A new strings bridge was constructed on the western entrance to the city, as part of the light rail mass transit system in Jerusalem. The bridge resembles a harp, fitting the image of the “city of David”.
Home > Sites > Jerusalem > King David’s harp (strings bridge)
A new strings bridge was constructed on the western entrance to the city, as part of the light rail mass transit system in Jerusalem. The form of the bridge resembles a harp, fitting the image of the “city of David”. This new Jerusalem landmark dominates the skyline of the city.
King David was a talented harp musician and is often illustrated playing the harp. The Bible tells us that he played for King Saul to calm him from his bad moods (1 Samuel 16: 23: “David took an harp, and played with his hand”).
1 Samuel 16: 23: “David took an harp, and played with his hand”
The bridge was designed by the Spanish architect, Santiago Calatrava. It cost 73M$ to build. It was inaugurated on 25 June 2008 with a grand dedication ceremony. The transit system is scheduled to start operation in 2010.
The bridge is seen below, suspended over the main road from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem, dominating the skyline of the entrance to the city.
Click on the photos to view in higher resolution…
A closer view of the bridge is seen below. The bridge is seen at the bottom of the photo, and is held by 66 white cables that are attached to the 118 meters high pole. It allows pedestrian traffic and light rail to pass over the busy junction.
At dusk and night the bridge looks magical, as seen in the following images.
The moon above the bridge, rising at dusk from the east.
The amazing view at dusk – from the sidewalk on the north side.
The north side of the bridge (the picture is rotated)
The moon rising over the top of the bridge.
1 Samuel 16 14-23
This event happened after David was anointed by prophet Samuel to be the next King. King Saul became tormented and bitter and his advisors suggested to bring a musician to calm his spirits. The spin in the story is that, ironically, they summoned David to play the harp, since he was known as a great musician.
“Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren: and the Spirit of the LORD came upon David from that day forward. So Samuel rose up, and went to Ramah.
But the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD troubled him. And Saul’s servants said unto him, Behold now, an evil spirit from God troubleth thee. Let our lord now command thy servants, which are before thee, to seek out a man, who is a cunning player on an harp: and it shall come to pass, when the evil spirit from God is upon thee, that he shall play with his hand, and thou shalt be well.
And Saul said unto his servants, Provide me now a man that can play well, and bring him to me. Then answered one of the servants, and said, Behold, I have seen a son of Jesse the Bethlehemite, that is cunning in playing, and a mighty valiant man, and a man of war, and prudent in matters, and a comely person, and the LORD is with him. Wherefore Saul sent messengers unto Jesse, and said, Send me David thy son, which is with the sheep. And Jesse took an ass laden with bread, and a bottle of wine, and a kid, and sent them by David his son unto Saul.
And David came to Saul, and stood before him: and he loved him greatly; and he became his armourbearer. And Saul sent to Jesse, saying, Let David, I pray thee, stand before me; for he hath found favor in my sight. And it came to pass, when the evil spirit from God was upon Saul, that David took an harp, and played with his hand: so Saul was refreshed, and was well, and the evil spirit departed from him”.
Sculpture of King David playing the Harp – near the entrance to the Tomb of David and the room of the last supper
- Gesher – Hebrew for bridge
- Meytarim – Hebrew for strings
- Nevel – Hebrew for harp
- Commentary on David & Saul & the harp
- What is a harp?
- History of a harp
BibleWalks.com – walk with us through the sites of the Holy Land
Roman Streets <<<—previous site–<<< All Sites >>>—next Jerusalem site—>>> Light Show
This page was last updated on Nov 8, 2008