In 1903 Theodor Herzl (1860-1904) wrote in his will: "I wish to be buried in a metal coffin next to my father, and to remain there until the Jewish people will transfer my remains to Eretz Israel. The coffins of my father, my sister Pauline, and of my close relatives who will have died until then will also be transferred there".
Herzl died a year later and was interred in Vienna.
Forty-five years later, in 1949, Herzl`s remains and those of his relatives were brought to Israel and reinterred in a burial site in Jerusalem, whose location had been determined by a special state commission. Sixty-three entries were submitted in the competition for the design of the national pantheon. Joseph Klarwein`s proposal was chosen, and the site was accordingly laid out in 1951. From then on, Mount Herzl has served as the national cemetery, where Zionist leaders, the presidents of Israel, prime ministers, and Speakers of the Knesset are laid to rest.
On the northern slope of Mount Herzl is the military cemetery of Jerusalem, and to the west is Yad Vashem, which commemorates the Holocaust. The tour of Mount Herzl is a visit to a cemetery and a memorial site. On the way we pass the Herzl Museum with its exhibition of the life and activity of the Zionist leader. The display centers around Herzl`s study, which was reconstructed with its original furniture.
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