What this book calls Jerusalem’s sacred esplanade is also known as the Temple Mount (by Jews and Christians) and the Noble Sanctuary (by Muslims.) It has been a sacred site for more than 3,000 years and the source of bloodshed and tears as it was won and lost. Often, its history is told from the point of view of one side or the other, but here, rather remarkably, the three voices come together in one volume. Scholars from all three religions, under the auspices of an Israeli, a Palestinian, and a Dominican institution, write about the history and archaeology of the esplanade in 11 articles and 5 thematic essays that consider the artistic history of the site as well as offering three more personal views on its significance. Executed with care and respect, this volume will be of great interest to the lay audience. The many black-and-white and color photographs (along with maps) will immediately draw in readers, who will come away with an understanding of both the passions that this sacred space arouses and its importance to the Holy Land—and the world—today. --Ilene Cooper
About the Author
OLEG GRABAR is Professor Emeritus at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey. Grabar’s books include Epic Images and Contemporary History: The Illustrations of the Great Mongol Shahnama; The Mediation of Ornament; The Shape of the Holy: Early Islamic Jerusalem; Late Antiquity: A Guide to the Post-Classical World; The Art and Architecture of Islam 650–1250; Mostly Miniatures; and eighty-three articles gathered in four volumes under the title Constructing the Study of Islamic Art.
BENJAMIN Z. KEDAR is Professor Emeritus at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.