Top archeologist in critical condition after fall at site

By
October 28, 2010 01:55

The 76-year-old archeologist is one of the foremost experts on Herodion, a man-made mountain built by King Herod near Bethlehem.

Prof. Ehud Netzer Hebrew University archaeologist.

Ehud Netzer. (photo credit:Courtesy)

Well-known Israeli archeologist Ehud Netzer remained in critical condition Wednesday at Hadassah-University Medical Center, Ein Kerem, two days after he suffered a serious fall during a dig at the Herodion archeological site in the West Bank.

Netzer was reportedly leaning against a wooden railing on Monday when it gave way.



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He fell nearly 10 feet before landing – only to roll and fall an additional 10 feet. He suffered fractures in his cranium and vertebrae and was rushed to Hadassah in critical condition.

The 76-year-old archeologist is one of the foremost experts on Herodion, a man-made mountain built by King Herod near Bethlehem. Netzer has carried out digs at the site for more than three decades; three years ago, he found the site of Herod’s grave – a discovery that was considered the pinnacle of his career.

Digs he performed in 1968 in Jericho unearthed a Hasmonean winter palace that sported bathing pools and gardens, widely considered the most significant archeological site dealing with that period in Jewish history. The digs also unearthed the Jericho synagogue, considered the largest Jewish house of worship ever discovered.


In 1978, Netzer finished his PhD dissertation at Hebrew University, which focused on Herod’s palaces at Herodion and Jericho. He became a senior lecturer at the university in 1981, where he has taught ever since.
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