of the composite kingdom of Israel and Judah, the joint throne of King and Priest... But in any save these grander features of the site it is impossible to imagine a greater contrast than between the silent rubbish-heaps covered with lines of squalid streets, which form the modern city, and the city of David and the Kings; Moriah crowned with the proud colonnades of the Temple, linked to Olivet by an immense viaduct, and spanning the Tyropæon with another; Zion covered with the gorgeous palaces, and not less gorgeous tombs, of an Eastern dynasty, the lower city buzzing with the noise of shop and bazaar, and on either side the silence of the two ravines, the homes of the dead dotted with sepulchres, and foul with the refuse of the capital.”
It would be impossible in our limited space to give an account of the city in each of its historical epochs, and to the majority of readers it would be uninteresting. All we can attempt to do is to describe it as it is to-day.
It is difficult to obtain any satisfactory estimate of the population of Jerusalem, which has been variously given from 10,000 to 30,000. It is probable that 24,000 is nearer the mark
-composed of 13,000 Moslems, 7,000 Christians, and 4,000 Jews. The Moslems, as a body, are natives, and concerning them a theory of interest has of late years been started by M. Clermont-Ganneau, in which he claims that a large part of the present inhabitants of Palestine generally, who commonly pass for Arabs, are nothing less than the descendants of the nations which occupied the land before the Hebrew conquest under Joshua ; that the existing peasantry are not Arabs or Hebrews, but Canaanites, Jebusites, Perizzites, Hittites, and others of the seven doomed nations. In his view these elder inhabitants of Canaan have lived through all conquests, all settlements from the Hebrew to the Ottoman; he holds that the inhabitants of the rural districts of Palestine, as opposed to those of the towns, are still their direct descendants. He grounds his argument on supposed remains of Semitic Polytheism among the Arab-speaking fellahs; on the identity of the language spoken alike by Hebrews and Canaanites; on the facts, as recorded in the Scriptures, that the conquering Hebrews did not exterminate the original inhabitants, but “mingled among the heathen and learned their works," and that when the Israelites were carried to Babylon the poor of the land—the forefathers, according to M. Clermont-Ganneau, of the present fellahs—were left bebind; and, finally, that the later conquests of Palestine were not conquests of extermination.
The Jews are divided into two sects—the Sephardim, of Spanish origin, and the Askenazim, chiefly of German and Polish origin. Nearly all live on the charity of their European brethren; many of them have come to the Holy City in order that they may die there and be buried with their people. There are several admirable institutions for the benefit of poor Jews in Jerusalem, founded by Sir Moses Montefiore and other wealthy and benevolent European Jews.
The Christians of Jerusalem are composed of various sects, the most powerful being those of the - Greek Church, whose patriarch has his residence and episcopal throne there. They possess some of the largest and richest monasteries and foundations in the city. The Armenians, whose patriarch is styled “ Patriarch of Jerusalem," and lives at the monastery next to Zion Gate, are a branch of that church and nation whose members are spread so widely over the various provinces of the Turkish Empire. The Armenians and the Greeks are better disposed towards the Protestants than towards their chief opponents—the Roman Catholics. The Copts, the sole representatives of the ancient race that built the Pyramids, who intermarry only with their own sect, are not numerous, but they have a monastery which is the residence of a bishop. The Syrians of the ancient church (Jacobites) are under the protection of the Armenians, but have a bishop and a few priests; and the poor Abyssinians, who live from hand to mouth, have a monastery beside the Church of the Sepulchre.
The Latins, or Roman Catholies—the deadly enemies of the Greeks-number about 1,500 souls, and are possessed of considerable wealth and influence. Affiliated to them are the Oriental churches of the Greek Catholics and the United Armenians, numbering about 50 souls.
It is hardly necessary to say that the Protestants are not a numerous community in Jerusalem. A Mission of Inquiry was instituted in 1820 by the Society for Promoting Christianity among the Jews, and in 1824 Dr. Dalton, the first missionary, took up his residence there. In 1841 the Governments of England and Prussia entered into an agreement to establish a bishopric there, the diocese to embrace Mesopotamia, Chaldea, Syria, Palestine, Egypt, and Abyssinia. In connection with the evangelical work of the mission is a school for proselytes and Jewish children, a boys' school for natives and Protestant Arabs, an Arabic church and school, a Hospital of the Deaconesses of Kaiserswerth—an admirable institution open to every suffering human creature of whatever faith-two orphanages, a leper hospital, a children's hospital, and the Hospital of St. John. The English church, for many years under the care of Bishop Gobat, is situated on Mount Zion.
The best approach to Jerusalem is from the Mount of Olives, when the whole city bursts upon the view and presents an appearance more imposing than from any other spot, every building of importance standing out sharply, and the walls and other surroundings giving to it a vastness which is not seen elsewhere. The next best approach is from the hill Scopus, the route taken by travellers from the north; while the least impressive first-view of the city is that seen by those who come from Jaffa, the effect of the general appearance being greatly marred by huge blocks of modern buildings, chiefly Russian.
Jerusalem is enclosed by a wall nearly forty feet high, irregular, and conformed to the hills over which it passes, massive in appearance, but in reality very far from substantial; it was built in the sixteenth century, and only a few courses of its stone belong to the wall of an ancient date. Anund the walls are thirty-four towers, and in the walls are seven gates, five