Thousands of fragments of pottery, candles, ceramics and figurines dating to the
end of the First Temple were discovered during archeological excavations in the
City of David in Jerusalem, a press release by the Antiquities Authority said on
The City of David is located on a narrow spur south of the Temple
Mount, surrounded on all sides by valleys, near the Gihon Spring and the Arab
village of the Silwan.
The findings were discovered during excavations
conducted by the Antiquities Authority, the most important of which being a
ceramic bowl with a partially-preserved Hebrew inscription, possibly containing
the name of a Biblical figure.
Archeologists Dr. Joe Uziel and Nahshon
Zanton said that the engraved letters date back to eighth century earthenware,
and that the bowl can be traced to the time of the destruction of Jerusalem
under King of Judah Zedekiah, around 586 BCE.
They believe the
inscription may be an address, and possibly contained an offering, given by the
person whose name was inscribed on the vessel, they said.
The writing on
the bowl has been identified as ancient Hebrew script, although the first letter
is missing and the bowl is only partially preserved.
The text fragment on
the piece roughly transliterates without vowels into English characters as “ryhu
This is similar to the name of Zechariah son of Benaiah, the
father of the prophet Jahaziel, whose name appears in 2 Chronicles 20:14 when
Jahaziel spoke prophecy to King Jehoshaphat before the king went off to
“While not complete, the inscription presents us with the name of a
seventh century BCE figure, which resembles other names known to us from both
the Biblical and archeological record… and provides us with a connection to the
people living in Jerusalem at the end of the First Temple period,” the statement
Uziel and Zanton noted that the inscription “was engraved on the
bowl prior to firing, indicating that the inscription originally adorned the rim
of the bowl in its entirety, and was not written on a shard after the vessel was