Tisha B’Av, Jerusalem, Israel 1997

Tisha B’Av, Jerusalem, Israel 1997

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Tisha B’Av, the ninth day of the month of Av, marks the destruction of the ancient Temple in Jerusalem. This event happened almost 2,000 years ago, yet Jews around the world still mourn the loss every year on Tisha B’Av. And what better place to observe this day of mourning and fasting than at the Kotel Ha-Maaravi – the Western Wall of the Temple Mount.

In this picture, people have come from all over Israel to attend services at the Wall. In the foreground, you can see men reading from a Torah scroll that’s kept in a wooden case. Sephardic Jews traditionally use this type of container to hold the Torah, rather than the cloth coverings common among Ashkenazi Jews.