This article deals with the historical and biblical Zion of Israel. For other uses of the term, see Zion (disambiguation)

Zion originally was the specific name given to a Jebusite fortress near modern-day Jerusalem that was conquered by David. The original fortress was located on the hill in southeastern Jerusalem.

Zion, or Sion, is an archaic term that originally referred to a section of Jerusalem, which, by Biblical definition, is the City of David. After the death of King David, the term Zion came to refer to the hill in Jerusalem which was the site of Solomon's temple. Later, Zion came to refer to temple and the temple grounds themselves. Beyond that, Zion is used to symbolize Jerusalem and the Promised Land of God to come, in which God dwells among his chosen people.

Modern use

The longing for Zion of the Babylonian Hebrews was adopted as a metaphor by Christianized Black slaves. Thus, Zion symbolizes a longing, by wandering peoples, for a safe homeland. This could be a literal place such as in Ethiopia for Rastafarians for example. For others, it has taken on a more spiritual meaning —a safe spiritual homeland, like in heaven, or a kind or peace of mind in one's present life.

Zion is a city that Mormons believe will be built in Jackson County Missouri, and a common reference to both North and South America. In a spiritual sense, Zion is regarded by Mormons as an utopian society of "pure in heart" believers where all citizens have all things in common.

See also: Zionism