MembersBaron Edmond Rothschild and the Third Temple

Did you know that a prophecy-minded Jewish philanthropist apparently tried to build the Third Temple over 100 years ago?

By Tsvi Sadan | | Topics: Third Temple
The Third Temple was very nearly built more than 100 years ago.
Photo: Historical Archive of Zichron Ya'akov

A rather obscure news item resurfaced some time ago on the Internet provides opportunity to address the matter of Baron Edmond de Rothschild and his efforts to build the Third Temple.

The news item relates to an extremely rare book published in 1889, The Temple of Jerusalem and the House of the Forest of Lebanon. The book is the painstaking work of two French scholars, Charles Chipiez and Georges Perrot. Chipiez was an influential French architect as well as Egyptologist and Iranologist, among other things. Perrot was an archeologist who also taught at the Sorbonne.

Together, the two produced a comprehensive book that was a daring attempt to produce a kind of a blueprint for the Messianic Temple described by the prophet Ezekiel (chapters 40-42). Aware of the fact that Ezekiel does not give any vertical dimensions, they nevertheless produced an architectural image of what they themselves considered “a blending of idealism and reality.” By that they meant a temple built according to Phoenician architectural characteristics.

  Realization of prophecy

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