Archaeology and models

The American Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR) writes about Conrad Schick on there homepage:

“Normally, the interior of the Haram was kept out of bounds to explorers, but in 1872 Schick was afforded a golden opportunity to investigate this area. Turkey wished to be represented at the Great Exhibition to be held in Vienna, and the Austrian consul in Jerusalem persuaded them to put on display there a detailed model of the Haram al-Sharif. As Schick related in a letter to Charles Wilson, dated 7 June 1872, he was awarded the assignment of producing a suitable model in wood at a reasonable cost (PEF Archives, Schick 3). He wanted his model to be of value to “students of history and topography” and not merely a display of craftsmanship. It was exhibited with another model in the Turkish pavilion at the Vienna Exhibition of 1873 and later they were sold by his agent, Rev. J.H. Brühl, to the Mission House Museum in Basle, Switzerland, as we are informed in letters from Schick to Wilson, written between 16 June, 1873 and 23 April 1874 (PEF Archives, Schick 7, 9-11). Schick was determined to depict “the substructions (sic), cisterns and all underground buildings as well as those above ground” (PEF Archives, Schick 3). He thereupon set about examining and recording as many of the subterranean features as he was able, during the years 1873 and 1875, and continued making models. Some of Schick’s models may still be seen in Jerusalem at the St. Paulus Hospice, better known as the Schmidt School, which is situated oppo-site the Damascus Gate. By Schick’s own admission, his monograph on the Tabernacle and the Temple, Die Stiftshütte, is largely a commentary on these models (Schick 1896:III-IV, 55).”



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