11-year-old boy finds silver coin of the Holy Jerusalem probably minted in the temple

An 11-year-old girl found a rare 2,000-year-old silver coin in Jerusalem, the Israel Antiquities Authority announced Tuesday. The coin was probably struck by a priest who joined the Jewish rebels in revolt before the Romans, shortly before the Temple was destroyed.
“This is a rare find, as of the many thousands of coins discovered to date in archaeological excavations, only about 30 coins are silver coins, from the Great Revolt period,” said Dr. Robert Kool, Head of the Currency. IAA Department.

The coin is made of pure silver and weighs about 14 grams. On one side it has a cup and the inscription “Israeli shekel” and “second year”, referring to the second year of the revolt (67-68 CE). On the other hand, another inscription says “Holy Jerusalem” in ancient Hebrew script and is accompanied by another word that according to experts refers to the seat of the High Priest in the Temple.

At that time, the minting of coins was an act of expression of sovereignty.

The silver coin with a cup with the legend: “Israel Shekel” and the letters: Shin and Bet (second year of the Great Revolt). (credit: ELIYAHU YANAI / CITY OF DAVID)

Huge reserves of silver were kept in the Temple, and Kool believes that the silver to mint the coin probably came from those reserves, in light of the quality of their silver.

“If so, we can safely say that this coin is apparently one of the only items we can have today that originated from the temple itself,” he said.

The coin was found by a participant in the Emek Tzurim Screening Project sifting through the earth excavated on the Pilgrimage Trail.

“This street, which connected the Pool of Siloam in the south of the City of David with the Temple Mount in the north, was the main street of Jerusalem during the Second Temple period, where thousands of pilgrims marched on their way to the temple.” said the archaeologist. Ari Levy, who is leading the excavation on behalf of the IAA.

“There is no doubt that there would have been extensive trade here, this is evidenced by the many pesos and bronze coins that we have found here,” he added. “But finding a rebel coin made of pure silver is definitely very special and exciting.”

“When I came to Emek Tzurim I thought there must be simple coins in the buckets, but I didn’t think I would find a coin myself, and certainly not such a rare coin made of pure silver,” said Liel, an 11-year-old girl. Krutokop from Petah Tikva, who came with his family to do an archaeological screening in the City of David. “I was lucky to find it, but I also want to thank my sister for choosing the bucket we sift. If I hadn’t chosen this particular cube, I probably wouldn’t have found the coin. “


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