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February 25, 2016 7:30 pm

7-Year-Old Israeli Hiker Discovers 3,400-Year-Old Statuette

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The 3.400-year-old statue discovered by 7-year-old hiker Uri Grinhot in Israel. Credit: Israel Antiquities Authority.

The 3.400-year-old statue discovered by 7-year-old hiker Uri Grinhot in Israel. Credit: Israel Antiquities Authority.

JNS.org – A 7-year-old Israeli boy discovered a rare 3,400-year-old relic while on a hike with his father and some friends in the Beit She’an Valley in northern Israel this week.

While climbing a hill in the archaeological park of Tel Rehov, Uri Grinhot found a clay statuette of a nude woman.

“We explained to him that it was an antique, and that the [Israel] Antiquities Authority maintains its findings for the general public,” said Grinhot’s mother, Moriah. The family then reported the finding to the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA).

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Amichai Mazar—an emeritus professor at Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the leader of a delegation of archaeological excavation representatives in the area—examined the statue and said he determined that “it is typical of the Canaanite culture of the 15th to 13th centuries BC. Some researchers believe the figure represents a woman of flesh and blood, and others see it as Astarte, goddess of fertility, known from Canaanite [history] and the bible.”

The IAA presented Grinhot a certificate for good citizenship for discovering and reporting the finding. Archaeologists later came to his school to discuss the statuette.

“It was an amazing occasion! The archaeologists entered the class during a Torah lesson, just when we were learning about Rahel stealing her father’s household gods (“trafim” which are mentioned in Genesis 31). I explained that the household gods were statues that were used in idol worship, and all of a sudden I realize that these very same idols are here in the classroom!” said the boy’s teacher, Esther Ledell.

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  • Peter

    That’s an amazing find by the boy. I hope the story will be advertised next to the relic when it’s in a museum.

  • Bill Toews

    Truly a teachable moment. Confirming again Israels right to the land.

  • The date term “BC” declares a belief in Jesus as the messiah, and its use here is inappropriate. “BC” should be used only by Christians addressing a Christian audience or readership. Its use otherwise represents intolerance for diversity.

    • David Fried

      Oh, grow up! Is “BCE,” before the Common Era, really an improvement? The “Common Era” is just a euphemism for the “Christian era.” The whole world uses the same calendar for nearly all secular purposes, however it originated. When you write “July” or “August” are you worshipping the deified Roman Caesars Julius and Augustus? When you say “Wednesday” are you worshipping Odin? I promise you that neither Amichai Mazar nor the Jew who wrote this article are proclaiming their belief in Jesus as the Messiah.

    • B.Abrahams

      As far as the indication “BC” goes, it is used by the general public since they can’t think further back than 2000 years, (often they can’t even think back to 1947, the UN vote regarding partition of the former inappropriately named /British Palestine mandate.)so we helped them out by introducing the indication “BCE”, meaning “Before Common Era”. If we suppose that the writer is a fairly well-educated person, we should forgive him his typing error and advise him to, next time, check his writing better.

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