Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Abgar family tomb in Urfa necropolis?

SYRIAC WATCH: World’s largest necropolis in Turkey's southeast (ŞANLIURFA – Doğan News Agency/ Hürriyet Daily News).
A large number of expansive rock tombs which could constitute part of the world’s largest necropolis have been discovered during work carried out by the Şanlıurfa Municipality around the historic Urfa Castle in southeastern Turkey.

"Urfa" is the modern name for ancient Edessa, the city whose Aramaic dialect (Syriac) became the language of Eastern Christianity.
Among the newly found tombs, one was situated on the highest part of the castle’s hill and was bigger than the other tombs. It was estimated to have belonged to the nobles of Edessa King Abgar’s family. The tomb had rooms for 10 people. Also, floor mosaics were found in one of the tombs.
The Abgar dynasty is best known from the apocryphal correspondence between Jesus and King Abgar V, preserved by Eusebius in Greek and in other manuscripts in Syriac. The article does not explain why the tombs are connected with the Abgar dynasty.
Syriac inscriptions and fine engravings can also be seen in another tomb in the area.

Back in 2009 I noted the report of another Syriac inscription discovered in Urfa. Most of the links have rotted, but follow the Hygoye link to see a photo of the inscription.

Cross-file under New Testament Apocrypha Watch.