For the first time, archaeologists have found evidence of a luxury item mentioned in the Bible: tiny ivory panels that would have been embedded on wooden furniture of the high and mighty during the First Temple period in ancient Jerusalem, the Israel Antiquities Authority announced on Monday.
The panels were likely used on a reclining couch, the archaeologists suggest.
The ivory panels were found in the archaeological site formerly known as the Givati parking lot, next to the Old City of Jerusalem. The delicate ivories were in parlous condition, crushed and burned, having been found in a monumental building that had apparently been destroyed during the Babylonian conquest of Jerusalem in the year 586 B.C.E. But they were painstakingly restored.
This is the first time fancy furniture inlays made of ivory have been found in ancient Jerusalem, Reli Avisar, Yiftah Shalev, Harel Shochat, Yuval Gadot and Ido Koch reported in the journal Atiqot (“Antiquities”).