Zev Radovan

Only a king could have commanded the construction of such a massive wall, originally 23 feet wide and about 27 feet high. The late Nahman Avigad, who in 1969 discovered more than 210 feet of this wall in Jerusalem’s Jewish Quarter, dubbed it the Broad Wall (after Nehemiah 3:8) and identified it as the work of Hezekiah. The prophet Isaiah appears to describe its construction: “You [presumably Hezekiah], took note of the many breaches in the City of David … and pulled houses down to fortify the wall” (Isaiah 22:9–10). In the bottom left corner of the photo are the remains of a home that was partially demolished to build the wall.

In the photograph, a man stands just behind a slight bend in the wall. Although the excavated remains do not indicate the precise line of the entire wall, this bend to the southwest (also shown on the map) indicates that the wall was built to encompass the city as it expanded from the City of David (on the eastern ridge) to the western ridge.