Bible and archaeology news
The Hellenized coins, featuring depictions of Heracles and a god thought to be Zeus or a sun god, are the earliest known coins from the Emirates. Ed-Dur was an important trade center between Mesopotamia and India, and the proposed UNESCO World Heritage site includes important finds from as early as 3,000 B.C.E. The site flourished between 200 B.C.E. and 300 C.E., and features a prominent first-century C.E. temple to a sun god, including sacrificial altars, ashlar masonry and a basin with the Aramaic word “Shamash,” the name of the sun god that is closely tied to the Arabic word Shams, meaning sun.
The National reports that more than “118 copper or silver coins of different shapes and sizes were found at ed-Dur. They follow to some degree the ancient Greek Attic weight standard of obols (a denomination of less than one gram), drachmas (4-5g) and tetradrachms (14-17g).” The locally minted coins provide a new insight into the understudied pre-Islamic administration. Abi’el is frequently invoked on coinage in a wide spread of sites over several centuries, suggesting that there were either multiple rulers called Abi’el, or that the coinage was copied for several centuries.
The 2012 field season was marked by numismatic discoveries. Read:
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