February 21, 2007

Today in Jewish History - Adar 3

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In 350 BCE, the building of the second Holy Temple was completed in Jerusalem, as recorded in the biblical Book of Ezra (6:15). The re-building of the Temple had begun under Cyrus when the Persians first took over the Babylonian empire. The re-building was then interrupted for 18 years, and resumed with the blessing of Darius II, the Persian king whom is said to be the son of Esther. The Second Temple lacked much of the glory of the First Temple: There was no Ark of the Covenant, and the daily miracles and prophets were no longer part of the scenery. The Second Temple would stand for 420 years, before being destroyed by the Romans in 70 CE.