13 Facts About Second Temple


Construction on the Second Temple began some time after the conquest of Babylon by the Achaemenid Persian Empire, following a proclamation by the Persian king Cyrus the Great that enabled the Jewish return to Zion.

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The Second Temple stood for approximately 585 years before its destruction in 70 CE by the Roman Empire as retaliation for an ongoing Jewish revolt.

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Second Temple finds that the Israelites have been backsliding and taking non-Jewish wives, and he stays in Jerusalem to enforce the Law.

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The Second Temple was completed on the third day of the month Adar, in the sixth year of the reign of Darius, amid great rejoicings on the part of all the people, although it was evident that the Jews were no longer an independent people, but were subject to a foreign power.

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Second Temple included many of the original vessels of gold that had been taken by the Babylonians but restored by Cyrus the Great.

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Traditional rabbinic literature states that the Second Temple stood for 420 years, and, based on the 2nd-century work, placed construction in 356 BCE, 164 years later than academic estimates, and destruction in 68 CE .

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Fifth order, or division, of the Mishnah, known as Kodashim, provides detailed descriptions and discussions of the religious laws connected with Second Temple service including the sacrifices, the Second Temple and its furnishings, as well as the priests who carried out the duties and ceremonies of its service.

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Second Temple was pursued by Pompey and surrendered but his followers closed Jerusalem to Pompey's forces.

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Above the Huldah Gates, on top the Second Temple walls, was the Royal Stoa, a large basilica praised by Josephus as "more worthy of mention than any other [structure] under the sun"; its main part was a lengthy Hall of Columns which includes 162 columns, structured in four rows.

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Between the entrance of the actual Second Temple building and the curtain veiling the Holy of Holies were the Second Temple vessels: the menorah, the incense-burning altar, and various other implements.

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Sects of Judaism that had their base in the Second Temple dwindled in importance, including the priesthood and the Sadducees.

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Second Temple was on the site of what today is the Dome of the Rock.

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Jewish eschatology includes a belief that the Second Temple will be replaced by a future Third Temple in Jerusalem; Eastern Orthodox Christians contend that the Third Temple already exists in every consecrated and canonical church through the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist.

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