Inauguration of Tel Hevron Archaeological Garden

Ancient mikvah, wine press and olive press now open to the public.

7.10.18, 11:24
(PHOTO: Tel Hevron excavation site being prepared for visitiors.)
The excavations are complete and the official inauguration is scheduled for Hebron's newest archaeological garden. The event will take place Tuesday October 16, 2018 at 6:00PM. 
Tel Hevron has always been known as one of the oldest sections of the city, but the 2014 excavation by the Israeli Antiquities Authority took the site to another level by uncovering mikvot, wine presses and pottery. 
By 2016, the area which was once strewn with garbage after years of neglect was finally cleaned up and guard railings and paths installed. The excavations, led by archaeologists Prof. Emanuel Eisenberg and Prof. Shlomo Ben-David, revealed Jewish life in Hebron dating back to the second Temple period, from which there has been no known prior research. Two impressive and elegant mikvot [ritual baths] were discovered, evidence that the residents believed in maintaining the laws of ritual purity.
Facilities next to the ritual baths were discovered for the manufacturing of wine, oil and pottery, which attests to agricultural products being produced on an industrial scale. 
The proximity of the mikvot next to the wine presses gives reasonable evidence that the wine was sent to the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. Hebron has been known since antiquity for its superior soil and weather conditions for grape harvesting.
Tel Hebron, known in Arabic as Tel Rumeida, is home to the Tomb of Jesse and Ruth, an ancient stone structure that has been revered for generations. The 2014 discoveries are located behind the Tomb of Jesse and Ruth complex on the hillside near the ancient "Cyclopean wall." 
This ancient wall was discovered during the Hammond excavations which took place between 1963 to 1966 by Professor Philip C. Hammond of the American Expedition to Hebron. The excavations took place on the southern side of Tel Hevron (mound) and also uncovered the King's Seal, an artifact with the words "To the King, Hebron, in ancient Hebrew.
In 1999, the Tel Hebron Excavations took place from April to September and uncovered a flight of stone steps believed to be 4,000 years old.  Archaeologist Emanuel Eisenberg, from the Israeli Antiquities Authority postulated that the original gate of ancient Hebron might be found by digging under the present day street where the stairs end. This may be the gates of Hebron mentioned in the Bible where Abraham purchased the Cave of Machpela and surrounding field for the Jewish people as stated in Genesis chapter 23. 
Prof. Eisenberg returned in 2014 and helped uncovered the mikvah, olive oil presses and wine presses which are being officially unveiled this month. 
Speaking at the event in a "TED Talk" style lecture series will be:
* Prof. Gershon Bar-Kochba, author of the recently published Inscription: Stone, Wood  and Copper in the Cave of the Patriarchs
* Noam Arnon, author of HaMaarah: Discoveries and Studies at the Cave of Machpela
* Prof. David Ben Shlomo of Ariel University,  co-director of the excavation
A musical performance by world-renown Israeli singer David Dor will take place.
The ceremony will be presided over by: 
* Avraham Ben Yosef, head of the Hebron municipal committee
* Member of Knesset Uri Ariel, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development
* Member of Knesset Eli Ben-Dahan, Deputy Minister of Defense
* Shaul Goldstein, Head of the Israel Nature and Parks Authority
Cost of the event is a nominal 20 NIS. The event is sponsored by the Israel Antiquities Authority, the Israel Nature and Parks Authority, and the Jewish community of Hebron.
Tuesday October 16, 2018, 6:00PM, in Tel Hevron.
To register call 02-996-5333 or visit
United States contact info:
1760 Ocean Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11230

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