December 25, 2014 Doron

Antiquities Authority finds 1,600-year-old Glass Bracelet with Menorah Inscription

A fragment from a glass bracelet inscribed with a seven-branched menorah from the Second Temple was discovered during Hanukka at an excavation in the Mount Carmel National Park, the Antiquities Authority announced Tuesday. 

According to a statement from the Antiquities Authority, excavations took place there in recent weeks prior to the construction of a water reservoir for the city of Yokne’am, at the initiative of national water company Mekorot.

The dig exposed an industrial region and refuse pits that were part of a large settlement in the late Roman and early Byzantine periods, during the end of the fourth century CE and beginning of the fifth, the authority said.

The excavation’s co-directors, Limor Talmi and Dan Kirzne, said in a joint statement that they had made the findings at the end of the dig last Thursday.

“While examining the contents of one of the boxes, which contained hundreds of glass fragments that had been discarded in the refuse pit, we found to our surprise a small fragment of a bracelet,” they said. “Naturally it was extremely dirty, but still, you could see it was decorated. After cleaning, we were excited to discover that the bracelet, which is made of turquoise-colored glass, is decorated with symbols of the seven-branched menorah – the same menorah which, according to tradition, was kept alight in the Temple for eight days by means of a single cruse of oil.”

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