Virtual Dead Sea Scrolls Gets 1M Hits in a Week

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Almost one week after debuting online, the website featuring the 2,000-year-old Dead Sea Scrolls has already drawn more than a million hits.

The Israel Museum and Google Israel launched the site Sept. 26. They say interest in the ancient scrolls has exceeded expectations.

"We didn't know it would be so popular; we've had so many visitors in such a short period of time," Dr. Susan Hazan, the Israel Museum curator overseeing the Dead Sea Scrolls Digital Project, said in the Jerusalem Post.
   
The site features detailed images of the five scrolls. It also provides an English translation of the text.

"Users from all over the world can examine and explore this ancient biblical manuscript at a level of detail never possible before," said Eyal Miller, head of new business development at Google Israel. 

"This is actually a part of a wider Google initiative to bring the world information and cultural heritage online," he added.
   
This is the first time many of the scrolls, which date from the third century BC to the first century AD, have been seen since they were discovered in 1947.

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