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A 3,300-year-old burial cave is found at national park

Posted September. 20, 2022 07:35,   

Updated September. 20, 2022 07:35


A 3,300-year-old burial cave that contains bodies and artifacts was discovered at a national park in Israel. A Byzantine-era mosaic estimated to be 1,000 years old was uncovered in the Gaza Strip in Palestine when a farmer was planting olive trees.

According to the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA), a 2.5-meter-deep ancient manmade cave was found at the Palmachim National Park in central Israel on Sunday. One of the rocks moved by workers on the site was part of the cave's ceiling. The cave contains dozens of antiquities, including red earthenware, kettles, and bronze arrowheads. At least one set of skeletons preserved well was discovered. It seems that burial goods for the dead’s afterlife were buried together along with the body.

The artifacts are estimated to be made in the 13th century BC when Pharaoh Ramesses II was in power. “No one has touched the antiquities for 3,300 years,” Dr. Eli Yannai of the IAA said. “We will be able to get the complete picture of burial practices in the late Bronze Age.”

A day later, a Palestinian farmer named Salman al-Nabahin discovered a Byzantine floor mosaic while digging the ground to plant trees in the Gaza Strip. The mosaic featuring colorful birds and other animals has been well preserved. The Byzantine era, also referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire (395-1453), is known for its architecture and mosaics, which were made with stone or glass at cathedrals or mansions. “I searched on the internet … We learned it was a mosaic belonging to the Byzantine era,” said Nabahin. "These are the most beautiful mosaic floors discovered in Gaza, both in terms of the quality of the graphic representation and the complexity of the geometry," French archaeologist René Elter said.

Eun-Taek Lee nabi@donga.com