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Archaeologists find fabric collection from time of King David

Tel Aviv University team finds priceless collection of fabric in Timna Valley, believed site of King Solomon’s mines.

A team of archaeologists, led by Tel Aviv University’s Dr. Erez Ben-Yosef, has found a large collection of fabrics dating back to the era of King David and his son Solomon.

This is the first time textiles from that period have been discovered, and they are expected to provide information on the clothes and fashion that were used by ancient Israelites, as well as the neighboring Edomites.

“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,” Dr. Ben-Yosef said. “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. 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. They were responsible for smelting the copper, which was a very complicated process.”

The pieces vary in size, color, ornamentation and technique. “Some of these fabrics resemble textiles only known from the Roman era,” said Dr. Orit Shamir of the Israel Antiquities Authority.

TAU masters student Vanessa Workman elaborated: “We found linen, which was not produced locally. It was most likely from the Jordan Valley or Northern Israel. The majority of the fabrics were made of sheep’s wool, a cloth that is seldom found in this ancient


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