The bulk of construction at Masada, of which one sees today, was carried out by King Herod who ruled from 37 to 4 BCE. Barely two generations later, in 73 or 74 CE, Flavius Silva, provincial governor of Judea and the commander of the Tenth Roman Legion, attacked and destroyed most of the structures on Masada. What the Romans did not demolish was razed by the defenders themselves towards the end of the siege. No one is better qualified than Hanan Eshel, with his vast experience in the field, wide historical knowledge and superb scholarship, to tell the full story of Masada.
Hanan Eshel (1958-2010) was a world-renowned expert in the archaeology and history of both the First and Second Temple periods. He received bachelor’s, and master’s degrees, and PhD from the University of Jerusalem. He was Professor at Harvard University and Bar-Ilan University, and also headed research expeditions to Qumran, excavated refuge caves in the Ein Gedi area, and oversaw a survey of the caves along the fault cliff between Qumran and Ein Gedi . His research interests included most prominently the Dead Sea Scrolls, the settlement at Qumran, the Bar-Kokhba Revolt, numismatics and historical geography.