Sunday, September 02, 2012

New Jewish town discovered

After more than 100 years of archeological research in Israel, I'm always surprised there's still so much more to discover.  Sadly, today most such discoveries are driven by construction work.

The Israeli Antiquities Authority announced today that a 6th century Jewish town was discovered north of Beersheba, during work on the southern extension of Route 6.

Photo: Skyview,IAA

The archeologists discovered two ritual baths (mikveh) and two large public buildings.  Both buildings had a large platform facing Jerusalem, and archeologists think they served either as synagogues or as a beit midrash, a place for Torah study.

The town was evacuated at the end of the 6th century or the beginning of the 7th century.  A century later a new town was built over the ancient remains.

P.S. After a bit of a break, I hope to get back into regular blogging about our history.  

See here for more articles about our history in Israel.

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abba's rantings said...

"Sadly, today most such discoveries are driven by construction work."

why sadly? what better testament to the vitality of eternal israel!

100 years ago all archaeological work was conducted by non-jews in a land marked by sparse jewish settlement. today it is sparked by jewish construction companies (ok, the workers may or may not be jewish) furthering yishuv ha-aretz on a scale unknown in all of history. (and when the archaeologists are called in, they are jewish.)

Ora said...

It's sad because it means we don't care about our history.

Construction companies definitely have no incentive to pay for it, and would rather bulldoze antiquities rather than call in the IAA. Do we really know how often that happens?

Even when the IAA is called in, when we're talking about a construction project, there's more of a chance that the site will be quickly excavated and then buried under asphalt or houses, instead of, for example - becoming an archeological park.

Anonymous said...

I just wanted to share this as a thank you incase you don't see the comment on the old blog post.

You once wrote a blog post about wedding ceremonies in Israel.

Well, the book which you referred to is now translated into English with some extra never before published notes from a manuscript.

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