""Steven Fine's This Holy Place is a comprehensive treatment of the synagogue as a place of sanctity in Late Antiquity. This book is essential for an understanding of how the synagogue became the central Jewish communal institution and how it served as a substitute for the destroyed Jerusalem Temple during the long period of Jewish exile from the Land of Israel. Fine's mastery of both archaeological evidence and a wide variety of literary sources makes this a major contribution to the field."" --Lawrence H. Schiffman, New York University ""Fine has mastered an unusually wide range of disciplines--rabbinical sources, archaeology, art and epigraphy. . . . His book is thoroughly researched, well written, and engagingly presented. It should be required reading for anyone interested in how this most central institution of Jewish life was perceived and presented."" --Lee I. Levine, Hebrew University of Jerusalem ""I read This Holy Place] with the greatest profit and enjoyment. It is an important contribution to the entire nature of late antique civilization and not only to Jewish studies."" --Peter Brown, Princeton University Steven Fine is the Dean Pinkhos Churgin Professor of Jewish History at Yeshiva University.