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The Dome of the Rock, Jerusalem

The Dome of the Rock
Muslims consider this to be the site where Abraham almost sacrificed his elder son Ishmael, whereas Jews and Christians believe it was Isaac, not Ishmael. There is some controversy among secular scholars about equating Mount Moriah (where Isaac's binding occurred according to the Biblical narrative), the Temple Mount and the location where Jacob saw the ladder to heaven; but for orthodox Jews at least there is no doubt that all these events occurred on this spot. Other, extra-Biblical Jewish traditions say it is the spot where the first stone was laid in the building of the world.

The Dome of the Rock was built for Caliph Abd al-Malik by Byzantine craftsmen from Constantinople sent to the Caliph by the Byzantine Emperor. It is in the shape of a Byzantine martyrium, a structure intended for the housing and veneration of saintly relics and is an excellent example of middle Byzantine art.
Under the dome
Under the dome
On entering the central dome area, one sees an excellent example of Byzantine archetecture.

The rock
The rock, itself, as seen from the walkway around the inside of the dome.
For more information on the Dome of the Rock and its history, click here.


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