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People walk on these ancient Roman ruins every day

These ruins were buried in Jerusalem for centuries ... until people dug them up and turned them into a shopping road.


May 3, 2017 | Latest Photo Prev Next
This road was twice as wide in ancient times.This road was twice as wide in ancient times.Photo: Ilana E. Strauss
May 3, 2017 | Latest Photo

A schoolhouse built around 1890 was one of my Illinois hometown's greatest (and only) attractions. It seems that everything older than 100 years is fenced off and considered a valuable, ancient relic in the U.S. But things are very different in Israel. Civilization started in the area, so the country is full of truly ancient relics ... So much so, that people think nothing of walking on them.

The "Western Cardo" in Jerusalem is the remains of an ancient Roman-Byzantine road built in the 6th century. Its pillars once held up a roof to protect pedestrians from the elements. Shops lined the road, which used to be 24 yards wide.

Weirdly enough, people still use it as shopping thoroughfare. It has no cautionary signs, no ropes fencing off the ancient from the modern ... People just pass through it to get to one of Jerusalem's many markets.

This cardo was buried for centuries, until people started renovating the area in the 60s.This cardo was buried for centuries, until people started renovating the area in the '60s. (Photo: Ilana E. Strauss)

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Related Topics: Archaeology