Masada painting, fortress & palace

Massive Masada, few painting better sense the gaunt, lonely, arid, almost unassailable, haunted and spiritual experience that is Masada.

Masada see through the eyes and senses of a poetical painter.

Masada challenges you physically, poetically and spiritually.

3 million years of evolution, earth quakes, poor farming methods, changing trades and wars have all left their stories.

Masada Sunset as a painting symbolically includes a setting sun and new moon.

Masada sunset
Masada at Dusk

Massive Masada is gaunt and arid, haunted and spiritual.

Masada at Dusk, 51 x 61 cm (20″ x 24″) yours for £ 1,100.

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The story of Masada for nearly 13 centuries was considered a colourful myth, an impregnable fortress and hanging palace lost in time.

Masada paintings
Masada painting poetry, the hanging palace

I painted Masada after a long day well spent exploring this site and it’s surroundings.

Masada is and was only accessible by two paths lead to the summit, one path is difficult, the other path is near impossible.

There is a cable car, however my companion and I wanted to experience The Snake Path assent to better understand how it felt to climb the mountain that is Masada.

Masada Sunset (Snake Path, detail 3)

Masada remained uninhabited until in 1828 when Christian scholars disguised as Muslims identified the site so rediscovered Masada.

Excavations began soon after the founding of the new state of Israel (1948), in 1953 and then amazingly, voices from the darkness began to speak.

Not literally speaking but through archaeology and essence they very clearly confirm the written words of Josephus Flavius for those who are able to sense, to hear.

An unforgettable experience is to explore Masada then sit and quietly ponder how you would react in the sort of situation they faced on their last day.

Today, young Israelis serving in the IDF take an oath on Masada, swearing Masada will never again fall to a conqueror.

By 73 AD the majority of the native Jewish population had been enslaved and or forcibly expelled following a 3 year war trying to free themselves from Roman tyranny.

Masada stood alone unconquered, the last Jewish stronghold.

Masada awesome painting in Israel
Masada painted after exploring the location.

Masada at Dusk, 51 x 61 cm (20″ x 24″) yours for £ 900.

order easily

You can own this painting from here easily, safely using £ bank to bank or by credit card Purchase Now via PayPal in any currency or in instalments by arrangement, contact us.

There is a near incredible account of that war written by a Jewish leader who survived and to the credit of the Romans, his book was approved by the Emperor Augustus who’s son Titus destroyed Jerusalem and very violently suppressed the uprising in A. D. 73.

The author Titus Flavius Josephus, born Joseph ben Matityahu, (יוסף בן מתתיהו, Yosef ben Matityahu), priest, warrior, scholar, wrote “The Jewish War“.

  • Josephus The Jewish War is a ‘Penguin Classic’  ISBN 0 14 044 420 3
  • Masada, Herod’s Fortress and the Zealots Last Stand by Yigaerl Yadin, published 1966, ISBN 0 297 787934 is an account of the first International team excavations of the site by a leading archaeologist.

This is these days much on the internet about the site and other books.

Israel was part of the Roman and later the Byzantine Empires, a region they called for administrative purposed by the Roman name Province of Syria Palestine.

A Land of ‘milk and honey’ the Bible recounts yet for near 1300 years the land lay in ruins.

Fortress Masada Paintings in detail
Masada at dusk

Masada is an unforgettable experience for many reasons.

You can see for yourself the engineering works and camps the Romans built, a huge effort to take the fortress.

On the last night before conquest all the defenders, men, women and children (913) bar a very few committed suicide rather than become slaves.

Josephus recounts their last hours, how they burnt their military supplies but left the food and water intact to show the Romans they could have stayed on Masada for many more years.

One can still see much of the fortress, palace, the Roman camps and a huge ramp the Romans built using Jewish slave labour.

Josephus described the siege in great detail and for centuries academics threw it into the bin of myths, pooh pooed his account as to incredible.

Time has proven Josephus an honest man.

On a lighter note, there are very fine views of the Dead Sea valley from the summit of Masada, a recommended experience.

Masada is a great place to watch the sun rise over the Jordanian mountains and set over the Judean mountains.

Today Israeli conscripts (meaning late teen age boys and girls) complete their military training with a visit to Masada and an oath ‘Masada will never fall again’.

In recent years the water consumption of a growing regional population is causing the Dead Sea to shrink dramatically.

