In the heart of Jerusalem’s walled Old City stands an immense church of more than 30 chambers and chapels. The Holy Sepulchre Church is one of the most complex buildings in the world; renovated and repaired many times since its construction in the fourth century, it now incorporates Byzantine, Crusader and 19th-century Greek architecture.
The most recent restoration and the archaeological excavations that went hand in hand with it have now been published by Virgilio C. Corbo, O.F.M., in a three-volume final report. “Does the Holy Sepulchre Church Mark the Burial of Jesus?” by Jerusalem district archaeologist Dan Bahat, reviews Corbo’s report and assesses the evidence that this famous pilgrimage site does indeed enshrine the burial site of Jesus.
A specialist in Jerusalem archaeology, Bahat wrote about another Crusader church in Jerusalem in the “A Smithy in a Crusader Church,” BAR 06:02. Former district archaeologist for the Galilee, he has excavated at Tel Dan and Arad and has directed excavations at Beth-Shean, Tel Beit Mirsim and Caesarea. Bahat reported on still another of his excavations in the September/October 1978 BAR (“Did the Patriarchs Live at Givat Sharett?” BAR 04:03).