Grotto of Gethsemane

The cave commonly known as the Grotto of Gethsemane is located to the right of the Tomb of the Virgin, with its entrance at the end of a corridor. Since the fourth century, tradition has placed here the betrayal of Judas. After his agony in the Garden of Olives, Jesus came to meet the Apostles who were resting in the cave, where Judas arrived with the guards.

The cave, measuring approximately 19 x 10 meters and 3.5 meters high, has continued to maintain a “natural” appearance despite the various transformations it has undergone. Initially it would was used for agricultural purposes, with cisterns and drainage ditches for water and perhaps an olive press. Beginning in the fourth century it became a rock church used for funerary purposes. During the Crusader period the vault of the cave was decorated with paintings of stars and scenes from the Gospels. The Franciscans took possession of the cave in 1361. Following a flood in 1955.