«But, there's another version of this story. The Talmud (Sukkah 48b) includes a description of the aftermath of the etrog uprising: "The horn of the altar became damaged and the Temple service was halted until they brought a chunk of salt and put it there, so that the altar would not appear damaged. For an altar which lacks a horn or a base is invalid."
In their righteous rage, the people ended up damaging the sacred altar, leading to a temporary cessation of Temple rites. Attending priests quickly repaired the damage and restored the Temple service, but the scars remained visible to all: Crude pieces of salt replaced the regular polished stone of the altar.
In the Talmud's account, the priest is still a heretic who has committed a grievous sin. ==> But this version is more nuanced than the Mishna. It shows us that the people's assault on the priest, even if justified, came at a high price.»
Op-Ed: In navigating Kotel conflict, be mindful of ancient etrog riot | Jewish Telegraphic Agency