1. Biblical Account and Commentary
nomadic branch of the Semites, were enslaved in Egypt for centuries till their
exodus c.14th century BC guided by Moses. He, though an offspring of Hebrew
slaves, was educated at the royal Pharaonic court under the patronage of an
Egyptian princess. Biblical records, if to be trusted for historical references,
indicate that he lead the Hebrews out of bondage in Egypt and through the
Sinai desert on their way to southern Canaan/Phoenicia.
As a people, the Egyptians had a very racist and antagonistic stand vis-à-vis
all other races. They considered Semitic Hebrews, Canaanites, Libyans, Black
Nubians (even though Nubian Pharaohs ruled Egypt for 100 years), Ethiopians
and other non-Egyptians as sub-human. Hence, they treated the aforesaid Hebrew
nomads with disdain. It is, therefore, safe to say that most Hebrews in Egypt
were not permitted to rise as a people and they suffered in ignorance and
in the Desert
On their way out of Egypt, the Hebrews spent 40 years wandering in the
desert of Sinai. During this time all who left Egypt died, including Moses
himself who saw the "promised" land but did not live long enough
to enter it. Consequently, the Hebrews arrived in Canaan/Phoenicia uncivilized
nomads with very little skills or knowledge which civilized people of the
area had. By the time they captured Jerusalem c. 1000 BC they have had very
little newly acquired capabilities other than fighting wars with the Canaanites/Phoenicians,
the Philistines, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Aramaeans, the Ammonites,
the Amalekites and the Edomites.
of Building Techniques
The Hebrews never had the enough opportunity to master the art and science
of building in Egypt. They were hardened in the desert and in battle but lacked
the know-how to build palaces worthy of kings or a Temple worthy of God, the
Ark of the Covenant, the Tablets of the Law and the Pentateuch of Moses. These
important items of the Hebrew religion were treasured in a tabernacle (tent)
up till this point in time.
Help Kings David and Solomon
When David was chosen king and, thereafter, Solomon; they were in need
of artisans, architects, craftsmen, builders and building material especially
wood and precious metals to build a temple and palace. The best known and
most gifted people to fulfill the kings' needs were the Phoenicians. Hence,
both kings sought and received Phoenician know-how and materials.
of Melqart of Tyre
The Phoenicians had a proven record of their building skills in their
Temple of Melqart in Tyre. Historians refer to it as one of unmatched magnificence
in the Eastern Mediterranean. It was said to have two great columns one of
gold and the other covered with precious stones. Herodotus sang its praises
when he visited Tyre. Its name was change to the Temple of Heracles when he
visited -- much like the name of the Columns of Melqart at Gibraltar
were changed to the Columns of Heracles/ Hercules.
The inside of King Solomon's Temple. The version linked to this thumbnail is medium. To view an extra large image click this second link.
Temple Copy of Melqart's Temple
After studying records about Solomon's Temple and Melqart's Temple, one
finds a lot in common between the two. It would not be a far-fetched suggestion
to say that Solomon's Temple of Jerusalem was a copy of Melqart's Temple of
Tyre. Because of the splendor it occupied in their mind, it is understandable
that the Phoenician builders must have used Melqart's Temple as a prototype
for designing and building Solomon's Temple.
of the Lever and Temple (outside), bird's
eye view of Temple, the Holy Place and the
Most Holy Place are linked herewith.
A special article
is dedicated to Phoenician architecture.
of palaces and temple for Kings David and Solomon of Judah-Israel by the Phoenician
King Hiram of Tyre
king Hiram of Tyre was born in 989 BC. He ruled from 970-936 BC. He established
friendly relations with David and his son Solomon, kings of the combined kingdoms
of Judah and Israel. Hiram built a palace for David and two palaces and a
temple for Solomon. A vast amount of information is given in the Bible about
of Tyre sent a trade mission to David; he provided him with cedar logs and
with stonemasons and carpenters to build a palace. (1 Chronicles 14:1)
move is much more significant than this short passage indicates. It was necessary
for a king to have a palace for his kingship to be recognised as legitimate.
In the Phoenician sagas from Ugarit, after Yam becomes king, skilled craftsmen
... a mansion
for Yam... a palace for Judge Nahar
... they are building a mansion for Prince Yam
they are constructing a palace for Judge Nahar, a house like...
When Baal conquers
Yam, El installs him as king:
At that moment
verily the bull El his father,
the god who installed him as king, cried out,
Athirat and her sons,
Ellat and the company of her kinsfolk
Now there isnt a house for Baal like El
nor a court like the sons of Athirat...
to his sister Anat and asks her to petition El for permission to build a palace:
And now, no
house has Baal like the gods,
nor court like the children of Asherah.
The dwelling of El is the shelter of his son,
the dwelling of Lady Asherah of the Sea.
El agrees that
Baal can build a palace to consolidate his position, and it will be magnificent.
Anat takes Baal the good news from El:
I have brought
you good news.
A house will be built for you like your brothers
and a court like your relatives.
Call a caravan into your house
a convoy into your palace;
the rocks will yield you much silver,
the mountains the choicest of gold,
and a mansion of silver and gold will be built,
a mansion of brilliant stones, even sapphires.
Baal did rejoice,
he did call a caravan into his mansion,
a convoy within his palace,
that the rocks might yield him much silver
and the mountains the choicest of gold,
that they might yield him the noblest of gems...
Yam and Baal
gained their kingship through victory in battle yet still were not considered
established as kings until they had their own palaces. David wasnt in
as strong a position. His need to establish legitimacy was greater because
he had usurped the thrones of both Judah and Israel from the existing royal
line of Saul without the benefit of conquest.
The Hebrews originally
had "judges" not kings. They instituted kings while they were trying
to conquer southern Phoenicia because they saw that the Phoenicians and Philistines
(Palestinians) were more effective in battle as they had kings who provided
strong central leadership.
Saul was the
first Hebrew king and was king of Judah, the territory of the tribe of Judah,
which ran from south of Jerusalem up to and including Hebron. Saul was killed
in battle along with three of his sons but legitimate heirs to the throne
survived. First in line was Ishbaal, another of Sauls sons.
(The Bible calls
Ishbaal Ishbosheth as the Hebrews later changed Hebrew names that included
the Phoenician god Baal so that it looked as if the Hebrews had never worshipped
the Phoenician gods.).
