The Land of Israel constantly reveals hidden treasures, testifying to its rich history and the Jewish people’s deep and long-lasting ties to the land. This time, the discoveries have a seasonal significance as well.
Two archaeological discoveries with highly symbolic value dating back to the ancient Jewish kingdoms of Israel have been revealed on the eve of Chanukah.
Israeli archaeologists this week disclosed the discovery of an ancient inscription of a seven-branched menorah on a large stone slab in the northern Israeli city of Tiberias.
According to archaeologists, the basalt block that features the engraving was originally used as a door to a Jewish tomb between the 2nd and 4th centuries BCE. The menorah-engraved stone was later used as the foundation for a pillar in a mosque, and then as a step in a Crusader-era sugar refinery.
“The stone is engraved in splendor with a seven-branched menorah,” said Dr. Katia Cytryn-Silverman of Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Institute of Archaeology, who oversaw the excavation.
Additionally, the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) this week revealed the discovery of an ancient clay lamp dating back 2,200 years to the time when Judah Maccabee fought the Greek ruler Antiochus Epiphanes.
A mother and her seven-year-old daughter found the lamp during a hike in Israel’s Beit She’an Valley. According to archaeologists, the lamp’s discovery proves the existence of the valley during the Hellenistic period.