Sunday, July 18, 2010

More on gold coin found at Bethsaida

THAT GOLD COIN recently excavated at Bethsaida gets a close look by Arutz Sheva:
2,000-Year-Old Gold Coin a Testament to Galilee Ancient History

by Hana Levi Julian

A 2,000-year-old gold coin discovered by a West Virginia University student at an archaeological site in the upper Galilee has proven to be the find of the season.

It is the first Antonius Pius coin ever found in Israel and was discovered by Alexis Whitley and her friend, on one of the hottest days of the summer. The two were clearing away dirt and rocks at the Bethsaida site when suddenly, Alex spotted the sparkle of a coin as it slipped down.

Unaware of its significance, it took a while for Whitley to understand why excavation director Dr. Rami Arav immediately had her pose with the coin as photographers raced to the site.

The coin, which Arav described as a discovery of Biblical dimensions, weights 7 grams of 24-karat gold – 97.6 percent gold, to be exact. It depicts the portrait of Antonius Pius, a Roman emperor who rules from 138-161 CE.

The article includes images of the coin with its finder; a nice one of the coin itself; and photos of a gold earring, a tetradrachm coin, and a cooking pot found at the same site.

Background here.