Thursday, February 21, 2013

The Shiloh Lintel

At Ebay I found an interesting photograph.

One of the lesser-known sites at Tel Shiloh, (the official site)

the plan from the PEF drawing

probably because it is a bit away from the normal route taken by the tourists, is Jama A-Sittin (not on that drawing) which is either a reference to a mosque that was used on the sixth day in that perhaps it was a special location or, according to a legend, was the site of a battle involving 60 heroes.

In any case, the structure most probably was a synagouge and was improved during the Roman period (100-333 CE) and then taken over for use as a mosque.

Its northern wall is sloped leading some to surmise that it was modeled after the Tabernacle but the prevailing current opinion is that the wall was improved upon at a later stage, perhaps extra support was added.

It had a lintel which is no longer there.

Here it is:

A closer look:

This description from Israel Ben-Aryeh:

Another Moslem building was found 500 meters south of the tell, called Jama a-sitin. In the opinion of the archeologist Ze'ev Yeivin, it was constructed on top of a synagogue from the Roman period.

Jama a-sitin in the 19th century.
Secondary use of the lintel in the Moslem building.

Yeivin cleaned out the building and found a decorated stone lintel from the Roman period, and Byzantine capitols and pillars. The lintel is currently in the Rockefeller museum, and it is likely that it was originally part of a synagogue, and was later integrated into the mosque.

It can be seen in four photographs I published in 2009.

On the lintel over the doorway, between two wreaths of flowers, is carved a vessel shaped like a Roman amphora, so closely resembling the "pot of manna," as found on coins and in the ruins of the synagogue at Capernaum, that it doubtless formed part of the original building.
As for the David's Star/Shield at Shiloh, and other lintels around the country, read here.


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