Al-Quds is the Arabic and
Muslim name of
Jerusalem, meaning "the Holy."
According to Surah Al Israh of the
was transported to "the furthest mosque" on his horse, Al Buraq. Muslims believe that the site of the furthest
mosque or furthest place of worship is the temple mount in Jerusalem, site of the ancient Jewish temple and
currently the site of the al Aqsa mosque. Muslims hold Al Quds to be the third holiest city,
after Mecca and
Medina, and it was
originally the Muslim Qibla - direction of prayer.
The compound of the Beit-el-Maqdes (holy house, as in Hebrew- "Beit
Hamiqdash - meaning the temple) is holy to Muslims. The Dome of the Rock or "Mosque of Omar" which is not a mosque
but a shrine. Next to it is the al-Aqsa mosque. The same ground is holy to Jews as the Temple Mount. The original
buildings were apparently built by Caliph Abd al Malik between 687 and 691, but the original al-Aqsa mosque did not
In the 1960s the dome was resurfaced with gold. The dome covers
a rock that according to Muslim tradition is the place where Muhammad departed to heaven. According to Jewish tradition
it is the rock upon which Abraham sacrificed his son Isaac.
Muslims also revere the remains of the West Wall of the temple,
which they believe is the place where Muhammad tied his horse when he he was flown to Jerusalem in one night.
Timeline of significant events for Al-Quds (Jerusalem)
5th millennium: The "Canaanites" (or Yevusites) conquer
15th century: The area is conquered by Egypt.
About 990: The Hebrew king David conquers Yevus,
including Zion and renames it Jerusalem, Yerushalayim or city of peace. He makes it his capital, and the Ark of the
Covenant is brought to Jerusalem.
10th century: King Solomon builds the temple and
has a wall built around the city
c. 920: Jerusalem is sacked by the army of Egyptian
pharaoh Sheshonk 1.
c. 785: Joash, king of Israel sacks Jerusalem.
c. 701: Unsuccessful siege of Senacharib, king of
Assyria. According to some sources, Jerusalem is nonetheless forced to pay tribute. A tunnel built by Hezekiah, king of
Judea, contains a Hebrew inscription from this time, recording that the tunnel was dug to bring water to Jerusalem in
preparation for the siege, and deny it to the Assyrians, as was related in the biblical book of Chronicles and the book
of Kings. (See
c. 612: Assyria yields its supremacy over Judea to
c. 604: Jerusalem is pillaged by the Babylonians, and
the king Jehoiakim and his court are captured and transferred to Babylon.
c. 587: The Temple of Jerusalem is destroyed by
Nebuchadnezzar. Many of the inhabitants of Jerusalem are deported to Babylonia.
c. 538: The Persians defeat Babylon, and allow the Jews
to return to Judea.
c. 515: Second temple is built under the patronage of
Cyrus, king of Persia.
c 444: Nehemiah supervises rebuilding of the fortifications.
333: Jerusalem is part of Alexander's empire or sphere
320's: Jerusalem comes under control of Hellenistic
Egypt, ruled by Ptolemy 1 Soter.
198: Jerusalem is transferred to Seleucus 1 Nicator, of Antioch.
167: Repressive measures spark a rebellion led by the
family known as the Maccabees. The manage to drive the Selucids out of Jerusalem and Judea. Roman Senate recognizes
Judah Maccabee as a "friend of the Roman people and senate, and places Judea under its protection.
63: Jerusalem conquered by Pompey of Rome, after he was
invited to adjudicate a dispute regarding the priesthood.
40: Herod the Edomite becomes king of the Roman province
4 Herod dies, and is succeeded by his son
6 ACE: Judean kingship is abolished and replaced by
66: The Jews rebel against Roman rule.
70: Vespasian lays siege to Jerusalem; his son Titus conquers Jerusalem and razes
the city, destroying the temple.
c. 132: After Romans under Caesar Hadrianus outlaw
circumcision, a Jewish rebellion is staged by Simon Bar Kochba. The rebellion is crushed by 135 and large numbers of
Jews are killed or exiled. With the advent of Christianity, Jerusalem becomes the center of that religion for a time,
under the Church of St. James.
336: The Church of the Holy Sepulchre is built over the
ground where Jesus was buried according to tradition.
Mid 4th century: Large immigration of Christians to
Jerusalem, and Christian pilgrimage becomes popular. The relatively small city of Jerusalem was soon turned into a
6th century: The Armenian church establishes its patriarchate in Jerusalem.
614: Jerusalem was briefly conquered by the Sassanid
Persian king Khosrau 2. Many of Jerusalem's inhabitants are massacred, and the churches destroyed.
Jerusalem reconquered by the Byzantines.
c. 637: Jerusalem is conquered by the Arab Muslims.
Caliph Abd al Malik builds the holy compound over the ruins of the Temple of Jerusalem, and the place where the
Muslims claimed that Muhammad had ascended to heaven. It includes the Dome of the Rock and the Al Aqsa mosque.
