Israeli archaeologists have discovered Christian monastery complex of the V century
Archaeologists have found in Rosh ha’ayin in the Central district of Israel ancient manor house and the Byzantine Church. Researchers estimate the age of the estate is approximately 2700 years old, the age of the Church in 1500 years. About the findings the scientists reported in a press release from the Israel antiquities authority.
The detected size of the estate — 30 x 50 meters, its walls are preserved to a height of over two meters. The house had 24 rooms gathered around a Central courtyard. In the courtyard scientists found a large compartment for the storage of grain, which, according to archeologists, suggest that in ancient times in the area the grain is grown in large quantities. This is also confirmed by the earlier findings in the excavations millstones. Along with other artifacts found on the estate, the researchers found two silver coins with the image of the Greek goddess Athena and her owl. Scientists have dated the coins to the fourth century BC. Also, there was found a stone press for olive oil.
According to the head of the excavations Amide of Shadman, this farm and others like it worked for centuries, until, until they were abandoned in the Hellenistic period (after 323 BC). The revival of the territory began in the Byzantine Empire in the V century came a new wave of settlers-Christians.
On one of the nearby hills, the researchers discovered a monastery from the Byzantine period. In the monastery complex, archaeologists have found a Church, an olive press, living quarters and stables with original mangers and troughs. The floor of the Abbey Church was covered with colorful mosaics. On one of the mosaics survived the inscription: “This place was built under the supervision of a priest Theodosius. Peace be with you, when you came, peace be with you, when you go away, Amen.”
A few centuries after the monastery ceased to function during the Ottoman Empire there was built a lime kiln and a large part of the monastery was destroyed.
The latest findings — not only archaeological sites near Rosh ha-ain. To the West of the city there is a fortress Antipatris built in the first century BC by Herod the Great and named in honour of his father Antipater. To the South-East of the city ruins of the fortress of Migdal Aphek, built on the remains of buildings of the Byzantine period.
In the most unexpected places in Israel are constantly finding ancient treasures. Always before starting any construction work, the Israel antiquities authority is conducting a so-called “security” excavations.
“We started to dig not knowing that can find. But three months later, found quite a large well-preserved monastery,” says archaeologist Amit Shadman.
In the area of Rosh ha-Ayin was found many churches and monasteries, which implies that Christianity was spread here about the fifth century. Guide excavations Amit Shadman said that recently found the Byzantine Church was paved with colourful mosaics. One of the most important discoveries was a Greek inscription at the entrance.
“It was exactly the same as today. People want to know that they gave money. You must understand that construction of such complex is a very expensive business,” — continued the archaeologist.
The inscription reads: “This was built when the priest Feodosia. Peace be upon you when you enter. Peace be with you when you go out. Amen.” This is the ancient equivalent of the modern plates showing the names of the sponsors.
In the monastic complex lived up to thirty monks, and, in the opinion of Salmana, they animals cattle breeding and agriculture. Discovered in the monastery living quarters, stables and oil press. The archaeologist said that it could not be built without the help of the Church.
“The main feature this monastery is his concern for rural areas,” says Amit Shadman.
Archaeologists have discovered near an even more ancient structure of the farmhouse, which 2700 years.
“Originally this whole area was connected with agriculture,” says the archaeologist.
Sometimes archaeologists have to move antiquity, but often they buried them again. Ancient Byzantine monastery and the estate should become part of the Park.
“I can tell you that this object will not destroy. We plan to keep it and leave as green area,” Amit Shadman.