A recent report from the Franciscans, via their Christian Media Center, highlights recent developments at the Herodium, the mountaintop palace-fortress of Herod the Great that dominates the landscape of the Judean Desert east of Bethlehem.
New aspects of the site and its interpretation (new to me, anyway) include:
- Partial restoration of the small theater discovered several years ago on the north slope of the mountain.
- An elaborate, hi-tech interpretive installation — apparently focusing on Herod’s thoroughly Roman sensibilities — in what they are now calling the “Royal Hall”, which seemingly served as a sort of VIP box above the theater.
- Restoration of the “Royal Corridor”, which seems to have been turned into — just as in antiquity — the main access to the palace itself, via a monumental staircase between tall retaining walls supported by perfectly intact arches.
- A wine-press (not yet open to the public), presumably where Herod’s “house label” was produced…
To view the 5-minute video, follow the link…