When David took
over as king of Judah, the commander of Sauls army, Abner, made Ishbaal
king of Israel. David ruled as king of Judah for seven and a half years, from
his capital city, Hebron. Ishbaal ruled as king over the Hebrews northern
kingdom, Israel, which covered the Samaria hill country.
Ishbaal was assassinated
by two of his army officers but there was still a legitimate heir to the throne,
Jonathans son Mephibaal, Sauls grandson, who was crippled in
both feet (2 Samuel 9:13).
calls him Mephibosheth for the same reason it calls Ishbaal Ishbosheth).
was the heir to the throne, its unlikely that he could ever have reigned
because it seems the Hebrews, new to king-making, had adopted the Phoenician
rule that kings had to be without blemish. For example, a later king of Judah,
Uzziah, was not allowed to continue ruling when he contracted leprosy: The
Lord struck Uzziah with a dreaded skin disease that stayed with him the rest
of his life. He lived in a house on his own, relieved of all duties, while
his son Jotham governed the country. (2 Kings 15:5). So its
improbable that the people would have accepted a physically handicapped king
murder David became king over Judah and Israel and nobody made a claim on
behalf of Mephibaal. However, Mephibaal had sons, who could have challenged
David and/or his successors in the future. So David still needed to consolidate
At this point,
Hiram offered to build him a palace. This meant Hiram, the most powerful,
richest monarch in the region at the time, recognised Davids legitimacy
as king of Judah and Israel. His recognition would have had the same force
as a country recognising another country today by establishing diplomatic
relations and an embassy.
David was wise
enough to forestall future palace coup attempts by taking Mephibaal into his
own home and treating him like one of his own sons.
30 years old when he became king, and he ruled for 40 years. He ruled in Hebron
over Judah for seven and a half years, and in Jerusalem over all Israel and
Judah for 33 years. (2 Samuel 5:4-5)
Hebron was now
too far south to be an effective administrative base so David decided to make
the more central Jerusalem his capital. Jerusalem was a Phoenician city, inhabited
by a Phoenician people called the Jebusites. David attacked the city and managed
to occupy part of the eastern hillside outside the walls. This surprisingly
tiny area is still called Davids City today and is still outside the
city walls. The Phoenicians still lived in the city proper within the walls
and much later when David wanted a site to build the temple on, he had to
buy land from the Jebusite Araunah at a cost of 50 pieces of silver.
David was not
to build the temple. After his death, Hiram continued to maintain friendly
relations with Davids son, Solomon, who explained:
You know that
because of the constant wars my father David had to fight against the enemy
countries all round him, he could not build a temple for the worship of the
Lord his God until the Lord had given him victory over all his enemies. But
now the Lord my God has given me peace on all my borders. I have no enemies,
and there is no danger of attack. The Lord promised my father David, Your
son, whom I will make king after you, will build a temple for me and
I have now decided to build that temple for the worship of the Lord my God.
(1 Kings 5:3)
temple follows the traditional Phoenician design: an outer hallway or ulam,
a central open courtyard or heikal, and an inner holy of holies or
debir. There were two pillars outside the front entrance and rooms
for temple staff in an annex.
Not much archaeological
excavation on Phoenician temples has been carried out. The reason for this
seems to be that archaeologists and historians are generally more interested
in Greek, Roman and Hebrew history than in Phoenician. Why? All European civilisation
is believed to have stemmed from ancient Greece and Rome. Monotheism is believed
to have originated from the Hebrews. At any rate, once researchers reach the
Greek, Roman or Hebrew layers, they tend not to look further down. For example,
it is known that there are much older Phoenician temples under the Roman ones
at Baalbek but only one deep ditch has been dug to tell us anything about
them. However, excavation of the 13th century BC Phoenician temple
at Hazor and the 9th century one at Tell Tainat shows that Solomons
temple follows exactly the time-honoured Phoenician pattern.
There was a magnificent
temple to Melqart/Baal right in the centre of Tyre. All Phoenician temples
incorporated two pillars: originally a wooden one for Astarte and a stone
one for Baal. According to the ancient historian Herodotus, the Tyrian temple
had one emerald pillar and one of gold. The emerald one may have been green
Phoenician glass though given the wealth of Tyre may well have actually been
emerald. It had a candle inside so that it shone at night: the green obviously
symbolises a tree so the emerald pillar must have represented Astartes
wooden column. The gold one symbolised the wealth given by the earth, gold
being then the most precious metal to come out of stone, just as it is now.
There is some
material evidence of the pillars, too. Clay models of Phoenician temples
from the beginning of the first millennium (the time of Hiram, David
and Solomon) show the two columns at the temple entrance. Moreover,
temples in Cyprus, Samaria, Megiddo, Hazor and Ramat Rahel all had Phoenician-style
capitals for their pillars.
The Old Testament
description of Solomon's temple gives an idea of what the Tyrian temples must
have been like. Probably they were even more magnificent - Hiram would hardly
have built something better for Solomon than he had built for himself.
temple was built by Phoenician master craftsmen alongside Hebrew workmen and
30,000 unskilled navvies pressed by Solomon into forced labour. In an attempt
to establish that the land was Hebrew not Phoenician, the Bible calls these
people foreigners. But they were not foreign; they were the Phoenician
residents of Judah and Israel. In a move reminiscent of the way the Hebrews
had been treated in Egypt, Solomon made them work as slaves for a month on
and two months off in shifts of 10,000 at a time.
At the end of
every war, at the beginning of periods of peace, the Phoenician sagas say:
I have a tale
and I will tell it,
a word and I will repeat it,
a tale of wood and a whisper of stone,
a tale that mankind may know
and that the multitudes of the earth may understand...
This is what
happened with Solomon. Davids wars were over, peace reigned, and Solomons story is not about slingshots, spears, bows and swords
but about wood and stone - and metal.
When he was ready
to build the temple, Solomon wrote to Hiram:
So send your
men to Lebanon to cut down cedars for me. My men will work with them, and
I will pay your men whatever you decided. As you well know, my men dont
know how to cut down trees as well as yours do. (1 Kings 5:6)
sent Solomon the following message: "I have received your message and
I am ready to do what you ask. I will provide the cedars and the pine trees.
My men will bring the logs down from Lebanon to the sea, and will tie them
together in rafts to float them down the coast to the place you choose. There
my men will untie them and your men will take charge of them. On your part,
I would like you to supply the food for my men." (1 Kings 5:8-10).
I know how
skillful your woodmen are, so send me cedar, cypress, and juniper logs from
Lebanon. I am ready to send my men to assist yours in preparing large quantities
of timber, because this temple I intend to build will be large and magnificent.
