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M.Besant E.Walter
Jerusalem, the city of Herod and Saladin

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M.Besant E.Walter
Jerusalem, the city of Herod and Saladin
page 67



by the successor of Constantino, and the Jews made one or two local and feeble attempts to rise in Juda3a and in Alexandria. Here they had an opportunity of plundering and slaying the Christians by joining the side of Arius. And then there came a joyful day, too short, indeed, for the Jews, when Julian the Apostate mounted the throne. Julian addressed a letter to the Patriarch, annulling the aggressive laws, and promising great things for them on his return from the East. At the same time he issued his celebrated edict ordering the rebuilding of the Temple of Jerusalem ; the care of the work being intrusted to his favourite, Alypius. And now, it seemed, the restoration of the Jews was to be accomplished in an unexpected manner, not foretold by prophecy. The wealth of the people was showered upon the projected work; Jews of all ages and both sexes streamed along the roads which led to Jerusalem ; and, amid hopes more eager than any the hapless people had yet experienced, tbe work was begun. Hardly were the foundations uncovered, the joyful Jews crowding round the workmen, when flames of fire burst forth from underground accompanied by loud explosions. The workmen fled in wild affright, and the laboure were at once suspended. Nor were they ever renewed. The anger of heaven was manifested in the mysterious flames : not yet was to be the rebuilding of the Temple. And then Julian died, cut off in early manhood, and whatever hopes remained among the Jews were crushed by this untimely event. As for the miracle of the flames, it has been accounted for by supposing the foul gas in the subterranean passages to have caught fire. Perhaps, it has been maliciously suggested, the flames Avere designed by the Christians themselves, eager to prevent the rebuilding of the Temple. In any case there seems no reason to doubt the fact. And now for three hundred years the history of Jeru


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