Western Wall of the Temple Mount
The Western Wall is one of the few surviving sections of the huge Temple Mount enclosure built by King Herod 2,000 years ago. After the destruction of the second temple by the Romans in 70 C.E., the Western Wall gradually became a Jewish holy place "by proxy," and symbolizes not only he mourning for the destroyed Temple , but also the eternal hope of redemption. The western wall is 20 meters high. The seven lower layers, some 7 meters in height, are constructed of huge stones, cut in the special fashion typical of Herod. Additional layers, from later periods , are found on top of those laid by Herod. Further layers from the second temple period are still buried. Extensive excavations have been carried out on this site since the six-day war. The Western Wall owes its significance to its close proximity to Judaism's holiest place, the Holy of Holies on the Temple Mount.