Shelf 3: Judaea After Nero
The Great Jewish Revolt, which had started against Nero’s rule, climaxed in A. D. 70 when a large Roman army under Titus, son of the new emperor Vespasian, finally captured Jerusalem. As punishment, the Temple of Jahweh was destroyed. Unrest would lead to the city becoming a Roman colony, from which Jews were barred after the Bar Kochba revolt in A.D. 132-135. Later, religious practices in Judaea changed dramatically after emperor Constantine re-unified the empire, legalized Christianity, and in 330 built a new capital at the old Greek city of Byzantium. The ancient Greco-Roman-Near Eastern polytheism slowly faded away. The Christian capital was called Constantinople, but historians refer to the new civilization as Byzantine. In Judaea, this society would end with the surrender of Jerusalem to Muslim Arabs in 637. Since then, Judaea has been populated by Jews, Christians and Muslims, and each group further divided quarreling over scriptural interpretation and religious sites.