10th century: The current al-Aqsa mosque is built next
to the Dome of the Rock.
969: Jerusalem comes under the rule of the Fatimids of
1010: Fatimid caliph al-Hakim orders the destruction of
the Christian shrines of Jerusalem, including the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
11th century: New city walls are erected, which exclude
the City of David and Mt. Zion.
1071: Seljuq Turks conquer Jerusalem.
1098: Jerusalem is recaptured by the Egyptians.
1099: European crusaders conquer Jerusalem,
murdering about 70,000 and expelling all the Jews. The Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem is founded.
1141: Spanish Jewish poet Yehuda Halevi goes to Jerusalem.
1149: The new Church of the Holy Sepulchre is
1187: Jerusalem is reconquered by the Muslims under
Salah-eddin (Saladin). The "Kingdom of Jerusalem" continues to exist as a small state limited to the coast of Palestine.
1192: Richard the Lion hearted fails to retake
1229: The crusaders resume control of Jerusalem under a
treaty between German Emperor Frederick II and the Egyptian Sultan al-Kamil.
1244: Jerusalem is conquered by the Tatars.
1247: Jerusalem conquered by Egyptian Mameluks.
The only Christians remaining in town were Greek Orthodox and some eastern churches. Jews were allowed to return.
Jerusalem is sacked by the Mongols.
1517: Jerusalem conquered by Ottoman Empire under Sultan
1535-8: Suleiman the
Magnificent rebuilds city ramparts and wall around Jerusalem.
1556: Earthquake in Jerusalem.
1831: Jerusalem is conquered by Egyptian troops of
1840: The Ottomans conquer Jerusalem.
1847: The Latin Patriarchate (Roman Catholic Church) is
reestablished in Jerusalem.
Mishkenot Shaananim constructed outside the walled city by Jews.
1869: Nahlat Shiva
constructed outside the walled city.
1873-5: Meah Shearim
constructed outside the walled city.
1887: A municipality is established for Jerusalem.
1917: British troops take control of Jerusalem,
following the defeat of the Ottomans in the World War I.
1918: Cornerstone of Hebrew University is laid in Mount Scopus, northeast of the old city.
1920: Arab riots against Jewish community.
1921: Arab riots against Jewish community.
1922: Jerusalem becomes part of the
British Mandate for
1920s: Hajj Amin Al Husseini, Grand Mufti, solicits
funds from Arab countries to renovate Muslim holy places.
1929: Arabs riot in Jerusalem and Hebron, killing Jews,
owing to a false rumor claiming that the Jews planned to violate the sanctity of the Al Aqsa mosque.
1936: Arabs riot in Jerusalem as part of the "Great Arab
Revolt," committing atrocities against the Jewish community in the old city. British authorities lose control of the
city for a time. About half the Jews of Jerusalem leave the old city.
November 29, 1947:
UN General Assembly Resolution 181 designates Jerusalem as an international
enclave following the partition of Palestine into Jewish and Palestinian states. Arab states refuse to recognize
December 1948: Arab riots break out in Jerusalem
immediately following the partition resolution.
January 1948: Arabs begin blockade of Jerusalem.
January 16, 1948: Jewish rescue mission ("convoy on foot") to
Gush Etzion, which guarded one of the approaches to
Jerusalem, is intercepted and massacred.
April 9, 1948: Irgun and Lehi raid the Arab village of
Deir Yassin, at the entrance to Jerusalem, and kill over 100 civilians.
1948: Israeli forces take control of western Jerusalem,
as well as a corridor from the coastal regions. Arabs are expelled. Jordan legion conquers the old city of Jerusalem and
eastern areas, expelling all the Jews.
1950: West Jerusalem is declared capital of Israel. East
Jerusalem becomes part of Jordan, when the West Bank is annexed by Jordan.
June 5-77, 1967: Israel occupies all of Jerusalem
as well as all land on the western side of Jordan river in the Six day war.
1980: United Jerusalem is declared the eternal capital
of Israel. This is received with protests from much of international community following Arab pressure.
1981: The Old City of Jerusalem is designated a UNESCO
World Heritage site
1996: Palestinians protest against the construction of a
pedestrian tunnel from the Via Dolorosa to the Western Wall. They feared that it would undermine the Muslim sanctuaries
Dome of the Rock and the al-Aqsa mosque. More than 70 people die in the riots.
September 28, 2000: Ariel Sharon visits the area of the
temple mount. Violence erupts, both spontaneously and deliberately kindled by Palestinian leaders such as Marwan
Barghouti, resulting in a wave of attacks by Palestinians against Jews in Israel and Palestine.
Synonyms and alternate spellings: Jerusalem,
Qods, Quds Al Sharif
Further Information: See
Jerusalem History of Islam and the Arabs Islam