Page:Historical Works of Venerable Bede vol. 2.djvu/234

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162
THE MINOR HISTORICAL WORKS

have here mentioned, I have endeavoured to render more intelligible by the following picture.

 (The drawing is wanting in the Manuscripts.)

The soldier's lance also is kept inserted in a wooden cross, in the portico of the Martyrdom, and its shaft, which has been broken in two pieces, is an object of veneration to the whole city.

 

 

CHAPTER III.

OF MOUNT SION AND THE CHURCH BUILT THEREON, OF BETHSAIDA AND SILOAM.

Mount Sion and the church of Bethsaida.Now all these Holy Places, which we have mentioned, are situated beyond Mount Sion, to which the elevated grounds extends as it falls away towards the north. But in the lower part of the city, where there was a temple built in the neighbourhood of the wall, on the eastern side, and joined to the city itself by a bridge which formed a thoroughfare between, the Saracens have now erected there a square building, with upright planks and large beams placed, in the roughest manner, over some ruins of the walls, and they frequent the place for prayer. There is room for three thousand persons. There are a few cisterns there to supply water. In the neighbourhood of the temple is the pool of Bethsaida, marked by its two basins, one of which is generally filled by the rains of winter, the other is discoloured with red water. On that front of Mount Sion, which has a rugged precipice facing the east, the fountain of Siloa bursts forth between the walls at the bottom of the hill. According as it receives an increase of water from time to time, it flows towards the south; therefore, its waters are not sweet, but the day and hour of its springing up are