In regard to our previous post of Herod’s hippodrome, a reader writes, “Intriguing photos! In the top (“dry”) picture, is the twisted metal in the center of the photo just a modern effort to prevent people from falling into ancient holes? Do you know the function of the hole(s) (is it a Herodian well or cistern)? Thanks so much for posting these images!”
Though hard to distinguish in the photo he referenced (See that post here), the metal work is an artistic representation of the horses and chariots that would have been used here in the horse races. Caesarea, Herod’s capital, was a Roman city; the hippodrome with its horse races (and other events) was standard Roman entertainment. This view from the side perhaps helps. This photo I took in 2009.
The driver would have been standing up in the chariot during the race, urging the horses on in their speed. Here is a close-up:
I think the “holes” asked about were just shadows in the photo.
We welcome reader response.
Click on images for larger view.