In the year of 71, Titus marched thousands of Judeans he took as slaves to Rome. The Arch of Titus commemorates the event. He became the Roman emperor from 79 to 81 CE. As the son of Vespasian, he had taken over command of the Roman army in Judea from his father in the year 70, when the Romans burned down the beloved 2nd Temple of the Jews. Then he destroyed Jerusalem after a 5 month long siege. Jewish tradition is calling Titus "wicked." His mistress was Bernice, a Judean princess. Perhaps because of her, he didn't accede to the demand of the people of Antioch to abolish Jewish privileges there.
|Titus, son of Vespasian, took command of the army from his father in the year 70.|
" Battering rams made little progress, but the fighting itself eventually set the walls on fire; a Roman soldier threw a burning stick onto one of the Temple's walls. Destroying the Temple was not among Titus' goals, possibly due in large part to the massive expansions done by Herod the Great mere decades earlier. Titus had wanted to seize it and transform it into a temple dedicated to the Roman Emperor and the Roman pantheon. The fire spread quickly and was soon out of control. The Temple was captured and destroyed on 9/10th of Tisha B'Av,at the end of August, and the flames spread into the residential sections of the city. Josephus described the scene:Everywhere was slaughter and flight. Most of the victims were peaceful citizens, weak and unarmed, butchered wherever they were caught. Round the Altar the heaps of corpses grew higher and higher, while down the Sanctuary steps poured a river of blood and the bodies of those killed at the top slithered to the bottom.
|Showing his triumph held in 71 for his successful Sack of Jerusalem.|
|Details easier to see in black and white. The seven-branched menorah and trumpets are clearly depicted. It became a symbol of the Jewish diaspora. In a later era, Pope Paul IV made it the place of a yearly oath of submission. Until the modern State of Israel was founded in 1948, many Jews refused to walk under it due to a rabbinical prohibition. The menorah depicted on the Arch served as the model for the menorah used on the emblem of the state of Israel|
The Arch of Titus in Rome was erected by the Senate in honor of Vespasian and Titus. The present one we can see in Rome dates from the reign of Dimitian who reigned from 81 to 96 CE. The original structure did not survive till then.
It shows the goddess of victory crowning Titus. The march of Jewish captives bearing the Temple vessels, the shewbread table, 7-branched candlesticks and the trumpet; the Jordan River and the sacrificial procession is seen in the Arch.
The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia