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September 9, 2016 12:05 pm

1,500-Year-Old Livestock Stable Discovered in Israel’s Negev

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Ein Avdat, Israel. Photo: Roger Braunstein via Flickr.

Ein Avdat, Israel. Photo: Roger Braunstein via Flickr.

JNS.org – A 1,500-year-old livestock stable from the Byzantine period was discovered by Israeli and American archaeologists in the Ein Avdat National Park in the Jewish state’s Negev region.

Dr. Tali Erickson-Gini of the Israel Antiquities Authority and Professor Scott Bucking of DePaul University directed the joint excavation project with participation from the Har HaNegev Field School.

“The identification as a stable was corroborated by an almost one meter thick layer of organic matter (donkey, sheep and goat manure) on the floor of the building,” Bucking and Erickson-Gini said in a statement. “It seems that the place was destroyed by an earthquake that decimated the city of Ein Avdat in the early seventh century CE.”

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The stable was built in one of the rock-hewn caves on the mountainside. Inside, there were stone basins most likely used for storing food and water for animals.

The archaeological team believes the stable, divided into stone-built rooms with crosses painted on the walls, was used by monks.

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