See Terence Kleven, “Up the Waterspout—How David’s General Joab Got Inside Jerusalem,” BAR 20:04; and Dan Gill, “How They Met—Geology Solves Long-Standing Mystery of Hezekiah’s Tunnelers,” BAR 20:04 (also available on our Web site: See also Yigal Shiloh, “The Rediscovery of Warren’s Shaft,” BAR 07:04.


Yigal Shiloh, “The Rediscovery of Warren’s Shaft,” BAR 07:04.


According to Ronny Reich and Eli Shukron (“Light at the End of the Tunnel—Warren’s Shaft Theory of David’s Conquest Shattered,” BAR 25:01; also available on our Web site:, the tunnel system that now provides access to the top of Warren’s Shaft was never intended to lead there; it was reached only by accident in the eighth century B.C., nearly 300 years after David conquered the city. The tunnel actually went on to two huge towers protecting a pool of water near the Gihon Spring.


Hershel Shanks, The City of David—A Guide to Biblical Jerusalem (Jerusalem: Bazak, 1973). The entrance to the cave at the bottom of the shaft had been blocked by the Parker Mission in 1910, leaving only a small hole at the top of the blocking wall. This wall remains in place today.


Perhaps he entered through the water system discovered by Reich and Shukron that ended in the towers by the Gihon Spring. See Hershel Shanks, “First Person: New Life for an Old Theory,” BAR 25:01.


One of the few who have climbed the shaft, excavator Yigal Shiloh observed: “Climbing with the aid of the lowered rope appeared to be relatively simple. However, here too we were surprised, for the climb up the shaft obviously demanded special abilities which we hadn’t realized were needed. From among the entire team of archaeologists, only two reached the top of the dark shaft, even with the help of the rope—the author and the expedition’s photographer, Itzhak Harari.” See Shiloh, “The Rediscovery of Warren’s Shaft,” BAR 07:04.