As provisions for your workmen, I will send you two thousand tonnes of wheat,
two thousand tonnes of barley, four hundred thousand litres of wine, and four
hundred thousand litres of olive oil. (2 Chronicles 2:8-10)
And Hiram replied:
In the mountains
of Lebanon we will cut down all the cedars you need, bind them together in
rafts, and float them by sea as far as Joppa. From there you can take them
to Jerusalem. (2 Chronicles 2:16)
The cedars used
for the temple were taken from Barouk in the Chouf Mountain area, as oral
tradition in Lebanon still maintains. Apart from cutting down the trees and
trimming them, it must have been an enormous task transporting them from Barouk
down the mountains to the coast.
and woodcarvers worked hard too. The whole interior of the temple was panelled
in cedar, the roofs were cedar, the floors were pine. Everything was carved
with gourds, flowers, fruit, palm trees and cherubim.
He put in
a ceiling made of beams and boards of cedar. The three-storied annexe, each
storey 2.2 metres high, was built against the outside walls of the temple,
and was joined to them by cedar beams. (1 Kings 6:9)
walls were covered with cedar panels from the floor to the ceiling, and the
floor was made of pine. An inner room, called the Holy of Holies, was built
in the rear of the temple. It was 9 metres long and was partitioned off by
cedar boards reaching from the floor to the ceiling. (1 Kings 6:15-16)
panels were decorated with carvings of gourds and flowers; the whole interior
was covered with cedar, so that the stones of the walls could not be seen.
(1 Kings 6:18)
was covered with cedar panels. (1 Kings 6:20)
Tyre was famous
for its purple dye and Sidon for its embroidered cloth. Embroidered linen
dyed with Phoenician purple was used in the Holy of Holies:
for the Holy of Holies was made of linen and of other material, which was
dyed blue, purple, and red, with designs of the winged creatures worked into
it. (2 Chronicles 3:14)
The temple was
built of stone quarried and prepared by masons from the Phoenician cities
of Tyre and Jbail (Byblos). The stones were cut in the quarry: the Bible tells
us not a hammer was heard on the building site as the stones had been shaped
so perfectly that they slotted together without being banged into place. The
Phoenicians always used huge stones for foundations because the Levant is
located on the Great Rift Valley - the big stones helped make buildings earthquake-proof.
The master mason
was the architect, too, and had to know geometry. Masons knowledge was
kept secret, known at any given time only to three people.
The modern Freemasons
Society developed from the Phoenician masons, which is why their rituals are
kept secret. The Freemasons' name the chief mason working on the temple as
Huram Abiff, son of a Tyrian widow, presumably the same person as Huram the
widows son who did the metalwork. One of the Freemasons rituals
is a re-enactment of the mugging and murder of Huram in the temple by Israelite
workmen who wanted to extract the secrets of architectural design and construction
from him. The ritual drama has his assailants attacking Huram at each corner
of the temple with builders tools before they finally kill him because
he wont hand over the secret knowledge.
At King Solomons
command they quarried fine large stones for the foundation of the temple.
Solomons and Hirams workmen and men from the city of Byblos prepared
the stones and the timber to build the temple. (1 Kings 5:17-18)
The temple was
quite small but none the less impressive:
was 27 metres long, 9 metres wide, and 13.5 metres high. The entrance room
was 4.5 metres deep and 9 metres wide, as wide as the sanctuary itself. The
walls of the temple had openings in them, narrower on the outside than on
the inside. Against the outside walls, on the sides and the back of the temple,
a three-storied annexe was built, each storey 2.2 metres high. Each room in
the lowest storey was 2.2 metres wide, in the middle storey 2.7 metres wide,
and in the top storey 3.1 metres wide. The temple wall on each floor was thinner
than on the floor below so that the rooms could rest on the wall without having
their beams built into it. The stones with which the temple was built had
been prepared at the quarry, so that there was no noise made by hammers, axes,
or any other iron tools as the temple was being built. The entrance to the
lowest storey of the annexe was on the south side of the temple, with stairs
leading up to the second and third storeys. So King Solomon finished building
the temple. (1 Kings 6:2-9)
An inner court
was built in front of the temple, enclosed with walls which had one layer
of cedar beams for every three layers of stone. (1 Kings 6:36)
The inner sanctuary
and altar of Solomon's temple were overlaid with gold. The doors were olive
and pine wood, also carved and covered in gold.
In the rear
of the temple an inner room was built, where the Lords Covenant Box
was to be placed. This inner room was 9 metres long, 9 metres wide, and 9
metres high, all covered with pure gold. (1 Kings 6:19)
of the temple was covered with gold, and gold chains were placed across the
entrance f the inner room, which was also covered with gold. The whole interior
of the temple was covered with gold, as well as the altar in the Holy of Holies.
(1 Kings 6:21-22)
Even the floor
was covered with gold. (1 Kings 6:30)
called Huram from Tyre did the bronze work:
sent for a man named Huram, a craftsman living in the city of Tyre, who was
skilled in bronze work. His father, who was no longer living, was from Tyre,
and had also been a skilled bronze craftsman; his mother was from the tribe
of Naphtali. Huram was an intelligent and experienced craftsman. He accepted
King Solomons invitation to be in charge of all the bronze work.
