Bible and archaeology news
Archaeologists excavating in the central region of Golan Heights in Israel have uncovered a large Roman-period public structure that may have served as a synagogue. Constructed of hewn stones, the building had two parallel rows of benches. The remains of columns as well as pottery sherds were also found during the excavation. Field director Michael Osband of the Institute of Archaeology at Bar Ilan University has cautiously identified the structure as a synagogue.
“This is a monumental public building in a village located in a Jewish area—we don’t know of any other purpose for such a building except a synagogue,” Osband told Haaretz.
The excavations were conducted at the site of Khirbet Majdouliya, which was abandoned for an as-yet unknown reason at the end of the third or beginning of the fourth century C.E. If the public structure at Khirbet Majdouliya is indeed a synagogue, it would contribute to our understanding of Roman-period synagogues in northern Israel.
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