Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Jerusalem Drainage Tunnel from 70 CE Discovered

MSNBC is reporting the recent discovery of a large drainage tunnel in Jerusalem dating to the destruction of the city by the Romans in 70 CE. The underground tunnel will probably end up being about half a mile long, stretching south from the temple mount down to the Shiloah Pool. According to MSNBC, it appears to be the selfsame tunnel that Josephus in The Jewish War says numerous people used for shelter during the siege of 70 until they fled the city through its southern end.

Jerusalem tunnel from 70 CE

3 Comments:

Blogger C&N said...

That's incredible! Did the report touch on whether this system mirrors the designs found in Rome (or any of the other major cites of the Empire)?

Wed Sep 12, 08:41:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger S and C said...

In the article I read, not much was yet reported on the actual design of the system. It may be that more excavation work still needs to be done before they get to that point... ---SLC

Wed Sep 12, 08:58:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Pat said...

There is an article about the tunnel discovery on the Oriental Institute website, by Norman Golb, with a list of passages from Josephus. Apparently, not only did the archaeologists blunder in stating that Josephus described refugees hiding in this particular tunnel, but they also did not realize that a number of similar gigantic tunnels were unearthed in Jerusalem during the 19th century (Golb reproduces a bunch of amazing illustrations from a book entitled Underground Jerusalem, published in 1876). The link to Golb's article is:

http://oi.uchicago.edu/pdf/jerusalem_tunnel_sept2007.pdf

Fri Sep 21, 04:31:00 PM GMT-5  

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