(1 Kings 7:13-14)
to Hiram of Tyre:
Now send me
a man with skill in engraving, in working gold, silver, bronze, and iron,
and in making blue, purple and red cloth. He will work with the craftsmen
of Judah and Jerusalem whom my father David selected. (2 Chronicles
I am sending
you a wise and skillful master craftsman named Huram. His mother was a member
of the tribe of Dan and his father was a native of Tyre. He knows how to make
things out of gold, silver, bronze, iron, stone and wood. He can work with
blue, purple, and red cloth, and with linen. He can do all sorts of engraving
and can follow any design suggested to him. Let him work with your skilled
workers and with those who worked for your father, King David. So now send
us the wheat, barley, wine and olive oil that you promised. (2 Chronicles
two bronze columns, each one 8 metres tall and 5.3 metres in circumference,
and placed them at the entrance of the temple. He also made two bronze capitals,
each one 2.2. metres tall, to be placed on top of the columns. The top of
each column was decorated with a design of interwoven chains, and two rows
of bronze pomegranates. The capitals were shaped like lilies, 1.8 metres tall,
and were placed on a rounded section which was above the chain design. There
were 200 bronze pomegranates in two rows round each capital. Huram placed
these two bronze columns in front of the entrance of the Temple: the one on
the south side was named Jachin (he establishes), and the one on the north
was named Boaz (by his strength). The lily-shaped bronze capitals were on
top of the columns. And so the work on the columns was completed. (1
a round tank of bronze, 2.2. metres deep, 4.4. metres in diameter, and 13.2
metres in circumference. All round the outer edge of the rim of the tank were
two rows of bronze gourds, which had been cast all in one piece with the rest
of the tank. The tank rested on the backs of twelve bronze bulls that faced
outwards, three facing in each direction. The sides of the tank were 75 millimetres
thick. Its rim was like the rim of a cup, curving outwards like the petals
of a lily. The tank held about 40,000 litres. (1 Kings 7:23-26)
made ten bronze carts; each was 1.8 metres long, 1.8 metres wide and 1.3 metres
high. They were made of square panels which were set in frames, with the figures
of lions, bulls, and winged creatures on the panels; and on the frames, above
and underneath the lions and bulls, there were spiral figures in relief. Each
cart had four bronze wheels with bronze axles. At the four corners were bronze
supports for a basin; the supports were decorated with spiral figures in relief.
There was a circular frame on top for the basin. It projected upwards 45 centimetres
from the top of the cart and 18 centimetres down into it. It had carvings
round it. The wheels were 66 centimetres high; they were under the panels,
and the axles were of one piece with the carts. The wheels were like chariot
wheels; their axles, rims, spokes, and hubs were all of bronze. There were
four supports at the bottom corners of each cart, which were of one piece
with the cart. There was a 22 centimetre band round the top of each cart;
its supports and the panels were of one piece with the cart. The supports
and panels were decorated with figures of winged creatures, lions, and palm
trees, wherever there was space for them, with spiral figures all round. This,
then, is how the carts were made; they were all alike, having the same size
and shape. (1 Kings 7 27-37)
made ten basins, one for each cart. Each basin was 1.8 metres in diameter,
and held about 800 litres. He placed five of the carts on the south side of
the temple, and the other five on the north side; the tank he placed at the
south-east corner. (1 Kings 7:38-39)
made pots, shovels, and bowls. He completed all this work for King Solomon
for the Lords temple. This is what he made:
- The two
- The two
bowl-shaped capitals on top of the columns
- The design
of interwoven chains on each capital
- The 400
bronze pomegranates, in two rows of a hundred each round the design on each
- The ten
- The ten
- The tank
- The twelve
bulls supporting the tank
- The pots,
shovels and bowls
All this equipment
for the temple, which Huram made for King Solomon, was of polished bronze.
The king had it all made in the foundry between Sukkoth and Zarethan, in the
Jordan Valley. (1 Kings 7:40-46)
The pots, shovels
and bowls: the Bible details as:
30 gold basins,
1000 silver basins, 30 golden bowls, 40 silver bowls, and 1029 other vessels.
He covered the altar in gold and manufactured gold flowers, lamps, snuffers,
tongs, cups, incense dishes, pans to hold burning charcoal, and hinges for
the inner and outer doors
had gold furnishings made for the temple; the altar, the table for the bread
offered to God, the ten lampstands that stood in front of the Holy of Holies,
five on the south side and five on the north; the flowers, lamps, and tongs;
the cups, lamp snuffers, bowls, dishes for incense, and the pans used for
carrying live coals; and the hinges for the doors of the Holy of Holies and
of the outer doors of the temple. All these furnishings were made of gold.
(1 Kings 7 48-50)
which King Solomon built was 27 metres long and 9 metres wide. The entrance
room was the full width of the temple, 9 metres, and was 54 metres high. The
inside of the room was overlaid with pure gold. the main room was panelled
with cedar and overlaid with fine gold, in which were worked designs of palm
trees and chain patterns. The king decorated the temple with beautiful precious
stones and with gold imported from the land of Parvaim. He used the gold to
overlay the temple walls, the rafters, the thresholds, and the doors. On the
walls the workers carved designs of winged creatures. The inner room, called
the Holy of Holies, was 9 metres long and 9 metres wide, which was the full
width of the temple. Over 20 tonnes of gold were used to cover the walls of
the Holy of Holies. 570 grammes of gold were used for making nails, and the
walls of the upper rooms were also covered in gold. The king also ordered
his workers to make two winged creatures out of metal, cover them with gold,
and place them in the Holy of Holies, where they stood side by side facing
the entrance. Each had two wings, each wing 2.2. metres long, which were spread
out so that they touched each other in the centre of the room and reached
the wall on either side of the room, stretching across the full width of about
9 metres. (2 Chronicles 3:3-13)
The king made
two columns, each one 15.5 metres tall, and placed them in front of the temple.
Each one had a capital 2.2. metres tall. The tops of the columns were decorated
with a design of interwoven chains and one hundred bronze pomegranates. The
columns were set at the sides of the temple entrance: the one on the south
side was named Jachin, and the one on the north side was named Boaz. (2
had a bronze altar made, which was 9 metres square and 4.5 metres high. He
also made a round tank of bronze, 2.2 metres deep, 4.4. metres in diameter,
and 13.2 metres in circumference. All round the outer edge of the rim of the
tank were two rows of decorations, one above the other. The decorations were
in the shape of bulls, which had been cast all in one piece with the rest
of the tank. The tank rested on the backs of twelve bronze bulls that faced
outwards, three facing in each direction. The sides of the tank were 75 millimetres
thick. Its rim was like the rim of a cup, curving outwards like the petals
of a flower. The tank held about 60,000 litres.
made ten basins, five to be placed on the south side of the temple and five
on the north side. They were to be used to rinse the parts of the animals
that were burnt as sacrifices. The water in the large tank was for the priests
to use for washing.
ten gold lampstands according to the usual pattern, and ten tables, and placed
them in the main room of the temple, five lamp-stands and five tables on each
made a hundred gold bowls.
an inner courtyard for the priests, and also an outer courtyard. The doors
in the gates between the courtyards were covered with bronze. The tank was
placed near the south-east corner of the temple.
