Conrad Schick (1822-1901) was a German architect, archaeologist and Protestant missionary who settled in Jerusalem in the late nineteenth century.[1]


Thabor House, Jerusalem

Tabor House, Jerusalem

Conrad Schick was born in Bitz, Baden-Württemberg, Germany. At the age of 24, after completing his studies in Basel, he settled in Palestine.[2]

The house that Schick built for his family, Tabor House, or Beit Tabor, on Jerusalem's Hanevi'im Street, is still standing.[3] The name of the house is based on a verse from Psalms (89:12): "The north and the south, Thou has created them; Tabor and Hermon shall rejoice in Thy name." The facade is decorated with carvings of palm leaves and the Greek letters Alpha and Omega, symbolizing the beginning and the end.[4]

When Schick died in Jerusalem in 1901, he was mourned by Jews, Muslims and Christians alike. He was buried in the Protestant cemetery on Mount Zion.[5] The house was bought in 1951 by Swedish Protestants, and now houses Swedish Theological Seminary for religious instruction and Land of Israel studies.[4]

Architecture and archaeology

German Hospital Jerusalem 07

German Hospital on Strauss Street, today Bikur Holim Hospital, designed by Conrad Schick

Schick was chosen to design Mea Shearim, one of the first neighborhoods in Jerusalem built outside the walls of the Old City. Schick is chiefly remembered for his fifty years of archaeological investigations of Jerusalem and its surroundings. He worked for many years for the Palestine Exploration Fund, publishing frequently in the Fund's journal.[6] In 1872, Schick was permitted to conduct research on the Temple Mount, which was generally off limits to foreigners. The wooden model he built was exhibited in the Turkish pavilion at the Vienna World Exposition of 1873 and later sold to a museum in Switzerland.[7] In 1887, Schick designed the Hansen Government Hospital for Lepers, a landmark building that can still be seen today near the Jerusalem Theater.[7] Other buildings designed by Schick are St. Paul's Anglican Chapel and the Deaconess Hospital (today a wing of Bikur Holim Hospital), both on Hanivi'im Street.[8]

Biblical models

Model of Jewish temple by Schick

Models of temple mount by Conrad Schick

Schick constructed a notable series of Replicas of the Jewish Temple. His replica of the biblical Tabernacle was visited in Jerusalem by several crowned heads of state, toured the United Kingdom, and exhibited at the 1873 Vienna World's Fair. It was purchased by the King of Württemberg, who awarded Schick a knighthood in recognition of his work. Schick built a replica of the Temple Mount and Dome of the Rock for the Ottoman Sultan. His final model, in four sections, each representing the Temple Mount as it appeared in a particular era, was exhibited at the St. Louis World's Fair of 1904.[9]

Two models of the temple mount created by Schick are located in the basement of the Schmidt school for girls in Nablus road, just outside of the old city of Jerusalem near Nablus gate. One model shows the temple mount as it was in the 1870s, based on his research. The other is a somewhat fanciful model of the Jewish temple.


The Conrad Schick Library in the Old City of Jerusalem is named for him.[10]


  1. British mission to the Jews in nineteenth-century Palestine, by Yaron Perry, Routledge, 2003, p. 110
  2. Remembering Conrad Schick
  3. Rehov Hanevi'im - Around the houses, Jerusalem Post
  4. 4.0 4.1 Jerusalem architecture
  5. British mission to the Jews in nineteenth-century Palestine, Yaron Perry, Routledge, 2003, p. 110
  6. Measuring Jerusalem: the Palestine Exploration Fund and British interests in the Holy Land, John James Moscrop, Continuum International Publishing Group, 2000, p. 101
  7. 7.0 7.1 Life of Conrad Schick
  8. Christian architecture in Jerusalem
  9. Simon Goldhill, The Temple of Jerusalem, Harvard University Press, 129
  10. Rare books library

External links

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