See Neil A. Silberman, “In Search of Solomon’s Lost Treasures,” BAR 6:04.


While Shiloh and Gill found that the cavity of the shaft descends several feet below what was known until now, this does not occur precisely at the bottom of the shaft, but rather a few feet to the side. The depth exactly at the bottom of the shaft is only about a foot. Little or no water would flow into it at a low water level.



The identification of the southeastern hill, near the Gihon Spring, with the “City of David” derives from these excavations. Actually, a consensus has existed among scholars only since Parker’s excavations (and the discovery of early Bronze pottery—identified by Louis-Hugues Vincent).


Louis-Hugues Vincent, Underground Jerusalem: Discoveries on the Hill of Ophel (1909–1911) (London, 1911), p. 11.


It appears that the New Revised Standard Version translates tsinnor as “water shaft” because of Warren’s Shaft. This would appear to be a clear case where an archaeological find influenced the translator.


See Yigal Shiloh, “Underground Water Systems in the Land of Israel in the Iron Age,” in The Architecture of Ancient Israel: From the Prehistoric to the Persian Periods, ed. Aharon Kempinski and Ronny Reich (Jerusalem: Israel Exploration Society, 1992), pp. 275–293; Dan Gill, “The Geology of the City of David and Its Ancient Subterranean Waterworks,” in Excavations at the City of David 1978–1985, Directed by Yigal Shiloh, Qedem 35 (1966), ed. Donald T. Ariel and Alon DeGroot, pp. 1–28; Dan Gill, “How They Met—Geology Solves Long-Standing Mysteries of Hezekiah’s Tunnelers,” BAR 20:04.


The name was originally used by Conrad Schick to distinguish it from Hezekiah’s Tunnel, which was designated Channel I. Later another more eastern channel leading from the Gihon southwards was given the title Channel I.


This pool was already known to Parker and Vincent, who entered it from below. Parker and Vincent named it the “Round Chamber” (Vincent, Underground Jerusalem, pl. 2), although it is not a chamber because it has no ceiling. We encountered the “Round Chamber” from above. To preserve a snippet of history, we may also record the following: After Parker and Vincent entered Channel II and from there entered their “Round Chamber,” they sealed the entrance. In 1970 two young archaeology students who were at the time assistants to Professor Nahman Avigad dared to break through the blocking and tour the channel but did not record their visit. They were Amihai Mazar, now the distinguished excavator of Beth-Shean and Tel Rehov, and Ronny Reich. Only a decade later did Yigal Shiloh enter it again.


See Ronny Reich, “Four Notes on Jerusalem,” Israel Exploration Journal 37 (1987), pp. 163–164 nn. 2–3.


A similar change was made to the Hazor water system.