- Yad Avshalom
Yad Avshalom (Lang-he|יד אבשלום, lit. "Absalom's Shrine"), also known as the Tomb of Absalom, is an ancient tomb with a conical roof located in the
Kidron Valleyin Jerusalem, Israel.
Archaeologists have dated the tomb to the first century CE. It has been traditionally identified as the tomb of
Absalom, the rebellious son of King David, based on a verse in the Book of Samuel: "Absalom in his lifetime had taken and reared up for himself a pillar, which is in the king's dale: for he said, I have no son to keep my name in remembrance: and he called the Monument after his own name: and it is called unto this day, Absalom's Monument." bibleverse|2|Samuel|18:18|HE"The Guide to Israel" Zev Vilnay, Hamakor Press, Jerusalem, 1970, "Pillar of Absalom," pp. 157-158]
The recent discovery of a fourth-century inscription on one of the walls of the monument suggests that it was the burial place of the Temple priest
Zechariah (priest), father of John the Baptist. [ [http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/ShArt.jhtml?itemNo=320531 Jewish Yad Avshalom revealed as a Christian shrine from Byzantine era] Haaretz]
For centuries, it was the custom among passersby - Jews, Christians and Muslims - to throw stones at the monument. Residents of Jerusalem would bring their unruly children to the site to teach them what became of a rebellious son.
According to a local legend,
Napoleonfired a mortar at the tomb and removed the shape of a hand that topped the conical roof. [Morgenstern, A (2006) " [http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=N4q25b69yQ8C&pg=PA11&lpg=PA11&dq=yad+avshalom+napoleon&source=web&ots=lCX4O_eMZk&sig=5mNVrgWxJAv9ZAqoj-h_9sVn6Bs&hl=en Hastening Redemption: Messianism and the Resettlement of the Land of Israel] " p11, Oxford University Press, ISBN:0195305787] It is known however that Napoleon never reached Jerusalem during his campaign in the Holy Land.Reportably a hand was carved on top of the tomb-indicating it was a tomb of a Kohen.A Muslim tradition connects the tomb to the Pharaohs - hence the Arabic name "Pharaoh's Hat".
* [http://jerusalem360.com/panoramas/tomb_of_absalom_1 Virtual Tour of Jerusalem] Jerusalem360.com
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