Jerusalem, in stone and imagination, is unique as a holy city of the world's three monotheistic religions, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. The most relevant primary texts describing the physical features of Jerusalem's cities include the Hebrew Bible, the New Testament, Roman and Late Antique Jewish sources and Christian writings. Jerusalem dramatically changed during the eighth century BCE, coinciding with abundant archaeological and textual evidence testifying to its significance as a major cultic and urban center with a large residential population, perhaps for the first time in the city's history. More recently, salvage excavations have uncovered additional impressive remains dating to the late Second Temple period. Herod's monumental buildings have left their imprint on Jerusalem's landscape and topography; remnants are still visible today. First and foremost Byzantine Jerusalem was a city of pilgrimage, whose main function was devoted to the cult of holy places.