Tuesday, September 22, 2015

The Latest Efforts To Find the Tomb of the Maccabees

Where is the famous tomb of the Maccabees? Archaeologists working in the vicinity of Modiin in recent weeks found something, but not enough to positively identify the long-lost mausoleum. From the Times of Israel:

Israeli archaeologists had hoped to finally uncover the mystery of the ancient tomb of the Maccabees — but they have been thwarted once again.

Archaeological authorities said Monday they had carried out another excavation at a site near Modiin northwest of Jerusalem to determine “once and for all” whether the tomb was indeed there.

The tomb of the family that led the Jewish revolt against the Greek dynasty of the Seleucids in the 2nd century BCE is believed to have been among ancient Judea’s most impressive structures.

“We exposed again the base of what survived from this magnificent building — this is a rare and unique building — but yet we didn’t find the smoking gun, the hard evidence which would enable us to tell you that this is for sure the tomb of the Maccabees,” said Amit Reem, an official with the project.

So how do you spin this one? Some headlines are more optimistic, and others more pessimistic:

CBS News: Fabled Maccabees tomb may have been unearthed

Arutz-7: Is This the Real Tomb of the Maccabees?

Portland Press Herald: Archaeologists say site holds promise as long-sought tomb of biblical Maccabees

i24News: Tomb of the Maccabees keeps its secrets despite new dig

Times of Israel: New dig fails to shed light on ancient Maccabee tombs

To volunteer or donate to the excavation, see the IAA press release.

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