"Take Our Sins and Go!"

A special bridge led directly from the Temple court to the outskirts of the city. This bridge connected the Temple Mount complex with the Mount of Annointment, and the scapegoat was led over this bridge and out into the desert. On the way, groups of people called "Babylonians" (but actually identified as Alexandrians) attempted to get at the scapegoat. The Mishna (Yoma 6, 4) describes that they were an annoyance: "They pulled at the goat's hair and cried Ôtake our sins and be off with you! Take our sins and go!'" They were eager to urge the priest who led the scapegoat, that he should not tarry or hesitate in the least.



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