Marwan undergrounded mosque

El-Marwani mosque

Solomon's Stables (Template:He) is the popular name for an underground vaulted space on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, Israel. Solomon's Stables are located under the southeastern corner of the Temple Mount, 12½ metres below the courtyard and feature twelve rows of pillars and arches.


The structure has been called Solomon's Stables since Crusader times. It is unlikely to date as far back as Solomon, and may have been built by Herod the Great, who leveled and substantially extended the Temple Mount platform. The theory is that arches would decrease pressure on the supporting walls and elevate the platform above the bedrock. According to the Mishna, however, the arches were built to keep the buildings on the mount from being defiled by "graves in the depth." (Mishnah, Tohoroth, 3).[1]

According to Islamic tradition, Caliph Marwan I transformed the vaulted structure into a series of usable rooms. It is believed to have been a place of worship and became known as the el-Marwani mosque. In 1996, the waqf built a modern mosque there, with a capacity for 7,000 worshippers.

In 1997, the waqf began digging up the southeastern area of the Temple Mount, drawing criticism from archaeologists, who said that archaeological finds were being damaged in the process and the excavations weakened the stability of the Southern Wall. . The soil removed from the dig was dumped near the Mount of Olives and a salvage operation was undertaken in order to sift through the debris for archaeological remains. Many important finds have turned up, backing claims that the waqf embarked on the project with the aim of destroying evidence of any Jewish presence on the Temple Mount.[2]

In popular culture, the area has become associated with the Knights Templar due to a claim in the 2003 novel The Da Vinci Code that the order maintained its headquarters here.



Coordinates: 31°46′34.92″N 35°14′13.24″E / 31.7763667°N 35.2370111°E / 31.7763667; 35.2370111ar:المصلى المروانيmk:Соломонови коњушници ru:Мечеть Эль-Марвана

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