made pots, shovels, and bowls. He completed all the objects that he had promised
King Solomon he would make for the temple:
- The two
- The two
bowl-shaped capitals on top of the columns
- The design
of interwoven chains on each capital
- The 400
bronze pomegranates arranged in two rows round the design of each capital
- The ten
- The ten
- The tank
- The twelve
bulls supporting the tank
- The pots,
shovels and forks
master craftsman made all these objects out of polished bronze, as King Solomon
had commanded, for use in the temple of the Lord. The king had them all made
in the foundry between Sukkoth and Zeredah in the Jordan Valley. (2
also had gold furnishings made for the temple: the altar and the tables for
the bread offered to God; the lampstands and the lamps of fine gold that were
to burn in front of the Holy of Holies, according to plan; the flower decorations,
the lamps, and the tongs; the lamp snuffers, the bowls, the dishes for incense,
and the pans used for carrying live coals. All these objects were made of
pure gold. The outer doors of the temple and the doors to the Holy of Holies
were overlaid with gold. (2 Chronicles 4:19-22)
creatures were made of olive wood and placed in the Holy of Holies, each one
4.4 metres tall. Both were of the same size and shape. Each had two wings,
each wing 2.2 metres long, so that the distance from one wing tip to the other
was 4.4. metres. They were placed side by side in the Holy of Holies, so that
two of their outstretched wings touched each other in the middle of the room,
and the other two wings touched the walls. The two winged creatures were covered
with gold. The walls of the main room and of the inner room were all decorated
with carved figures of winged creatures, palm trees, and flowers... A double
door made of olive wood was set in place at the entrance of the Holy of Holies;
the top of the doorway was a pointed arch. The doors were decorated with carved
figures of winged creatures, palm trees, and flowers. The doors, the winged
creatures, and the palm trees were covered with gold. For the entrance to
the main room a rectangular door-frame of olive wood was made. There were
two folding doors made of pine and decorated with carved figures of winged
creatures, palm trees, and flowers, which were evenly covered with gold.
(1 Kings 6: 23-35)
King Hiram seems
to have been given a bit of a raw deal by Solomon:
of Tyre had provided him with all the cedar and pine and with all the gold
he wanted for this work. After it was finished, King Solomon gave Hiram twenty
cities in the region of Galilee. Hiram went to see them, and he did not like
them. So he said to Solomon, "So these, my brother, are the towns you
have given me!" For this reason the area is still called Cabul (worthless).
(1 Kings 8:10-13)
The temple was
finished in 960 BC, having taken seven years to build. Though Solomon at this
time thought enough of his god Yahweh to build this magnificent temple in
his honour, in later life he worshipped the Phoenician gods instead.
All the contents
of the temple were taken off as loot when Judah was conquered by the Babylonians
in the 6th century BC. The Persians, whose empire succeeded that
of the Babylonians, restored some of the treasures:
them back the bowls and cups that King Nebuchadnezzar had taken from the temple
in Jerusalem and had put in the temple of his gods. He handed them over to
Mithredath, chief of the royal treasury, who made an inventory of them for
Sheshbazzar, the governor of Judah, as follows:
- gold bowls
for offerings 30
bowls for offerings 1,000
- other bowls
- small gold
- small silver
- other utensils
In all there
were 5,400 gold and silver bowls and other articles which Sheshbazzar took
with him when he and the other exiles went from Babylon to Jerusalem.
Palace and his Egyptian Wifes Palace
two palaces took much longer to complete than the temple:
built a palace for himself, and it took him thirteen years. The Hall of the
Forest of Lebanon was 44 metres long, 22 metres wide, and 13.5 metres high.
It had three rows of cedar pillars, fifteen in each row, with cedar beams
resting on them. The ceiling was of cedar, extending over store-rooms, which
were supported by the pillars. In each of the two side walls there were three
rows of windows. The doorways and windows had rectangular frames, and the
three rows of windows in each wall faced the opposite rows. The Hall of Columns
was 22 metres long and 13.5 metres wide. It had a covered porch, supported
by columns. The Throne Room, also called the Hall of Judgement, where Solomon
decided cases, had cedar panels from the floor to the rafters. Solomons
own quarters, in another court behind the Hall of Judgement, were made like
the other buildings. He also built the same kind of house for his wife, the
daughter of the king of Egypt. (1 Kings 7:1-8)
buildings and the great court were made of fine stones from the foundations
to the eaves. The stones were prepared at the quarry and cut to measure, with
their inner and outer sides trimmed with saws. The foundations were made of
large stones prepared at the quarry, some of them 3.5 metres long and others
4 metres long. On top of them were other stones, cut to measure, and cedar
beams. The palace court, the inner court of the temple, and the entrance room
of the temple had walls with one layer of cedar beams for every three layers
of cut stone. (1 Kings 7:9-12)
temple was completely destroyed in 587 BC by the Babylonians when they captured
Jerusalem. When the Persian Empire took over from the Babylonian Empire, King
Cyrus allowed the Hebrews to return to Jerusalem and build a second temple
on the site of the first. King Herod the Great, who ruled from 37-4 BC, restored
the second temple. This is why he restored the temple treasures.
One of the main
activities of tourists throughout the ages has always been looking at and
admiring ancient buildings. On the other hand, locals all over the Middle
East generally find their old buildings embarrassing - signs of an old-fashioned
past theyd prefer to forget. They like to look at and admire new, modern
buildings, which they regard as signs of progress. Jesus disciples,
therefore, during their last visit to Jerusalem with Jesus, admired Herods
recently renovated second temple:
and was going away from the temple when his disciples came to him to call
his attention to its buildings. "Yes," he said, "you may well
look at all these. I tell you this: not a single stone here will be left in
its place; every one of them will be thrown down." (Matthew 24:1-2)
As Jesus was
leaving the temple, one of his disciples said, "Look, teacher! What wonderful
stones and buildings!" Jesus answered, "You see these great buildings?
Not a single stone here will be left in its place; every one of them will
be thrown down." (Mark 13::1-2)
Some of the
disciples were talking about the temple, how beautiful it looked with its
fine stones and the gifts offered to God. Jesus said: "All that you see
- the time will come when not a single stone here will be left in its place,
every one will be thrown down." (Luke 21:5-6)
As He predicted,
the second temple was razed to the ground. It was completely destroyed by
the Romans in 70 AD and has never been rebuilt. All that remains is the foundation
of the west wall. Jews go there to lament the second temples destruction
so it is now known as the wailing wall. The blocks of stone are huge, following
the Phoenician model.
