This grand Roman gate was named Bab Sharqi, the east gate in Arabic, due to its location on the eastern side of the old city. Dedicated to the sun, it is one of the seven Roman gates of Damascus old city. Bab Sharqi was built in the early 3rd century as the only gate on the old city wall with three passages, and that was during the reign of the Roman Emperor Septimius Severus. The Arab leader Khaled Bin Al-Waleed, the head of the Arab forces, entered Damascus without a fight through this gate in the middle of the 7th century paving the way for the establishment of the Umayyad Empire. Saint Paul also entered Damascus through this gate few centuries earlier, and his conversion to Christianity there has lead this religion spread throughout the old world.