Prehistoric Artifacts Unearthed At The Ein Zippori In Israel

26 September, 2012

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Follow us: - Archaeologists in Israel unearthed a variety of impressive prehistoric artifacts including pottery, flint tools, basalt vessels and artistic objects of great importance

The discovery was made at the prehistoric site, which existed from the end of the Neolithic period and beginning of the Chalcolithic period in the country belonging to the “Wadi Rabah” culture, common in Israel from the end of the sixth millennium and beginning of the fifth millennium BCE," according to Dr. Ianir Milevski and Nimrod Getzov, excavation directors on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority.

This ancient culture was probably the largest in the country.

"We found a series of small and delicate bowls made of fine stone and decorated that we believe was not something that every person in a village would have," Dr. Ianir Milevski said.

"There are also beads made of stones and shells, luxury items that we think these items probably belong to a special elite group."

Photographic credit: Clara Amit, courtesy of the Israel Antiquities Authority

“The presence of remains from the Wadi Rabah culture in most of our excavation areas and in surveys that were performed elsewhere at the site shows that Ein Zippori is an enormous site that stretched across c. 200 dunams.

It turns out that this antiquities site is one of the largest, if not the largest, in the country where there are remains of this culture.

“Pottery bearing features characteristic of the Wadi Rabah culture such as painted and incised decorations and red and black painted vessels were exposed.

Outstanding among the flint tools that were discovered are the sickle blades that were used to harvest grain, indicating the existence of an agricultural economy. We also found flint axes that were designed for working wood. The barter that transpired at the time is attested to by thin sharp blades made of obsidian, a volcanic stone that is not indigenous to the region and the closest source is in Turkey. These items constituted part of the network of trade that stretched over thousands of kilometers in such an ancient period”.

Photographic credit: Clara Amit, courtesy of the Israel Antiquities Authority

Among the special finds that were uncovered in the excavation is a group of small stone bowls that were made with amazing delicacy. One of them was discovered containing more than 200 black, white and red stone beads.

Other important artifacts are clay figurines of animals (sheep, pig and cattle) that illustrate the importance of animal breeding in those cultures. The most importance finds are stone seals or amulets bearing geometric motifs and stone plaques and bone objects decorated with incising.

Among the stone plaques is one that bears a simple but very elegant carving depicting two running ostriches. These objects represent the world of religious beliefs and serve as a link that connects Ein Zippori with the cultures of these periods in Syria and Mesopotamia.

“The arrival of these objects at the Ein Zippori site shows that a social stratum had already developed at that time that included a group of social elite which used luxury items that were imported from far away countries”.


See also:
Two Stone Age 9,500-Year-Old Artifacts Unearthed

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