TEL AVIV, Israel — Archaeologists in Israel have announced the discovery of a collection of textile fragments and seeds believed to date back to the era of King David and his son Solomon.
Tel Aviv University disclosed the find on Wednesday, outlining that it helps to shed light on life during Bible times—including in regard to ways of the Edomites, the enemy of Israel.
“No textiles have ever been found at excavation sites like Jerusalem, Megiddo and Hazor, so this provides a unique window into an entire aspect of life from which we’ve never had physical evidence before,” said excavation project leader Dr. Erez Ben-Yosef. “We found fragments of textiles that originated from bags, clothing, tents, ropes and cords.”
“The wide variety of fabrics also provides new and important information about the Edomites, who, according to the Bible, warred with the Kingdom of Israel,” he continued. “We found simply woven, elaborately decorated fabrics worn by the upper echelon of their stratified society. Luxury grade fabric adorned the highly skilled, highly respected craftsmen managing the copper furnaces.”
Ben-Yosef said that the fabrics were brightly dyed, had complex designs, and were of strong quality.
“‘Nomad’ does not mean ‘simple,'” he outlined. “This discovery strengthens our understanding of the Edomites as an important geopolitical presence.
Ben-Yosef also outlined that his team found thousands of seeds considered to be from the biblical “Seven Species,” and were found from radiocarbon dating to match the times of King David.
“This is the first time seeds from this period have been found uncharred and in such large quantities,” he stated. “With the advancement of modern science, we now enjoy research options that were unthinkable a few decades ago. We can reconstruct wine typical of King David’s era, for example, and understand the cultivation and domestication processes that have been preserved in the DNA of the seed.”
The announcement is the latest in a string of exciting finds, including reports of the discovery of an ancient bracelet fragment embossed with an image of a temple menorah, the locating of the site of Jesus’ trial underneath a Jerusalem prison, the uncovering of the gate to the biblical city Gath, and the discovery of a seal bearing the name of the biblical king Hezekiah.