With the aid of modern imaging technology, an inscrutable inscription has been discovered on the back of a pottery shard first discovered and placed in the Israel Museum more than 50 years ago.
The pottery was found in 1965 in the ancient desert fortress of Arad.
It was in bad condition, but experts were able to date it to 600 BC–the eve of the destruction of the kingdom of Judah by Nebuchadnezzar. The inscription on the front, which begins with a prayer to God, regards money transfers. “While its front side has been thoroughly studied, its back was considered blank,” said Arie Shaus of Tel Aviv University’s department of applied mathematics. “Using multispectral imaging [we] noticed several marks on the ostracon’s reverse side. To our surprise, three new lines of text were revealed.”
Barak Sober, another researcher, added that the team “was also able to significantly improve the reading...
Become a Member
Read all member content
Get exclusive in-depth reports from Israel.
Get exclusive in-depth reports from Israel
Connect with Israel, right from your home.
Lift up the voice of truth and hope
Support Jerusalem-based Zionist journalism.
Already a member? Login here.