Relics of Solomon’s Temple uncovered for the first time in a sealed layer on Temple Mount, Jerusalem

Undisturbed since circa 800 B.C.E., the layer yielded fragments of bowls and shards decorated in the style of the First Temple Period, the base and handle of a small jug used to ladle oil, the rim of an oil storage jar and animal bone.
They may be the relics of a sacrificial rite held in the First Temple built by King Solomon in the 10th century B.C.E. before it was destroyed by the Babylonians in 586 B.C.E. thus ending the era in which Jewish kingdoms reigned over much of the present-day area of Palestine.
Jerusalem regional archeologist Jon Seligman said the find could finally help scholars place Solomon’s Temple at its precise location and study its dimensions for the first time.
Surface relics of the Second Temple razed by the Romans in 70 C.E. survive on the Jerusalem’s surface, including the Western Wall. But no artifacts or structures of Solomon’s Temple were ever found on Temple Mount. Over the centuries, the Muslim rulers of Jerusalem built the al Aqsa Mosque and Dome of the Rock on the holiest site of Judaism, paving it, calling it the Noble Sanctuary and making it the third holiest shrine of Islam. They denied the Jewish Temple had every stood there.
The discovery of the First Temple artifacts occurred by chance when Israeli archeologists were brought in to oversee the Muslim Authorities’ work to replace power cables around the Dome of the Rock at the southeastern corner of Temple Mount. Archeologists and scholars were horrified to find the work was being performed illegally and with heavy earthmoving equipment.
Members of Knesset challenged the Jerusalem municipal authorities, the police and the state Antiquities Authority, for allowing a deep trench to be dug at the sensitive site, instead of having power lines run from the nearby al Aqsa mosque.
However, ironically, the illegal trench served an unexpected purpose: It uncovered the first of the long-sought relics ever found of Solomon’s Temple.

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