2. Lecture on the Logistics of King Solomon's Temple
lecture was intended for delivery to Freemasons’ Lodges, in aid of
various charities. As you may know, Freemasons are renowned worldwide
for their Charitable Giving, and for their unstinting assistance to
Good Causes. Don’t believe those old wives’ tales of conspiracies
and bizarre ritualistic goings-on. These stories do make us laugh!
those who have never travelled to the Middle East, I refer you to the
map. Please study it whilst I point out a few things you may find of
will see immediately that it is a map of the Holy Land, as it was in
the Good Old Days, and pretty much as it is now.
the upper left hand quadrant you will see the Eastern End of the
Mediterranean Sea, which we’ll take as being Sea Level, which is
surprisingly relevant in this part of the world.
a quarter of the way down the centre of the page, you will observe
the Sea of Galilee, which is also known as the Lake of Galilee, or
Lake Tiberius, or the Sea of Chinnereth. Whatever you want to call
it, it is the most beautiful blue lake, well stocked with fish, and
an absolute delight to live by. But you may not know that the surface
of this lake is about 700 feet below Sea level. The reason for this ,
is that the lake is part the way down in an enormous rift in the
earth’s surface. This rift is, in fact, the uppermost part of the
Great Rift Valley, which starts in central Africa near Lake
Tanganyika, cuts across the bottom of Ethiopia, up the Red Sea, which
actually sits IN a part of the Great Rift, up the Gulf of Aqaba,
then, after momentarily disappearing at Aqaba City itself, takes a
final plunge down and up in the centre of the area shown in the map.
It is an enormous natural fault in the Earth’s surface, and the Sea
of Galilee sits part way down it.
look half way down the map, in the centre, and you will see the Dead
Sea. Well known to all of us for its great saltiness. The Dead Sea
sits right down in the sump of this trench. Rivers flow into it, but
of course rivers cannot flow out of it, because there’s nowhere to
flow. The evaporation from the surface roughly equals the inflow of
water from those rivers. The surface of the Dead Sea is 1300 ft below
sea level, and is the lowest exposed place on Earth.
look at the top of the page, and you will see Mount Hermon, which
would be of very little interest to us, except that in its foothills
there are many springs, and they combine with the snowmelt to form
streams that become the River Jordan.
newly formed River Jordan runs cleanly down into this valley, and
empties into the Sea of Galilee, keeping it fresh, clean and clear.
the river Jordan comes out at the South end of the Lake, and runs
down to the Dead Sea. This second part of the River Jordan is the
famous part, the part everyone wanted to cross. Owing to the nature
of the soil through which it passes, it quickly becomes turbid and
foul. It twists and turns rather like a snake in agony. Aerial
photographs of it indicate that although the distance from the Lake
of Galilee to the Dead sea is about 70 miles, that river covers about
250 miles, where it twists about so much. It runs in a kind of
flat-bottomed trench called various names, but we’ll call it The
Ghor is, of course, very fertile, and for much of its length it is
densely vegetated. This vegetation is called The Jungle of The
side of this Ghor is an area of flat clay ground called The Plain of
Jordan. This plain contains several sites of ancient towns and
villages, including Succoth and Zeredathah, between which, the Bible
tells us, were situated the foundries in which were cast all the
pillars and bronze items for King Solomon’s Temple. These two
villages are about 6 miles apart, and a mile of so from the River
Jordan. Succoth and Zeredathah are about 800 feet below sea level.
Each is now merely a mound of crumbled dried mud bricks called a
look to the left of the Dead Sea and you will observe Jerusalem, with
Bethlehem 5 miles South of it. Jerusalem is not down in this valley,
but is, as it were, up on the bank at the side. In fact Jerusalem is
virtually on top of a small mountain, at an altitude of 2600ft ABOVE
sea level, so you will realise that to get from Succoth up to
Jerusalem, you need to climb a total of 3400 ft, and the shortest
practical route there in those days was about 100 miles.
look over on the coast of the Mediterranean, and you will see JOPPA,
in Solomon’s time an important port. Now called Jaffa, a suburb of
Tel Aviv. And further up the coast you will see TYRE of which Hiram
was King. Tyre in those days was a tiny island just off the coast. It
was later joined by a causeway which has thickened up, and Tyre is
now just a protuberance from the main Lebanese coastline. Tyre was
what was called a CITY STATE, which meant that it was a little
country all on its own. There were several of these City States along
that part of the coast, and they formed themselves into an alliance
|Click the map to view a larger, clearer version
Phoenicians, the inhabitants of this alliance, were quite remarkable
people. They were, without a shadow of doubt, the finest traders of
their time, and perhaps the greatest traders ever, and Hiram their
King was probably the greatest trader of them all. The tentacles of
their trading empire stretched for hundreds, and even thousands of
miles in all directions.
look at the bottom half of the map, and you will see, stretching from
the Dead Sea down to Aqaba, (or, strictly speaking, UP to Aqaba), the
Wadi Arabah. A long, bleak desert valley of very little interest to
us except that 15 miles North of Aqaba you will see TIMNA,
and just South East of the Dead Sea you will observe FAINAN. Both
small valleys very rich in copper ore.
the valley seems very narrow when you look at a map like this,
nevertheless it is a colossal trench, some miles wide, and quite
amazing to fly over.
let’s start talking about King Solomon and his famous Temple.
of all, let’s look at King Solomon himself. What do we know about
him, and from whence did we learn it? Solomon‘s story is derived
principally from The Holy Bible, which seems to be the main source of
all we know about him. His story is told in two places in The Bible,
in the First Book of Kings, and in the Second Book of Chronicles.
First Book of Kings was written, probably about 450-500 BC, and the
general consensus seems to be that it was written, probably in
Aramaic, by Ezra. About 150 or so years later, The Chronicler (Real
name unknown to us) translated Ezra’s work into Greek, with certain
amendments, additions, omissions, etc.. But generally, both versions
tell about the same story.
logically, if Solomon’s story was being narrated as ancient history
in 450-500 BC, then he obviously pre-dates that time. And so he does,
by a long way. Solomon was King of the Hebrews from approximately
960-920 BC. That is nearly 3000 years ago, 1200 years after the
Egyptian pyramids were built, 400 years after King Tutankhamun was
interred, 1500 years after Stonehenge in England was completed, and 2
300 years after UTZI THE ICEMAN, (discovered up in the Alps with an
arrow in his back) died.
next thing we have to realise is that the Hebrews had never built a
Temple before. Previous to this their most treasured possession, the
ARK OF THE COVENANT, had been kept in a tent called The Tabernacle,
which they had carried about with them during their wanderings in the
Wilderness. Now happily settled, they wanted to build a permanent
House For God, and the remarkable thing is, they hadn’t a clue how
to go about it. King Solomon himself had no idea of how to go about
constructing a suitable Temple. BUT HE KNEW A MAN WHO DID!! Hiram,
King of Tyre. By Solomon’s time the Phoenicians had lots of Gods,
and had built many Temples in which to worship them. In fact, they
had by now developed what you might call a PHOENICIAN STANDARD
TEMPLE, which was three times as long as it was wide, and had two
free-standing pillars at its porch way or entrance.
