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Thursday, 24 May 2012


Israeli archaeologists have unearthed a 2,700-year-old clay seal with the name of Bethlehem, showing that the town existed centuries before it was revered as Jesus' birthplace.

Discovered during the sifting‭ ‬of‭ debris ‬removed‭ ‬from archaeological excavations near the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem, the coin-sized clay seal, or bulla, was imprinted with three lines in ancient Hebrew script: "in the seventh," "Bethlehem" and "to the king."

"It seems that in the seventh year of the reign of a king ‭(‬it is unclear if the king referred to is Hezekiah,‭ ‬Manasseh or Josiah‭)‬,‭ ‬a shipment was‭ ‬dispatched from Bethlehem to the king in Jerusalem," Eli Shukron, director of the excavation on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority, said in a statement Wednesday.

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