Today a modern city on the Mediterranean coast with a mixed Jewish and Arab population, excavations on the tel of Acco confirm a history of more than four thousand years when it is first mentioned in Egyptian inscriptions. Conquered in 333 by Alexander of Macedon the Hellenist the city moved from the tel to the coast. Known as Ptolemais, south of Tyre, it was visited by Paul. Through the Roman and Byzantine periods it served as a port .
It was he who, with the aid of the British fleet, ended Napoleon Bonaparte’s attempt to conquer the Turkish province of Palestine after he had successfully conquered Egypt. It was also the British fleet which thwarted Ibrahim Pasha’s attempt to establish Egyptian rule in Acco.
During the Turkish rule the fortress in Acco served as a jail. It is where the founder of the Bahai faith, the Baha’u’llah was imprisoned. His burial place in Acco is the main pilgrimage site members of the Bahai faith. The jail, which continued to function during the British Mandate and in its gallows Jewish members of Etzel (the Irgun) and Lechi were hung, is now anÂ IDF museum.
Text content copyrights: Bein Harim Ltd., Beryl Ratzer (www.ratzer.com)
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