“The priests brought the Ark of the Covenant of YHWH to its place, in the Holy of Holies [dvir
] of the Temple” (1 Kings 8:6
). That “place” can now be identified as the rectangular depression in es-Sakhra that measures 2 feet 7 inches by 4 feet 4 inches—1.5 by 2.5 cubits—the same dimensions as the Ark of the Covenant that God commanded Moses to build in the wilderness (Exodus 25:10
) and which was later housed in the Temple.
One puzzling detail: The Ark, placed in this depression, would be positioned with its narrow side facing the front of the Temple. This was necessary, however, because the 10-cubit-long staves on which the Ark was transported could not have been removed if the Ark had been placed with its long side facing the front of the Temple: The Holy of Holies in which the Ark was placed was only 20 cubits wide.