Postcard from the Past: 2nd Temple Relics Unearthed

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JERUSALEM, Israel -- The excavation of an ancient tunnel beneath Jerusalem has uncovered some amazing relics dating back to the time of the destruction of the Second Jewish Temple.

Archaeologists excavating in a drainage channel discovered a 2,000-year-old iron sword still in its leather scabbard.

"This is the only sword that we found in Jerusalem in that time in the 70 AD when the Roman destroyed Jerusalem," Israel Antiquities Authority archaeologist Eli Shukron told CBN News.
 
Shukron said the 60-centimeter sword provides an idea about the weapons used in that day.

"We don't know how it came into the tunnel, but maybe it's part of the fight that belonged [to the] Jew and the Roman in Jerusalem in that time," he speculated.
 
The drainage channel begins in the biblical pool of Siloam and runs to the area of the Western Wall and Temple Mount.
 
During the time of the destruction of the Second Temple, Jews fleeing the Romans would hide in the tunnels.
 
Alongside the drainage ditch, archaeologists also uncovered a stone with a simple etching of a menorah - the temple candelabra.
 
Shukron said it's like a "postcard from the past."

"It's very, very important …to understand that someone saw the menorah and gave us a message…his information, his feeling about what he saw before 2,000 years -- and this is fantastic," he said.

Shukron said the discoveries show the contrasts in Jerusalem at the time - both the beauty of the temple and the Roman destruction of the city.

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Julie Stahl

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