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Machaerus is a fortified hilltop palace located in Jordan 16 miles southeast of the mouth of the Jordan River on the eastern side of the Dead Sea. According to Josephus, it is the location of the imprisonment and execution of St. John the Baptist. Originally built by the Hasmonean king Alexander Jannaeus in about the year 90 BC, it was destroyed by Pompey's general Gabiniusin in 57 BC but later rebuilt by Herod in 30 BC to be used as a military base to safeguard his territories east of the Jordan.