Jerusalem Old City Jaffa Gate 001

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  • Title:  Jerusalem Old City Jaffa Gate 001
  • Description:  Jaffa Gate is a stone portal in the historic walls of the Old City of Jerusalem. It is one of eight gates in Jerusalem's Old City walls.

    Jaffa Gate is the only one of the Old City gates positioned at a right angle to the wall. This could have been done as a defensive measure to slow down oncoming attackers, or to orient it in the direction of Jaffa Road, from which pilgrims arrived at the end of their journey from the port of Jaffa.

    Like the stones used for the rest of the Old City walls, the stones of Jaffa Gate are large, hewn, sand-colored blocks. The entryway stands about 20 feet (6 meters) high, and the wall rises another 20 feet above that.

    Immediately next to the old gate, which is used only by pedestrians, is a breach in the wall, through which the roadway passes. According to legend, this was made in 1898 when German Emperor Wilhelm II insisted on entering the city mounted on his white horse. Local legend said that Jerusalem would be ruled by a king who entered the city's gates on a white horse, so to satisfy the emperor's vanity and avoid the fate foretold by legend, a breach was made in the wall rather than allow him to ride through a gate. However, photographs from 1880 show that the city wall was never continuous at that point owing to a moat around the Citadel / Tower of David that interrupted the wall's path. The moat has since been filled in, leaving the gap today.
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  • Keywords:  Gate, Jaffa, City, Old, Jerusalem
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