Tarry for the Nonce

August 9, 2005

Ow! My Eyes!

Filed under: News — lmwalker @ 11:20 am

The pool of Siloam has been uncovered in Jerusalem:

Workers repairing a sewage pipe in the Old City of Jerusalem have discovered the biblical Pool of Siloam, a freshwater reservoir that was a major gathering place for ancient Jews making religious pilgrimages to the city and the reputed site where Jesus cured a man blind from birth, according to the Gospel of John . . .

The newly discovered pool is less than 200 yards from another Pool of Siloam, this one a reconstruction built between AD 400 and 460 by the Empress Eudocia of Byzantium, who oversaw the rebuilding of several biblical sites . . .

The excavators have been able to date the pool fairly precisely because of two fortunate occurrences that implanted unique artifacts in the pool area.

When ancient workmen were plastering the steps before facing them with stones, they either accidentally or deliberately buried four coins in the plaster. All four are coins of Alexander Jannaeus, a Jewish king who ruled Jerusalem from 103 to 76 BC. That provides the earliest date at which the pool could have been constructed.

Similarly, in the soil in one corner of the pool, they found about a dozen coins dating from the period of the First Jewish Revolt against Rome, which lasted from AD 66 to 70.

I enjoy archaeology that I can place in context . . . although the saliva thing has always elicited an “ew!” reaction from me.


1 Comment

  1. …although the saliva thing has always elicited an “ew!” reaction from me.

    But its Christ’s saliva…. Its better than Lourdes water.

    I wonder if they’ll rebuild the temple now that they found the pool. *badoomcha*

    Comment by Andrew P. — August 9, 2005 @ 2:31 pm

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