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Qumran is located on a dry plateau on the northwestern shore of the Dead Sea.

Jericho was captured around 68 CE by the Roman Legion to quash the First Revolt of the Jews. Jerusalem was next, then Qumran, a building of unknown significance -- perhaps a religious retreat or military fortification.

Ancient Israelites hid hundreds of parchment scrolls in the caves of the shear desert cliffs near Qumran. The texts, now known as the Dead Sea Scrolls, represent the beliefs and practices of many different Jewish sects.