God's Gold: A Quest for the Lost Temple Treasures of Jerusalem

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9780060853990: God's Gold: A Quest for the Lost Temple Treasures of Jerusalem
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In 70 AD, the Roman emperor Vespasian and his son Titus plundered the great Temple of Jerusalem, claiming for themselves a priceless hoard. The golden candelabrum, silver trumpets, the bejeweled Table of the Divine Presence—the central icons of the Jewish faith—were cast adrift in Mediterranean lands and exposed to centuries of turbulent history and the rule of four different civilizations. Only an intriguing trail of clues remains to betray the treasure's ever-changing destiny—a trail eminent archaeologist Dr. Sean Kingsley has followed on one of the most remarkable quests of this or any other age: the search for the final resting place of God's gold.

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About the Author:

Sean Kingsley is a London-based archaeologist with fifteen years' experience running excavations and surveys, from Montenegro to Israel. He is the author of six books, the managing editor of Minerva: The International Review of Ancient Art and Archaeology, and a visiting fellow at the Research Center for Late Antique and Byzantine Studies at Reading University.

From Publishers Weekly:

In this fast-paced tale that is part detective story, part travelogue and adventure story, historian Kingsley, editor of the archeology journal Minerva, hunts for one of the most sought after ancient treasures: a golden candelabrum, a pair of silver trumpets and the jewel-covered Table of Divine Presence carried away from the Temple in Jerusalem by Vespasian in A.D. 70. Many believe that these pieces, long since disappeared, lie buried beneath the Temple Mount, while others are convinced that they are buried under the Vatican. Relying on the ancient historians Josephus and Procopius, Kingsley traces the trail of the treasure as best he can. Many in modern times have tried and failed to find the treasure, including John Allegro, the Dead Sea Scrolls expert, who used the now-famous Copper Scroll as his guide in the caves at Qumran. At the end of his travels, Kingsley visits the monastery of Saint Theodosius in the Judean wilderness, where he believes Byzantine patriarch Modestus may have hidden the treasures in the seventh century after carrying them away from the Church of the Holy Sepulchre to protect them from Muslim invaders. Although we will likely never find the Temple treasure, Kingsley's bracing tale of religious intrigue grips the imagination. 16 pages of b&w photos. (June 12)
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