Monday, January 10, 2011

An Arab hospital in a German fortress

We have seen some pictures of the Lutheran church at Augusta Victoria on Mt. Scopus; but today, for the That's My World tour, let's walk around the hospital part of the compound.
We can enter through the gate house.
Kaiser Wilhelm II built the huge complex, completed in 1910, naming it after his wife, the Empress.
It was built as a hostel for Christian pilgrims and as a rest home for the German population in Eretz Israel.
Many of the materials were imported from Germany.
It was the first building in the country to have electricity, powered by a diesel generator.
Step in and be greeting by a fantastic doorway!
I had to remind myself that I was entering an Arab hospital and not an old castle in Germany!

Trampling out the evil creatures.
You don't often see gargoyles in Jerusalem!
Here is the back of the building, which was fashioned as a medieval German fortress.
During the last century it passed through many different hands.
The Turkish army headquartered here from 1914 until they surrendered to the British in 1917.
Then it became General Allenby's HQ.
From 1920 to 1927, Augusta Victoria was the official residence of the British High Commissioner of the Palestine Mandate.
After damage from the big 1927 earthquake was repaired, it was converted to a hospital during World War II for the British forces.
From 1948 to 1967 it became under UN control in the buffer zone of Mount Scopus, but was actually a hospital for the Jordanian army.
In the Six Day War of 1967 the second floor was destroyed by shelling between the Israeli paratroopers 55th Brigade and the Arab Legion.
After Israel's victory Augusta Victoria was incorporated into the unified city of Jerusalem, and today it is a 161-bed hospital serving parts of the Arab population.
More photos and information at their website, Wikipedia, and


Angel said...

Very nice pictures :)

Sara said...

That is quite a history in just 100 years! It is a very interesting building with all the stonework and decor.

richies said...

I really like the arched doorway.

An Arkies Musings

Reader Wil said...

Well, that's an interesting building with an impressive history.You know of course that the last German emperor spent the last time of his life in exile in the Netherlands. He was fond of cutting trees in the park around his mansion.

Rob and Mandy said...

It is a special place indeed.

cieldequimper said...

All the best to you Dina!

That massive doorway is superb. Isn't it incredible the paths history takes?

VP said...

This is a fabulous building, full of amazing details and, I imagine, perfectly restored.

Irina said...

Deep history. Great photos. Jerusalem endless and eternal.

Winchester Daily Photos said...

Fascinating building & history

Kay L. Davies said...

What an amazing history, and an amazing building. The open-mouthed gargoyle made me laugh.
-- K

Kay, Alberta, Canada
An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

VioletSky said...

that is a beautiful building. very different fromt he usual, I imagine!

Hels said...

It was indeed fashioned as a medieval German fortress, which I suppose makes perfect sense for a building that served Christian pilgrims to Jerusalem. Gorgeous architecture.

Kris said...

Lutherans in Israel? Who knew?!?!

Anonymous said...

How wonderful it must be if such 'togetherness' could be applied to current nowaday life.

Looks as if it is stronger than time indeed. Great pictures of a much needed journey during my night. Please have a good Tuesday.

daily athens

Leif Hagen said...

Ausgezeichnet! Wonderful architectural details on that Germanic masterpiece!

Kristin said...

Thanks for the lovely tour! Beautiful architecture.

Jørgen Carlsen said...

This was an interesting story - if the walls could tell stories...

Barbara (Xerraire) said...

Interesting building and you captured it very well!

Louis la Vache said...

Kaiser Wilhelm II's great-grandaughter was one of «Louis'» students when «Louis» was teaching English...

JM said...

" I had to remind myself that I was entering an Arab hospital and not an old castle in Germany!"
Very funny! :-)