Skip to comments.See the First Photographs Ever Taken of Jerusalem
Posted on 01/31/2014 6:39:02 PM PST by marshmallow
Since 1844, millions of photographs have probably been taken of Jerusalem. But these blurry snaps are the very first.
Few places in the world are as revered, fought over and thought about as Jerusalem. For millenia, people have made pilgrimages here, often at great expense and great risk. So imagine for a second what it would be like to hear, from a young age, about this holy city, and then to see the first photographs ever taken of it:
These photos come from 1844 and were taken by French photographer Joseph-Philibert Girault de Prangey. According to Retronaut, they werent discovered until the 1920s, in a store room on Giraults estate. Retronaut adds:
(Excerpt) Read more at smithsonianmag.com ...
The lens is surprisingly sharp in the center.
Is there a current photograph shot from the same spot?
Is there any way of determining where that picture was taken from?
Mark Twain in the Holy Land
Mark Twain visited Israel in 1867, and published his impressions in Innocents Abroad. He described a desolate country devoid of both vegetation and human population:
.. A desolate country whose soil is rich enough, but is given over wholly to weeds a silent mournful expanse . a desolation . we never saw a human being on the whole route . hardly a tree or shrub anywhere. Even the olive tree and the cactus, those fast friends of a worthless soil, had almost deserted the country.
He was amazed by the smallness of the city of Jerusalem:
A fast walker could go outside the walls of Jerusalem and walk entirely around the city in an hour. I do not know how else to make one understand how small it is.
And he described the Temple Mount thus:
The mighty Mosque of Omar, and the paved court around it, occupy a fourth part of Jerusalem. They are upon Mount Moriah, where King Solomons Temple stood. This Mosque is the holiest place the Mohammedan knows, outside of Mecca. Up to within a year or two past, no christian could gain admission to it or its court for love or money. But the prohibition has been removed, and we entered freely for bucksheesh.
Looks like the al-Aqsa mosque. Photo probably taken from just outside the walls of the old city.
This was the beginning.....when the Arabs started photobombing Israel.
I googled it up and it looks like you’re right.
However, it looks like the angle for the pictures is different because in every other picture, the tower is to the left of the mosque instead of to the right of it.
Unless this picture was developed backwards.
“If the statistics are right, the Jews constitute but one quarter of one percent of the human race. It suggests a nebulous puff of star dust lost in the blaze of the Milky Way. Properly, the Jew ought hardly to be heard of, but he is heard of, has always been heard of. He is as prominent on the planet as any other people, and his importance is extravagantly out of proportion to the smallness of his bulk.
“His contributions to the worlds list of great names in literature, science, art, music, finance, medicine and abstruse learning are also very out of proportion to the weakness of his numbers. He has made a marvelous fight in this world in all ages; and has done it with his hands tied behind him. He could be vain of himself and be excused for it. The Egyptians, the Babylonians and the Persians rose, filled the planet with sound and splendor, then faded to dream-stuff and passed away; the Greeks and Romans followed and made a vast noise, and they were gone; other people have sprung up and held their torch high for a time but it burned out, and they sit in twilight now, and have vanished.
“The Jew saw them all, survived them all, and is now what he always was, exhibiting no decadence, no infirmaties, of age, no weakening of his parts, no slowing of his energies, no dulling of his alert but aggressive mind. All things are mortal but the Jews; all other forces pass, but he remains. What is the secret of his immortality?”
—Mark Twain, September 1897
What a nice tribute!
For the tower to be in that place in the photo, to the right and in front of the mosque, then the photo was taken from somewhere all the way on the left side of the drawing, about 2/3 of the way up.
It’s not uncommon for photos from that era to be mirror imaged, one such was the reason people thought Billy the kid was left handed!
See the First Photographs Ever Taken of Jerusalem
If you google Al Aqsa minaret, you get a picture of a square tower, the same one that you can see to the left at the edge of the modern picture. I don’t know what happened to the round minaret from the old pic, it doesn’t seem to exist today. I insist, it looks like the picture is showing the Western Wall with the Temple Mount behind it!
Fascinating. Thanks for posting.
God, and their faith in Him.
but that isn’t the only photo
That sure looks like the same shot.
That looks about right. Thanks.
On the drawing I posted, I just noticed there are 2 minarets/towers. One to the left, and one at the bottom. So maybe some pictures are catching different ones?
Eleutheria, what do you think? You live in Israel and go to Jerusalem frequently. What do you think the old picture is showing? I'll take your word as the correct answer.
I’d’ve made mention of Twain’s trip if you hadn’t.
Great info- thanks
At the time, the land was very underpopulated. As I recall, Twain made some comments in the book that were very critical of the Muslim inhabitants.
those pics make the place look old
The old photograph and the new photograph definitely seem to be flipped. (mirror images of each other)
I Don’t believe the original is flipped. I think the Minaret in the picture is no longer there.
Am I a racist hater to want that ugly desolation of a mosque torn down, and the Temple restored, as well as want the Hagia Sophia in Constantinople turned back into a Christian cathedral?
I wasn’t looking at the minaret, I was looking at the angle of the building edge on the Dome of the Rock.
Thank you so much.
I was looking at the Western Wall. If you flip the picture, the Mosque would be on the south side of the Western Wall, but it is on the north side.
I pine to visit Jerusalem!
One Day I would Love to Live in Israel... :(
One day you likely shall!
One day, I would just love to visit Israel and pray at the Wailing Wall.
I will be honored by your presence visiting the Western Wall. G-dly women go there, which you are onyx!
(Serious blushing, I’ not worthy)
I really want to pray there!
Don’t ask me how I know....just don’t stumble into the wrong side of the wailing wall - for your gender. They will give you the business!
I bet I can guess, but I won’t.
I’m just hoping and praying I will one day manage to get there.
God bless and keep you, dearest RFEngineer!
I second that.
“Am I a racist hater to want that ugly desolation of a mosque torn down, and the Temple restored, as well as want the Hagia Sophia in Constantinople turned back into a Christian cathedral?”
It’s okay to hate evil, and the mooselimbs are at great pains to make the world aware of how many races are represented in their blood cult. It’s a cult, not a race.
bucksheesh — I have learned a new word. Thanks.
According to Wiki:
Baksheesh (from Persian: بخشش bakhshesh) is tipping, charitable giving, and certain forms of political corruption and bribery in the Middle East and South Asia.
Origins and usage
Baksheesh comes from the Persian word بخشش (bakhshesh), which originated from the Pahlavi (Middle Iranian) language. It is further traced back to Sanskrit "Bhiksha" or "Bheeks" which has the same meaning.
The word had also moved westward. In the Albanian, Serbian, Bulgarian, Romanian, Russian, Macedonian, and Turkish languages, bakshish or бакшиш means "tip" in the conventional western sense. In Greek, μπαξίσι (baksisi) can mean a gift in general. In German and French, Bakschisch is a small bribe (in Romanian as well, depending on the context; usually employed as a euphemism to şpagă, which means outright bribe).
Thanks for that info.