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Encyclopedia > Ketef Hinnom

One of a series of rock-hewn burial caves at Ketef Hinnom ("shoulder of Hinnom") near Jerusalem is the archaeological site in Israel that is most famous for the recovery in 1979 of two silver scrolls that were used as amulets, bearing in inscribed the well-known apotropaic priestlyblessings of Book of Numbers 6:24-26 Note: Tanach quotes are from the Judaica press Tanach. ... Jerusalem (Hebrew: יְרוּשָׁלַיִם Yerushalayim; Arabic: القدس al-Quds; see also names of Jerusalem) is an ancient Middle Eastern city of key importance to the religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. ... An amulet from the Black Pullet grimoire An amulet (from Latin amuletum, meaning A means of protection) consists of any object intended to bring good luck and/or protection to its owner. ... The Book of Numbers is the fourth of the books of the Pentateuch, called in the Hebrew ba-midbar במדבר, i. ...

"The Lord bless you and keep you; The Lord make His face shine upon you, And be gracious to you; The Lord lift up His countenance upon you, And give you peace."

Brief as they are, they rank as the oldest surviving texts from the Hebrew Bible, the first texts with the name Yahweh. 11th century manuscript of the Hebrew Bible with Targum Hebrew Bible refers to the common portions of the Jewish and Christian canons. ... The Tetragrammaton in Phoenician (1100 BC to 300 CE), Aramaic (10th Century BC to 0) and modern Hebrew scripts. ...

Gabriel Barkay, professor of archaeology at Bar Ilan University, uncovered them from a site that had appeared to have been thoroughly looted over the millennia. The tomb had last been used for storing army rifles during the Ottoman period. A partial collapse of the ceiling long ago had preserved an ossuary, and the scrolls were among its contents. One of the larger tombs, which probably belonged to a wealthy family, was found almost intact, with over a thousand objects in it: many small pottery vessels; artifacts of iron and bronze including arrowheads, needles and pins; bone and ivory objects; glass bottles; and jewelry, including earrings of gold and silver. An ossuary is a chest, building, well or site made to serve as the final resting place of human skeletal remains. ...

The larger of the two scrolls was 97 by 27 mm. when it was eventually unrolled, a delicate process that took three years.

The date of the find, which is based on the form of the delicately-incised paleo-Hebrew lettering has been disputed. The tomb had been in use for several generations towards the end of the First Temple period, and continued to be used for new interments for some time after the destruction of Jerusalem in 587/6 BCE. The orginal discoverer and Yardeni suggest a date at the end of the First Temple period close to 600 BCE. Johannes Renz and Wolfgang Rollig, Handbuch der Althebraischen Epigraphik, 1995 , however, argue for a second century BCE date;

See also:

Epigraphy (Greek, επιγραφή - written upon) is the study of inscriptions engraved into stone or other permanent materials, or cast in metal, the science of classifying them, elucidating them and assessing what conclusions can be deduced from them. ... Palaeography, literally old writing, (from the Greek words paleos = old and grapho = write) is the study of script. ...

External links

  • "Jerusalem — Silver Plaques"
  • [http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/Archaeology/jerplaques.html The Silver Scrolls
  • David Barkay, et al., 2003. "The Challenges of Ketef Hinnom: Using Advanced Technologies to Reclaim the Earliest Biblical Texts and Their Contexts" in Near Eastern Archaeologyvol 66:4 (brief abstract)

Further reading

  • Barkay, David, 1986.

  Results from FactBites:
Ketef Hinnom: of the Utmost Importance? - TheologyWeb Campus (3626 words)
When found, these scrolls (denominated Ketef Hinnom I and Ketef Hinnom II) were covered in dirt and corrosion and hadn't been opened in at least 2,000 years.
Ketef Hinnom II: [For PN, 9the son/daughter of) xxxx]h/hu.
Because this burial ground was found on the western slope of the Valley of Hinnom, the walls of First Temple Jerusalem must have extended much farther to the west -- almost four times farther -- than previously thought by scholars on the basis of excavations of the City of David.
  More results at FactBites »



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