Israeli Cavers Find Cache of Treasure

Three Israeli cavers in the north of Israel recently discovered a large, thousands-of-years old cache of jewelry, coins, and other artifacts believed to date back to the era of Alexander the Great. The valuable hoard is expected to provide archaeologists and other scientists with some important and vital insights into the world of ancient Israel.

According to officials from the Israel Antiquities Authority, the find was made by father and son, Reuven Zakai and Chen Zakai, and Lior Halony, a friend – all three spelunkers are members of the Israeli Caving Club. The group contacted the Israel Antiquities Authority and the treasure was passed over to the agency.

The Authority says that it is possible that the items were placed in the cave when people were fleeing from government unrest after Alexander the Great’s death and during the Wars of the Diadochi. The treasure includes valuables such as rings, earrings, coins and bracelets thought to be at least 2,300 years old. The items were originally enclosed in a cloth pouch prior to being hidden.

Archaeologists and cave club members went back to the cave later to explore further and discovered evidence of habitation by people. Artifacts such as pottery and gems were estimated to date as far back as 6,000 years and as current as 2,300 years, during the Hellenistic period when Alexander the Great lived and ruled.

Some of the items that stood out from this unique find were two silver coins that were minted during Alexander the Great’s reign during the late 4th century B.C., when he conquered the entire area. One side of the coin has Alexander the Great’s image, and the other side features a picture of the Greek god, Zeus, seated on his throne, with his arm raised in preparation to strike out at his enemies with lightning bolts. The two silver coins were what helped the archaeologists date the discovery.

Another amazing find in the treasure trove was a set of silver earrings. The earrings are said to be in very good shape considering where they were found and their age. Archaeologists are now expecting to search deeper within the northern Israeli cave. According to reports, it has many crevasses and other areas that have yet to be explored, where other valuable finds could be hidden.

The Authority reported that this is the second time in recent weeks that citizens have reported noteworthy archaeological discoveries – the first being a huge find in February in an Israeli Mediterranean harbor consisting of about 2,000, thousand-year old coins. At the time, it was the largest horde ever of old coins ever found in the area.

Israeli Cavers Find Cache of Treasure - Clapway