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Fine’s Colored Arch of Titus Reconstruction Featured in Biblical Archaeology Review


Dr. Steven Fine, the Dean Pinkhos Churgin Professor of Jewish History, has just published “Digital Reconstruction Restores Original Brilliance to the Arch of Titus” in Biblical Archaeology Review, an account of the work that he and others have done on digitally restoring and coloring the menorah panel on the Arch of Titus, located in Rome, Italy. The arch celebrates the military success of the Roman general Titus during the First Jewish War (66–74 C.E.).

“Through technology,” said Fine, “we can imagine the original colors of the arch—and of the Jewish War itself—before they began to fade away into the grays and shadows of historical memory.” Click here to read a history of the Arch of Titus project.

In a related interview with The Daily Beast,  Fine discusses the whereabouts of the Jerusalem Temple’s menorah after the destruction of the Temple by the Romans in 70 CE.

As Fine notes, no one really knows where the menorah and other Temple artifacts went. The belief that the Vatican held the properties was debunked in 2004 (though the myth still persists), but he suggests that the gold pieces were possibly melted down for coinage after the sacking of Rome by the Vandals in 455 CE.