The Destruction of the Holy Sepulchre
Today marks the anniversary of the destruction, in 1009, of the Holy Sepelchre in Jerusalem, done under the orders of the the Fatimid Caliph Al- Hakim bi-Amr Allah.
The site of the Sepulchre had been venerated since the early Fourth Century, its location having been determined by St. Helen, mother of Roman emperor Constantine I. A church constructed upon the site had became a popular pilgrimage destination. Al-Hakim's order of destruction was carried out to the point that the church was eliminated down to and including its foundations.
The destruction of the Holy Sepulchre, along with later attacks upon pilgrims, was at the end of the 11th Century cited as the basis for the Crusades. After the capture of Jerusalem the current Church of the Holy Sepulchre (the so called “Crusader Church”) was constructed; it remains in place today although it has been rebuilt in various parts in response to collapses occassioned by fires or earthquakes.
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