Leen Ritmeyer

The Royal Stoa: The largest structure on the Temple Mount, this grand hall extended across the southern end of the great platform, from east to west. Built in the style of a basilica, the stoa was divided into a central nave and side aisles by four rows of 40 columns each.

One row consisted of pilasters built into the southern wall. A second row, 40 monoliths topped by Corinthian capitals, created an aisle adjacent to the nave. A third row divided the nave from an aisle on the other side. The fourth, northernmost row formed an open colonnade, not a wall as on the southern side. Through this open row of columns one could proceed into the Temple court.