'Menorah And Cross' Engraved On An Ancient Water Cistern Discovered By Hikers; Discovery Believed To Be From 530 B.C

By Carrie Winters - 04 Jan '17 19:23PM

Hikers discovered engravings on an ancient water cistern. These engravings are of the seven -branched "menorah and cross." This ancient water cistern can be found in Israel.

According to a report, these hikers are members of the Israel Caving Club. They are exploring the area of the water cistern in the Judean Shephelah. This area is located in the South-Central Israel. As they went along they found a seven-branched menorah and a cross. These artworks are etched in a stone.

One of the hikers, Igo Meroz shares that they already heard about many great caves in the region and they wanted to explore them. The team decided to check on these caves and as they moved along they encountered the engravings.

These engravings were examined by Archaeologist Sa'ar Ganor of the Israel Antiquities Authority and he noted that these engravings had been there since the Second Temple period. This was sometime 530 B.C. and 70 A.D.

The water cistern has niches carved on to them. Ganor explains that these may have been used for raising doves at that time. Ganor further notes that the cross may have been from the fourth Century A.D. The settlements near the water cistern are also reported to date during the Roman and Byzantine Periods.

Meanwhile, as the hikers realized that these engravings were of a menorah and cross they have been excited about their discovery. They right away reported their discovery to the Israel Antiquities Authority. The menorah engraving depicts a three-footed base.

The candelabra are also evident in these engravings. The officials in Israel have kept the location in confidentiality. This is also to protect the hikers and they want to explore the water cistern deeper. It is indicated in the same report that finding a work of art during the Hanukkah holidays is special and rare.

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