Frescoes found in Beit Ras
A new Byzantine grave was discovered in Beit Ras, a village north of Irbid, the second largest city in Jordan. The find was discovered while the village was expanding their sewage system and was dated to the early era of Byzantine rule. Despite the graves and sarcophagus there were a number of frescoes discovered across the walls. They displayed humans, horses and the mythology of the region giving researchers a brand new link in the historical puzzle. The archaeological site near the village has been known for decades as Capitolias and was originally a member of the Decapolis, 10 Greek cities on the eastern edge of the Roman Empire that were encouraged to grow so that they could be used to increase their territory there. The important part here is that they were inhabited into the Byzantine era when the Ummayads conquered them. This tomb could reveal interesting facts regarding the time when the empire was collapsing and changing into a different structure of rule under Byzantine rule.
New thinker statue found in Israel
A type of Thinker statue was attached to a jug dated to the Middle Bronze Age, about 3,800 years old. Found near Yehud, a small city about 12 kilometers southeast of Tel Aviv, the statue was discovered along with several other weapons but according to other researchers was an unexpected find. It doesn’t match anything found in the area but certainly stands out as a model of excellent craftsmanship. The time it was dated to was when the Canaanites ruled as a series of cities which shared a similar culture and spoke a similar language. What connections can be made to the statue is up to anyones guess but I hope there is at least some similar work nearby so that we can see a long series when they were popular. Just a thought.
Cemetery & a city in Egypt
A brand new cemetery was discovered south of the ancient city Abydos, a very old an important city during the time of the pharaohs. Although important, the dating for the graves goes back to 4th millennium BCE, when the dynasty of pharaohs started. An additional find was the discovery of an ancient city dating to 5,316 BCE. Each one is highly important as they can give us clues to deciphering the ancient history of Egypt better. Details from the earlier dynasties are scare but with help from both a pre-pharaoh and early-pharaoh Egypt may come into better focus now.
New Roman Prefect of Judea discovered
We can now check off another mystery in history. While exploring underwater near the archaeological site of Tel Dor in northern Israel, archaeologists discovered a large rock with an inscription on it. The inscription is still being deciphered but it has revealed that Gargilius Antiques was the Prefect of Judea sometime before the Bar Kokhba revolt, the last great revolt of the Jews under Roman rule. His name had been discovered on an earlier inscription 70 years ago but since the province was not named scholars debated on where he truly served. In addition to being the longest inscription found underwater in Israel it is also the second time that the word Judea has been found on any Roman period inscription. All of this now begs the question, what else is just sitting at the bottom of the sea?