Yehi'am Fortress National Park
|Yehi'am Fortress National Park|
Part of the fortress
|Location||North District, Israel|
Yehi'am Fortress National Park is a Israeli national park in the western Upper Galilee on the grounds of Kibbutz Yehi'am, whose main attraction are the ruins of a hilltop castle. The structure is based on the Crusader-time Iudyn Castle built by the Teutonic Order after 1220, destroyed by the Mamluk sultan Baibars sometime between 1268-1271, rebuilt and expanded by the Bedouin ruler Zahir al-Umar as Qal'at Jiddin (Jiddin Castle) in the 1760s and destroyed again by Ahmed Jezzar Pasha around 1775. The ruined fortress, known as Khirbat Jiddin (lit. "ruins of Jiddin"), was later inhabited by Bedouin tribes. The establishment of a kibbutz in 1946 is described on the Kibbutz Yehi'am page.
The buildings include a watch tower with a lookout platform, mosque, and large vaulted hall.
The 1948 trenches laid around the castle can also be visited.
Archaeological finds in the park but outside the castle precinct include the remains of a Roman fort, a Byzantine monastery, burial caves, stones inscribed with crosses and fragments of mosaic.
- Pringle, Denys (1997). Secular buildings in the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem: an archaeological Gazetter. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0521 46010 7.
- Pringle, R. D., A. Petersen, M. Dow and C. Singer (1994). "Qalʿat Jiddin: A castle of the Crusader and Ottoman periods in Galilee.". Levant 26: 135–66.
- "http://www.attractions-in-israel.com/galilee/galilee-national-parks/yehiam-fortress-national-park-%E2%80%93-yehiam-crusader-fortress-protects-settlers-in-1948/". Attractions in Israel. Retrieved 30 July 2013.
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