3,500-year-old bracelet found in Israel

August 3rd, 2010 - 9:00 pm ICT by IANS  

Jerusalem, Aug 3 (IANS) Israeli authorities Tuesday announced the discovery of a unique bracelet in an excavation in northern Israel, dating back to the late Bronze Age.
The “extraordinarily well preserved” ancient bronze bracelet is decorated with engravings and the top of it is adorned with a horned structure, said Karen Covello-Paran, chief archaeologist of the dig.

“At that time, horns were the symbol of the storm-god and they represented power, fertility and law,” she said.

According to the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA), this is the first time that a 3,500-year-old village has been excavated and exposed in the north of Israel. To date, only the large cities have been excavated in the region, such as Tel Megiddo or Tel Hazor.

“Here we have gained a first glimpse of life in the ancient rural hinterland in the north, and it turns out that it was more complex than we thought,” Covello-Paran said in a statement sent to Xinhua.

“The person who could afford such a bracelet was apparently very well off financially, and it probably belonged to the village ruler. It is interesting to note that in the artwork of neighbouring lands, gods and rulers were depicted wearing horned crowns; however, such a bracelet, and from an archaeological excavation at that, has never been found here,” Covello-Paran said.

A Canaanite scarab made of stone and engraved with Egyptian hieroglyphs was also found. In antiquity, scarabs were worn as pendants or were inlaid in rings, and they were used as a seal by the people who carried them or as a talisman with magical powers, the statement said.

The finds were uncovered while preparing infrastructure in an area near the mountain town of Zefat, north of the Sea of Galilee and not far from the Lebanese border.

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