Early Christianity era wine-jug workshop unearthed in central Israel

Located in modern-times Gedera, the workshop was active for 800 years making wine jugs.

July 31, 2018 19:47
Early Christianity era wine-jug workshop unearthed in central Israel

An archeological artifact is pictured at the site where a large-scale wine jug factory that dates back to the 3rd century and included recreational facilities has been uncovered in Gedera, according to archaeologists, Israel July 31, 2018. . (photo credit: AMIR COHEN/REUTERS)


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GEDERA - Relics from a large-scale wine jug workshop that dates back around 1,800 years have been uncovered in Israel, complete with 20 baths, both hot and cold, and a room devoured to game boards that was possibly meant to allow laborers to relax, archaeologists said on Tuesday.

Gaza type wine jugs were made famous around the ancient world due to the high quality of wine produced near Gaza and shipped from the port cities of Ashkelon and Acre in specialized clay jugs to the markets of Rome and Alexandria.
Finds from the site in Gedera include piles of pottery shards, presumably from flawed and discarded jugs and four ancient game boards that are very much like Mancala and backgammon board games today. 
The factory was active for around 600 years, making vessels for storing wine that were popular export items during the Roman and Byzantine times, the Israel Antiquities Authority said in statement.

"The ongoing manufacturing may point to this having been a family business, handed down from generation to generation," it said, adding that the recreational facilities "served, perhaps, to relieve workers of the demands of their routine labor."

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