“For the Lord your God is a merciful God; He will not let you loose or destroy you; neither will He forget the covenant of your fathers, which He swore to them.”
It must be daylight still somewhere, so we are in the final hours of Tisha B’av of 5774, the Jewish commemoration of the destruction of the First and Second Temples in Jerusalem; the former—King Solomon’s Temple—was sacked by the Babylonians in 586 BCE, and the latter destroyed by the Romans in 70 CE. It is a sad day of fasting and observance among Jews for obvious reasons.
Within fifteen years of the Romans’ destruction of Jerusalem, the Arch of Titus, located near the Forum, was unveiled to the Roman citizens. One of its decorative marble relief panels depicts victorious Romans carrying plunder from the Temple, including its menorah, and possibly the Ark itself. Whether this art is journalistic accuracy or grandiose sycophancy or a little of both remains unknown.