Richard T. Nowitz

The golden Dome of the Rock sparkles in JerusalemÆs late afternoon sunlight. In “Sacred Geometry—Unlocking the Secret of the Temple Mount, Part 1,” BAR 25:04, author David Jacobson argued that the eight-sided Islamic mosque, built in 691 C.E., now stands on the location where King Herod the Great rebuilt the Jerusalem Temple in 20/19 B.C.E., atop a vast esplanade known as the Temple Mount. Directly to the east of the Dome of the Rock is the small Dome of the Chain (in the photo, taken facing northeast, the small gray dome is visible in the long shadow cast by the Dome of the Rock), which now occupies the spot where a sacrificial altar stood directly east of the entrance to HerodÆs Temple. The sacrificial altar marked the focal point of the raised Temple Mount, which, Jacobson argued, extended slightly further to the northeast than al-Haram al-Sharif (the Noble Sanctuary), the platform that supports the Dome of the Rock and al-Aqsa Mosque today.

In part 2 of this article, Jacobson continues his search for residual traces of Herod’s blueprint for the Temple Mount in the design of al-Haram al-Sharif.