Solomon wrote a letter to Hiram, and letters in those days were not
written on paper, velum, or parchment, (none of those things had been
invented yet). Most probably on papyrus, or scratched on tablets of
wet clay which then had to be baked. He asked for men, materials, a
design, and someone to oversee the work. No specifications given.
Every subcontractor’s dream! Just think of all those extras to be
agreed to supply all these things, including the main overseer, whose
have been Huram, (he was stated to be the son of a widow of the tribe
of NAPHTALI), and is known in Masonic circles as Hiram Abiff.
was Solomon going to get for his money? He was going to get a Temple
built by Phoenician men, to a Phoenician design, using Phoenician
materials, and the whole thing overseen by a Phoenician!. So he was
going to get what was probably a bog-standard Phoenician Temple, to
an already established layout.
how big was this Temple? Luckily Kings and Chronicles agree that it
was sixty cubits long, twenty cubits wide (there’s that ratio of
3:1), and thirty cubits high. The cubit used would undoubtedly have
been the ROYAL CUBIT, which was just under 21” long, thus the
Temple would have been about 105’ long, about 35’ wide, and 52’
high, and these dimensions would undoubtedly have been the working
space INSIDE the Temple, because walls were exceedingly thick in
those days. We must also realise that the roof may have been a
PITCHED THATCHED ROOF, as there is little evidence yet obtained of
flat roof construction at that time. (Flat roofs are the very devil
to make waterproof, without the sort of sealing materials we have
now). Even the earliest Greek Temples may have had thatched roofs. So
the height would have been to the apex of the roof, and probably not
to the height of the sidewalls. The weight of stones used in
building this Temple would have amounted to about three thousand
tons! This Temple wasn’t going to blow away in the wind.
was nothing, however, in connection with this magnificent structure,
more remarkable, or that more particularly struck the attention, than
the two great pillars which were placed at the porch way or entrance,
a normal Phoenician feature.
did the Phoenicians have two pillars at the entrance of their
Temples? They were symbols of fertility. They were, if you like,
phallic symbols, and when you think about the shape of them, a
vertical pillar with a Chapiter bulging out at the top, I don’t
need to go into any more anatomical details for you to understand
what I’m saying, although why two of them I can’t conceive…
were the Phoenician pillars made of? Probably wood. A tree trunk,
stripped of its bark and branches, a Chapiter built on the top, and
the whole thing maybe painted or protected in some way.
however, had the most brilliant bit of sideways thinking he could
possibly have had. He wanted his pillars to be made out of bronze. Now this must have set Hiram Abiff back on
his heels somewhat, as nothing as ambitious as this had ever been
big were those pillars? Here we have one of those anomalies between
Ezra and Chronicler. Ezra says that they were 23 cubits high, and 4
cubits in diameter, which give us an aspect ratio of 5 ¾:1, which
fits in well with the progression of pillars, as the Egyptians were
building pillars 5:1 about a hundred years before Solomon, and the
the Noble Orders of Architecture, The Tuscan, which were about 7:1,
came about a hundred years after him. Whereas Chronicler tells us
that the pillars were 40 cubits high, and with his 4 cubits in
diameter, that give us a ratio of 10:1, which was not achieved for
another 500 years, and then it was by the Greeks, who’d been
working at it for a long time, so Chronicler got it wrong, and Ezra
got it right.
what does this 23cubits and 4 cubits translate to in terms of
measurements we can relate to? It comes to forty feet high, and seven
feet in diameter.
you ever noticed that, in the English King James version of the Holy
Bible, there is no mention of those pillars being hollow? So let’s
see if they could have been solid, and bronze. It’s very easy to
calculate that the weight of each pillar would have been about 370 tons. Those of
you with any foundry experience will know that you must pour in all
your molten metal in one go, which here means that you have to pour
in 370 tons of molten bronze in one pour. But before you can do that,
you have to MELT 370 tons of bronze. When I tell you that to melt
just one ton of bronze, you need 20 tons of charcoal, which was the
only heating medium they had in those days. Charcoal comes from
processed green wood, and to make one ton of charcoal, you have to
start out with 7 tons of wood. Now multiply those figures together,
and you will see that to melt one ton of bronze, you have to start
with 140tons of green wood, processed down into twenty tons of
charcoal, to do the job. BUT. We have to melt 370
tons of bronze, which means starting with
nearly fifty thousand tons of green wood (probably more green wood
than is in the entire Jordan Valley anyway) processed down into about
7000 tons of charcoal, to do the job. And we’re only yet talking
about ONE pillar! What about the crucibles? Most crucibles unearthed
by Archaeologists can hold about 350lbs of molten metal, which is
just about manipulateable by two very strong foundry men. The famous
Archaeologist Nelson Glueck discovered, in 1939, a used crucible at
Ezion Geber that he estimated could have held about three tons, but
as all its support and tilting framework had long ago vanished, we
have no idea how they could have manipulated it. We, however, need a
crucible capable of holding 370 tons! Maybe one exists now, but
certainly not then. What about the mould that they would have needed
to pour this molten metal into? It had to contain a cavity forty
feet long and seven feet in diameter, and be very strong. We could
construct one now, but there’s no way they could have made one
then. All they had was clay. And even if they had, how would they dry
it out? Before pouring, the mould must be 100% dry.
even if they HAD overcome all these difficulties, and cast this
pillar, let it set and cool, broken away the mould, burnished the
outside, how do they get it from the clay ground between Succoth and
Zeredathah, 800 ft below Sea Level, up to Jerusalem, 100 miles away,
3400 ft up, and on the wrong side of the River Jordan?
will stick my neck out and say that there is NO WAY those pillars
then. Perhaps they were hollow. The dimension of a hand’s breadth in thickness of the wall
has been mooted here and there. Does this make life any easier? I’m
afraid not. Each pillar will still weigh 70 tons. Still totally
unmakeable, by the technology then existing.
it says in the Bible that they DID cast those pillars in the Plain of
Jordan, and that they DID take them up to Jerusalem and set them up
in the courtyard of The Temple, but we’ve just had a quick look at
it, and there’s NO WAY they could have done it.
