Road built by Pontius Pilate uncovered in Jerusalem

A detail of Ecco Homo (Behold the Man) by Antonio Ciseri, oil on canvas, circa 1860-80 (Wikimedia)

A 2,000-year-old “lost” street built in Jerusalem by Pontius Pilate has been uncovered for the first time since the city was sacked by the Romans in 70 AD. Source: The Independent UK.

The ancient walkway most likely used by pilgrims as they made their way to worship at the Temple Mount was first discovered in 1894 by British archaeologists in the “City of David” within the walls of Jerusalem.

Researchers have now found more than 100 coins beneath the paving stones that date the street to around the year 31AD. The finding provides strong evidence that the street was commissioned by Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor of the province of Judaea, best known for being the official who presided over the trial of Jesus and ordered his crucifixion.

After six years of extensive archaeological excavations, a team from the Israel Antiquities Authority and Tel Aviv University have uncovered a 220m section of the ancient street.

The road ascends from the Pool of Siloam in the south to the Temple Mount. Both monuments are hugely significant to followers of Judaism and Christianity.

The excavation revealed more than 100 coins trapped beneath paving stones. The latest coins were dated between 17AD and 31AD, which provides firm evidence that work began and was completed during the time that Pilate governed Judea.

Study co-author Donald Ariel, an archaeologist and coin expert with the Israel Antiquities Authority, said: “Dating using coins is very exact.

“As some coins have the year in which they were minted on them, what that means is that if a coin with the date on it is found beneath the street, the street had to be built in the same year or after that coin had been minted, so any time after," Dr Ariel said.

“However, our study goes further, because statistically, coins minted some 10 years later are the most common coins in Jerusalem, so not having them beneath the street means the street was built before their appearance, in other words only in the time of Pilate.”

FULL STORY

2000-year-old 'lost' street built by Pontius Pilate uncovered in Jerusalem (The Independent UK)

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