New Papyri Fragments Discovered in Dead Sea Cave
Haaretz reports on the discovery of new papyri fragments in Judean Desert.
Archaeologists excavating in the Judean desert have recently found new papyri fragments in the Cave of the Skulls near the Dead Sea. Like the Dead Sea Scrolls found before them, they have survived mainly due to the region’s arid climate. The fragments are tiny and the writing so faded that they will require advanced technological analysis to determine much about their content. The fragments do give scholars hope that they will be able to match these pieces to documents which have turned up in the black market in recent years and have no known provenance.
Besides the papyri, archaeologists also found hundreds of fragments of leather, ropes, textiles, wooden objects and bone tools used inside the cave.
The Israel Antiquities Authority and Hebrew University are partnering to further explore the Judean Desert caves in order to salvage any hidden antiquities that remain before robbers get there first. The Place of the Skulls excavation is the initial effort in this ongoing project.