1,500 year-old Ten Commandments tablet heads to auction in Texas

The tablet was acquired in 1943 by an archeologist, who owned it until his death in 2000.

By REUTERS
October 22, 2016 15:57
1 minute read.
A stone tablet thought to be about 1,500 years old with a, worn-down chiseled inscription of the Ten

A stone tablet thought to be about 1,500 years old with a, worn-down chiseled inscription of the Ten Commandments.. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

DALLAS  - A stone tablet thought to be about 1,500 years old with a worn-down chiseled inscription of the Ten Commandments will be sold next month at auction, with a stipulation that the buyer must put it on public display, an auction house said on Friday.

The two-foot (61 cm) square slab of white marble weighs about 200 pounds (90 kgs) and is believed to be the oldest existing stone inscription of the commandments, Dallas-Based Heritage Auctions said. Opening bid is $250,000 for the stone, which the current owner likes to point out is not the original.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


The tablet is inscribed in Samaritan script with the principles which are fundamental to Judaism and Christianity. It was probably chiseled during the late Roman or Byzantine era, between 300 and 500 A.D., and marked the entrance of an ancient synagogue that was likely destroyed by the Romans, Heritage said in a statement.

It was discovered in 1913 during an excavation for a railroad line in Israel, said Rabbi Shaul Deutsch, founder of the Living Torah Museum, in Brooklyn, New York, which obtained the tablet in 2005.

An Arab man, possibly a construction worker, acquired it and set it in his courtyard, where it remained for three decades, Deutsch said.

The museum, which contains a large collection of artifacts of Jewish life and history dating back to antiquity, is shifting toward a more hands-on focus to attract younger visitors and decided it was time to sell the artifact.

"The sale will provide us with the money to do what we need to do. It's all for the best," Deutsch said in a statement.

JPOST VIDEOS THAT MIGHT INTEREST YOU:


The tablet was acquired in 1943 by an archeologist, who owned it until his death in 2000. Deutsch was able to acquire the tablet for a temporary period through an agreement with the Israel Antiquities Authority and then purchased it outright after a legal settlement, Heritage officials said

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

THE TEL AVIV skyline; the area around the city is home to many Israeli start-ups
November 16, 2018
Shop, pray, repeat - the emerging synagogue trend in Israeli retail stores

By ZACHARY KEYSER