Teenage Archeology Enthusiasts Unearth 1,400 Year-Old Wine Press In Jerusalem
A woman running her dog in a wooded area in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Neve Yaakov, alerted the Israel Antiquities Authority after spotting the ancient wine-press, which apparently had been uncovered by local teens.
By Yori Yalon
A wine press used 1,400 years ago was recently unearthed in the Neve Yaakov neighborhood in northeast Jerusalem.
Archeologists noted that the wine press had been excavated carefully – Photo: Alex Vigman/Israel Antiquities Authority
Local resident Tamar Simon was running with her dog in a nearby wooded area when noticed the ancient remains. Simon alerted the Israel Antiquities Authority.
Archeologists were surprised at the sight of the ancient press, which measures five meters (16.4 feet) across, carved out of a boulder. The wine press is comprised of a large, square treading floor where grapes were laid down and crushed by barefoot workers. The newly extracted grape juice, or “must,” flowed into a square distributing vat via a conduit also carved into the rock. From there, the juice was moved into a collecting vat.
Amit Re’em, an archeologist with the IAA assigned to the Jerusalem District, said that the Antiquities Authority team was surprised at what they found, and noted that the wine press had been excavated with care, but that archeologists from the Antiquities Authority hadn’t conducted any dig in that location.
When inspecting the site, the archeologists spotted a teenager, who told them enthusiastically that he and his friends liked archeology and had decided to dig out the wine press together.
“The story touched our hearts and reminded us of our own childhoods,” Re’em said. “However, it’s important to know that a non-methodic excavation results in the loss of valuable archeological information.” He added that young people interested in archeology who wanted to join official Antiquities Authority digs were welcome to contact the IAA (in Hebrew) via its website (in English).
View original Israel Hayom publication at: http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_article.php?id=25551