Photographer's Note

"Masada was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2001. Its inscription on this prestigious list epitomizes its outstanding universal significance, which must be protected for the benefit of humanity.

Masada was the last bastion of Jewish freedom fighters against the Romans; its fall signaled the violent destruction of teh kingdom of Judea at the end of the Second Temple period. The traffic events of the last days of the rebels at Masada transformed it into both a Jewish cultural icon and a symbol of humanity's continuous struggle for freedom from oppression.

Built by Herod, king of Judea , Masada was a palatial fortress in the style of the ancient Roman East. The camels, fortifications, and assault ramp at its base constitute the most complete surviving ancient Roman siege system in the world.

The plateau of Masada is located on the eastern fringe of the Judea Desert near the shore of the Dead Sea, between En Gedi and Sodom. It is a mountain block that rose and was detached from teh fault escarpment, surrounded at its base by Wadi Ben yard on the west and Wadi Masada on the south and east. The plateau, 450 meters above the level of the Dead Sea, is approximately 650 meters long and 300 meters wide. East of the mountain is sediment left by the ancient Dead Sea, scored by numerous cracks.

Masada is close to two ancient routes: one cut through the center of the Judea Desert and led to southern Moab in eastern Transjordan; the other connected Edom, Moab and the Arava Valley to En Gedi and Jerusalem.

Masada's remote location and its natural defenses were the advantages that transformed it into a fortress during the Second Temple period."

Previous text from Israel National Parks Authority.

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Additional Photos by Eric Daniels (lipscer) Silver Note Writer [C: 1 W: 0 N: 538] (1333)
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