'Horrible' discovery in the manure pit of the richest mansions in Jerusalem 2700 years ago

The study, by Tel Aviv University and the Israel Antiquities Authority, focused on intestinal worm eggs found in the cistern under the limestone toilet of a magnificent century-old royal residence. 7th BC.

Picture 1 of 'Horrible' discovery in the manure pit of the richest mansions in Jerusalem 2700 years ago
The researchers analyzed samples taken from a cistern located below the limestone toilet. (Source: Yoli Schwartz, Israel Antiquities Authority)

These 2,700-year-old eggs are believed to be from roundworms, tapeworms, flagellates and pinworms. Lead researcher Dr Dafna Langgut, of Tel Aviv University's Department of Archeology and Ancient Near Eastern Culture, said: 'Intestinal worms are parasites that cause symptoms such as abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting. , diarrhea and itching. Some are especially dangerous for children and can lead to malnutrition, developmental delays, nervous system damage and even death."

Picture 2 of 'Horrible' discovery in the manure pit of the richest mansions in Jerusalem 2700 years ago
Intestinal parasite eggs were discovered from the sediment below the stone toilet in Jerusalem. (Source: Eitan Kremer)

Research published in the International Journal of Paleontology shows that at a time before humans became conscious of hygiene and the development of modern medicine, the life of the upper classes in ancient Jerusalem there are still many problems. Although they are rich, they cannot completely treat these diseases related to intestinal bacteria. This is thought to be the reason for the population problem at that time.

Poor hygiene conditions, not to mention contaminated food and drinking water, have the potential to spread parasites, not to mention the lack of awareness among people to wash their hands regularly. During this period, human excrement was used to fertilize crops and meat was improperly cooked.

Picture 3 of 'Horrible' discovery in the manure pit of the richest mansions in Jerusalem 2700 years ago
Dr. Dafna Langgut said intestinal diseases had a significant impact on people at that time. (Source: Sasha Flit, Tel Aviv University)

The researchers confirmed that intestinal diseases affected people who used to live in the mansion, which was discovered at the Armon Hanatziv Promenade in Jerusalem. However, the head of the excavation, Mr. Yaakov Billig also said: "The toilet was considered a symbol of status and power. Because only the rich could afford to build a toilet." .

"It is interesting to see that something as common to us today as a toilet was a luxury item in Judea times," added Israel Antiquities Authority director Eli Eskosido.

Previously, archaeologists found at this supposed toilet a square block of limestone with a hole in the middle, similar to a toilet bowl. Below is a septic tank hewn out of rock.

Picture 4 of 'Horrible' discovery in the manure pit of the richest mansions in Jerusalem 2700 years ago
The excavation site is in a lavish mansion, facing southeast of Jerusalem's Old City.

Archaeologists also found evidence that the garden in this mansion also had many ornamental plants, fruit trees and looked directly to the southeast of Jerusalem's Old City.

In addition, there is a clay pot and animal bones from the time of Solomon's Temple (the first Jewish temple) in the manure pit. According to a spokesman, after these initial results, scientists will continue to analyze what is obtained from the crater.

Through this, Israeli officials hope to gain more information about the diet of the people at that time as well as the diseases that once affected the ancient world.

The first Jewish temple, built by King Solomon, was destroyed by King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon in 586 BC. The temple was rebuilt and remodeled (second Jewish temple) but was further destroyed by the Romans in 70.

Picture 5 of 'Horrible' discovery in the manure pit of the richest mansions in Jerusalem 2700 years ago
The Wailing Wall is considered the most important holy site for Jews.

Today, the second temple only has walls left. These walls are commonly known as the Wailing Walls and are the most important holy places in Judaism.

« PREV
NEXT »