The innovative Israelis plan to pipe water from the Med to conserve this unique environment, a world heritage treasure if ever there was one.

Three thousand + years back, in the South the land was rich and fertile, the site of numerous towns.

Sodom and Gomorrah being the most famous, made rich by producing asphalt products from naturally occurring bitumen.

The Dead Sea Valley

The Dead Sea Valley is the site of numerous towns old and new, Sodom, Gemorrah and Jericho being the most famous and has been inhabited from earliest times.

The dead sea Valley is a part of the Great African Rift Valley thus subject to occasional earth quakes.

Even the air has a different feel.

The Dead Sea region continues to this day to produce more surprises as scientist, archaeologists and the rest of us explore it’s mysteries.

Israel in general is an amazing country, the Dead Sea being but one of it’s memorable surprises.

The Dead Sea

The ‘Dead Sea‘ is despite it’s morbid name, a very interesting place to discover. As of 2019, the lake’s surface is 430.5 meters (1,412 ft) below sea level, the Dead Sea is at 304 m (997 ft) the deepest hypersaline lake in the world.

Approximately three million years ago as the African and Arabian tectonic plates embarked on their slow separation, they created The Great African Rift Valley, a deep depression formed within the Earth’s crust.

The Dead Sea also known as The Salt Sea is the lowest habitable environment on our planet and first invested by mankind a very, very, long time ago, probably when early Stone Age peoples moved from Africa, maybe earlier Neanderthals and others of our cousins.

Situated within the Jordan Rift Valley, a region marked by seismic activity and tectonic plate movements.

This is a mineral rich environment particularly noted in earliest aeons for salts and bitumens.

The mineral-rich mud, abundant along the Dead Sea’s shores, remains a magnet for health-conscious tourists. This mud, high in calcium and other minerals due to the lake’s intense evaporation process, is sought after for its skin rejuvenation properties. It has qualities that include providing relief for skin conditions such as psoriasis and eczema, thereby enhancing overall skin health.

You can find much more about it on the Internet however there is no substitute for experiencing the Dead Sea valley and Israel in general.

Palestine & Philistine

The name Palestine is thought to derive from the Philistines; a warlike sea people of European ancestry, probably Greek related who settled the coast around Gaza and Ashkelon about 1200 B.C.E., hence Philistine more usually pronounced Palestine.

The Philistines are mentioned in the Bible and in Egyptian records as sea raiders, savages who settled the district of Ashkelon & Gaza.

Arab Islamic invaders turned the entire region into desert and waste land while forbidding ‘non believers’ to live there, making pilgrimage hazardous, expensive and generally very difficult.

That caused The Crusades.

A few Jews never left (10% of the population), their descendants still live in the land, we have a special name for them, Sabra..

A few managed to return and among them was the renowned doctor and scholar Moses Maimonides (Moïse Maïmonide) who wrote “Guide to the Perplexed“.

His book is as fresh today as it was in the 13 th century when he wrote it at Safed in Israel.

Jewish people still sometimes say, “from Moses to Moses there was no one like Moses“.

Jews were not permitted to own property or land, were taxed into poverty and often murdered until the Ottoman Turks began to allow waste land sales at exorbitant prices for Jews around about 1850.

Consequently the Dead Sea region like 90 % of the country slumbered, turned to sand, dust and myth.

To return to the Dead Sea and Josephus; most of the stories Josephus related were not believed until lead by Israeli archaeologists International teams began to verify his accounts during the late 1940’s and 1950’s.

The most extraordinary tale Josephus wrote was placed in the Dead Sea valley; the siege and destruction by the Romans of the last free Jewish stronghold of that period, a siege that ended in 73 AD.

Masada was a mountain top fortress built to protect an important caravan trade route that used to transverse the Dead Sea valley and to protect Israel’s South Eastern frontiers.

Masada as rebuilt by king Herod, built in part as a ‘retreat’ with a luxurious three tier hanging palace that includes fresh water swimming pools

Masada is a World Heritage Site and a very remarkable symbol of a people’s struggle for freedom.


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Masada awesome painting in Israel
Masada painted after exploring the location.

Masada at Dusk, 51 x 61 cm (20″ x 24″) yours for £ 1100.

order easily

You can own this painting from here easily, safely using £ bank to bank or by credit card Purchase Now via PayPal in any currency or in instalments by arrangement, contact us.

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