Jerusalem And Empires

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In this article I draw an outline for understanding the settlement oscillations in Jerusalem between the Late Bronze Age Amarna period and the First Jewish Revolt. I begin by posing a question regarding the "Jerusalem Anomaly": located in a remote, marginal area with no natural resources, how was it that Jerusalem twice grew to be-come the largest city in the southern Levant? I propose that Jerusalem could reach a state of high prosperity only as a vassal serving the interests of great empires (Assyria and Rome). It could also benefit from serving local Levantine powers (Damascus and Israel). In the era discussed here Jerusalem achieved a state of prosperity as a relatively independent center of power only once - in the few decades from the days of John Hyrcanus until the takeover of the region by Pompey the Great.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-47
Number of pages17
JournalHebrew Bible and Ancient Israel
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Times Cited in Web of Science Core Collection: 1 Total Times Cited: 1 Cited Reference Count: 68


  • Jerusalem
  • Judah
  • Empires
  • Amarna Period
  • Assyria
  • Hasmoneans
  • CITY
  • BCE


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