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Masada is a rugged natural fortress, in the Judaean Desert overlooking the Dead Sea.
It is a symbol of the ancient kingdom of Israel, its violent destruction and the last stand of Jewish patriots in the face of the Roman army, in 73 A.D. It was built as a palace complex, in the classic style of the early Roman Empire, by Herod the Great, King of Judaea, (reigned 37 – 4 B.C.).
The camps, fortifications and attack ramp that encircle the monument constitute the most complete Roman siege works surviving to the present day.