This plate offers a detailed architectural plan of the Old City of Jerusalem, with a particular focus on the city’s historic architecture and infrastructure. The plan includes ample numbered references to iconic buildings and features within the city walls, which are then specified in the accompanying legend.
Ambitiously, Pierotti’s plan also presumes to delineate the position of various sieges laid to the city over time, from the Assyrians and Romans to the Crusader forces of Tancred and Godfrey of Bouillon. The numbered legend includes the following key references:
(Beginning at the North.)
A. Ancient Synagogue.
B. Pool of Kidron.
C. Fosse of the Ancient City, to the North.
D. Channel of the waters of Gihon.
E. Pool of the Serpents, or Bethora.
F. Restored Pool.
G. Remains of Ancient Jewish Walls.
H. Monument of Ananus.
I. Solomon’s Pool. King’s Pool.
J. Reservoir of Siloam. Pool of Scelah.
K. Pool for Blood.
L. Monolith. Ancient Tomb.
M. Jewish Tombs.
N. Monument erected by Absalom (not the pyramidal part).
O. Golden Gate of the time of Justinian.
P. Gate of the time of Crusaders.
Q. Triple Gate of the time of Justinian.
R. Huldah Gate.
S. Tomb of David and of the other Kings.
Gates of the City of Nehemiah.
I. Sheep Gate.
II. Tower of Hananeel.
III. Tower of Meah.
IV. Fish Gate.
V. The Old Gate.
VI. Ephraim Gate.
VII. Eastern Gate.
VIII. Water Gate.
IX. Fountain Gate.
X. Valley Gate.
XI. Dung Gate.
XII. Steps of the City of David.
XIII. The Broad Wall.
XIV. The Tower of the Furnaces.
XV. Sheepfold Gate.
Gates of the City belonging to Periods before the Time of Nehemiah, and after the Time of Herod.
a. Double Gate, or Gate between the Two Walls.
b. Corner Gate.
c. Sheep Gate.
d. Gennath Gate.
e. North Gate.
f. Gate of the Essenes.
Interior of the City (according to Pierotti).
1. Fortress of Sion.
5. Millo. Descent to Silla. Street of David.
7. Tower Psephinus.
8. Women’s Tower.
9. Corner Tower.
10. Pool of Struthium.
11. Tower Baris, or Antonia, or Citadel of Antiochus Epiphanes.
12. Roman Arch, not earlier than the time of Adrian.
13. Passage called by Josephus Strato’s Tower.
14. Ancient Prætorium.
15. Remains of the Walls of the Prætorium.
16. Pavement, or Gabbatha.
17. Way of the Cross (according to Pierotti).
18. Passage of Herod.
19. Threshing-Floor of Araunah the Jebusite.
20. Altar of Burnt Offerings.
21. Cistern for Blood.
22. Place of the Ashes.
23. Cisterns for receiving the Blood.
24. Position of Solomon’s Palace.
25. Basilica of S. Mary, of the time of Justinian.
26. “Stoa Basilica,” early underground Buildings of Jewish construction restored by Justinian.
27. Substructions of the Aksa of the time of Justinian.
28. Ancient Pillar.
29. Herodian Wall.
30. Foundations of the Eastern Tower of the Bridge of the time of the Maccabees.
31. Palace of the Senate.
32. Bridge now existing (according to Williams and Pierotti).
34. Palace of King Agrippa, overlooking the Temple.
35. Sepulchre of Jesus Christ.
In 1864, the same year that the first British Ordnance Survey of Jerusalem was commissioned, Italian engineer Ermete Pierotti published Jerusalem Explored, a seminal work on the history, archaeology, and architectural history of the ancient and holy city. This work included Pierotti’s notes and insights after years of surveying and mapping under Ottoman authority. The publication was divided into a text volume and a volume of plates. The latter included 63 lithographs showing everything from strategic views, across architectural plans and section profiles, to panoramic vistas of the Old City. Most of the lithographed plates were based either on photographs or drawings made by Pierotti and his team.
The plates were lithographed mainly by Thomas Picken of London and printed by the prominent British lithography firm William Day & Sons.