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Ancient seals discovered bearing female and male names

In Jerusalem ancient seals have been discovered bearing female and male names

During the excavations in the vicinity of the city of David, at the site of the old Giv’ati car park, near Jerusalem’s neighborhood Silwan (Shiloah), archeologists discovered two miniature seals dating from around the VIth century B.C. (the time of the destruction of the First Temple).

Upon these seals the names of a woman and a man can be read – Elihana bat Gael and Sa‘aryahu ben Shabenyahu. (Since we are talking about the seals, the inscriptions in Phoenician alphabet are engraved upon them in mirror writing.)

According to the explanation of the Israel Antiquities Authority, the possession of such a seal gave its owner the legal right for business activities and property ownership. These seals were used to sign the deals, and they designated not only the name and the nationality of the owner, but also their social status.

In the press-service of IAA it was stressed that the seals of this period with Hebrew names, especially with the name of a woman – is an extremely rare find.

In the time of the FirstTemple, women could be the owners of personal seals much less often than men, because, as a rule, they did not make business, did not own property, or any other significant possessions.

At the present stage, the researchers cannot say who Elihana bat Gael and Sa‘aryahu ben Shabenyahu were. They are confident that new discoveries and mysteries should be expected from the excavations at Giv’ati.

Seal bearing the name Elihana bat Gael. Photo קלרה עמית. Presented by Israel Antiquities Authority

Seal bearing the name Elihana bat Gael. Photo קלרה עמית. Presented by Israel Antiquities Authority

Seal bearing the name Elihana bat Gael. Photo קלרה עמית. Presented by Israel Antiquities Authority

Seal bearing the name Elihana bat Gael. Photo קלרה עמית. Presented by Israel Antiquities Authority

Seal bearing the name Sa‘aryahu ben Shabenyahu . Photo קלרה עמית. Presented by Israel Antiquities Authority

Seal bearing the name Sa‘aryahu ben Shabenyahu . Photo קלרה עמית. Presented by Israel Antiquities Authority

Seal bearing the name Sa‘aryahu ben Shabenyahu . Photo קלרה עמית. Presented by Israel Antiquities Authority

Seal bearing the name Sa‘aryahu ben Shabenyahu . Photo קלרה עמית. Presented by Israel Antiquities Authority

Discovered seals. Photo by Y. Zindel

Discovered seals. Photo by Y. Zindel

This material has been taken from web-resource:  NEWSru.co.il, posted on 07.03.2016. 

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