THEY DID!!! YET THEY COULDN’T HAVE. So how do we account for that
which at first view appears a paradox?
have to remember something important here. Hiram Abiff was nobody’s
fool. Who else would Hiram King of Tyre have entrusted with this
incredibly lucrative contract? Only his very best man, and HA was
that man. He must have been extraordinarily clever and innovative. He
must have been the Leonardo da Vinci of his day, the Barnes Wallis of
Lebanon, the Isambard Kingdom Brunel of the Middle east. He solved
this problem. So how did he do it? (We must also remember that this
era was right at the end of the Bronze Age, and at the beginning of
the Iron Age. Iron was new, expensive, and more difficult to work,
for a purpose which did not require the strength of iron. Bronze had
been around for centuries. They knew all about it, how to mix it, how
to cast it, how to work it. Bronze was the obvious choice over Iron.)
gave it a lot of thought, and then it suddenly dawned on me just HOW
he did it. He made each pillar as a set of segments or rings, which,
when placed one on top of the next, would give the appearance of a
solid pillar. Relatively easy to make and construct, as each ring
could be, say ½ cubit (about 10 ½”) high or thick. Such a segment
would weigh about 1 ½ tons. Each would take about two weeks to make
from start to finish, and we would need 46 rings per pillar,
totalling 92 rings. 92 fortnights is 3 ½ years, and they had 7 ½
years to finish the job, so we know that, technologically, they could
have done it, and the time factor fits in well.
we have to ask a very important question, however. WHERE THE DEVIL
DID THEY GET ALL THAT BRONZE??? We are talking of serious quantities
of bronze, and bronze does not grow on trees. It was an expensive
commodity then, and it is an expensive commodity now. Where did they
is bronze? Bronze is a mixture of copper and tin, in the ratio of 90%
copper to 10% tin.
quantity are we considering? If each pillar in this hollow form
weighed 70 tons, and we have two pillars, we know we need 140 tons
just for them. But we mustn’t forget that incredible artefact
called THE SEA OF BRONZE, which was a huge sort of bucket which stood
in the courtyard of the Temple. It could hold 10 000 gallons (about
45 000 litres) of water to form a symbolical Sea, to prove that God
was not only God of the land,
also of the Sea. It is described in such detail in The Bible that we
can easily draw it out and calculate the weight of bronze used in its
manufacture (It stood on twelve cast bronze oxen, three each facing
East, West, North and South), and it was approximately forty tons.
Then there were the lavers, their stands and trolleys, the basins,
shovels and flesh hooks, all made of bronze. The total of bronze must
have been about 200 tons. Maybe the greatest single collection of
bronze in any one place in the whole of history.
did they get it? We are talking of 180 tons of copper and 20 tons of
tin. The copper undoubtedly came from either Timna or Fainan,
although there has as yet been found no traces at Timna of occupation
in the tenth century BC. Fainan seems more likely, but we await
about the tin? Here we hit a snag, as there was no tin in Israel, nor
in Egypt, Syria, Libya, Algeria, Morocco, Mesopotamia, Cyprus nor
Turkey at that time.
caused me to carry out extensive research on tin sources, and I found
that there were five traceable sources at that time, but all except
one were not viable owing to distance or insufficient yield or
production, or difficulty of political or geographical access. The
one that WAS easily possible was Cornwall, in England. Although a
fair distance, the journey would have been carried out with the
relatively sophisticated boats they apparently had in those days. And
anyway, the Phoenicians, who owned and manned the boats, would have
been pleased to take that opportunity to carry out, not only a
tin-gathering trip, but also to do a lot of lucrative trading whilst
doing so! Remember, they were the Mediterranean’s greatest traders!
recent years some researchers had thought that the tin came from what
is now Afghanistan, but the distance, the terrain and the passage
through the territory of hostile tribes would have rendered that
journey exceedingly hazardous and costly.
Copper mining in the Timna valley ,and in Cornwall both ceased
finally in 1998, only a few years ago, after probably well over three
thousand years of production.
we know that, technology-wise, time-wise, and source-wise they could
have done it all.
we must ask a very important question. What did Solomon’s Temple
cost, and who paid for it?
know what the labour costs were, because it tells us in The Bible
that upwards of
000 men toiled for 7½ years to build it. These were every type of
worker, not just on the site itself, but also in the quarries, in the
mines and foundries, in the boats, in the forests of Lebanon and in
the fields growing food. If we multiply these figures together to
come up with a number of man-years, we get over a million. Most of
the workers were the equivalent of labourers, and at today’s costs,
what’s a labourer getting paid? Is it about £10 000 ($15 000) a
year? Somewhere about that much. So we have a total labour bill of
£10 000 000 000, or ten billion pounds by today’s reckoning. This
would of course,
included the rebuilding and fortifying of Jerusalem, Hazor, Gezer and
Megiddo, all these works being described in the Bible as being
carried out by Solomon at that time. Also being included were the
construction of Solomon’s Palace, and that of his favourite wife,
the daughter of the Egyptian Pharoah. Where did this money come from?
(Here I should say that money wasn’t invented until about 700 BC,
so we’re talking figuratively here, all was done by barter). Well,
it came from the People of Israel, as no-one else is going to pay
their bills for them. The population of Israel was about one million
people at that time, the Bible tells us so, and thus we are talking
about an EXTRA tax burden of about £10 000 for every man, woman and
child in Israel at that time. Even spread over the 7 ½ years, it
still comes to over £1 300 a year. It must have hurt them, but it
WAS all paid. Where did the money go? Well, we know where it went,
don’t we? It went into the pockets of those very clever, shrewd
people called The Phoenicians. They weren’t the Med’s greatest
traders for nothing! Hiram King of Tyre must have done very well
indeed out of it all. No wonder foreign peoples got so jealous of the
Phoenicians that in the end they invaded them and took all they had.
I suppose that finally we must ask whether Solomon was such a wise
King after all? Was he the epitome of wisdom? Was he the wisest man
who ever lived? It seems to me that Hiram of Tyre saw him coming, so
who WAS the wisest King?
Copyright, David Skinner.
in this site do not necessarily represent Phoenicia.org nor do they necessarily reflect those of the various authors, editors, and owner of this site. Consequently, parties mentioned or implied cannot be held liable or responsible for such opinions.