Home > Glossary

The portable structure used by the People of Israel as a sanctuary during their wanderings before settling in the Land of Israel.

Temple courts
The courts and inner spaces within the walls surrounding the Second Temple; among them: Court of the Women, Court of Israel and Court of the Priests.

Natural ‘steps’ formed on the slopes and banks of valleys, or man-made ‘steps’ that frequently trace the contours of natural terraces. The terraces are intended to halt soil erosion and enable the ground to absorb water. In rocky areas terraces are often delimited by low stone walls, creating plots of land for cultivation.

The Five Pillars of Islamic Faith
The Qur`an lists the following five constituents of faith: (1) witnessing in public, at least once in a lifetime, that “There is no God but God and Muhammad is his prophet (Shahada); (2) praying five times a day; (3) paying zakat (charity); (4) fasting during the month of Ramadan; (5) perfoming a pilgrimage to the Ka`ba at least once in a lifetime (Hadj).

The Isma’ilis
An extreme Shi’ite branch, named for Isma’il, the eldest son of Japr the Richest, the true Immam. The Isma’ilites believed that Isma’il was immortal and would return in the after life as the Mahdi, a leader selected by God. He would then declare a holy war against all heretics and overthrow the existing regimes as well.

Greek for ´cheese-makers´. The valley running through Jerusalem from the present-day Damascus Gate to the southwest corner of the Temple Mount, separating the latter from the Upper City to the west; today - the course of ha-Gai Street.

Back to top