Bookstore Glossary Library Links News Publications Timeline Virtual Israel Experience
Anti-Semitism Biography History Holocaust Israel Israel Education Myths & Facts Politics Religion Travel US & Israel Vital Stats Women
donate subscribe Contact About Home

Archaeology in Israel: Twin Seals

(March 2016)

Two seals, one bearing the name of a man and one the name of a woman, were found near each other during excavations of the City of David, near Jerusalem National Park. Excavation directors from the Israeli Antiquities Authority guessed that the seals were from a large ancient administrative building currently being unearthed at the Giv‘ati parking lot, south of the Temple Mount. The seals were found inside of a large building that dates to the First Temple period.

Excavation directors Dr. Doron Ben-Ami and Yana Tchekhanovets applauded the discovery, stating that “finding a seal from the time of the First Temple period in excavations in Jerusalem is not a commonplace occurrence, and finding a seal that bears the name of a woman is an even rarer phenomenon. Personal seals such as these were used for signing documents and were often inlaid as part of a ring. In antiquity they designated the identity, genealogy and status of the owner of the seal.” The inferior economic status of women in ancient times makes the discovery of a seal belonging to a woman culturally significant. Because of this, it is believed that the owner of the seal must have been a wealthy, high-status individual.

Source:“To Elihana Bat Gael Seal,” City of David