(YNETNEWS) — During excavations at the foot of the Temple Mount, which were conducted this summer, Hebrew University of Jerusalem archaeologist Dr. Eilat Mazar discovered two bundles of treasure containing 36 gold coins, gold and silver jewelry, and a gold medallion with the menorah (Temple candelabrum) symbol etched into it.
Also etched into the 10-centimeter (4-inch) medallion are a shofar (ram’s horn) and a Torah scroll.
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Mazar, a third-generation archaeologist working at the Hebrew University’s Institute of Archaeology, directs excavations on the City of David’s summit and at the Temple Mount’s southern wall, the Ophel area.
Calling the find “a breathtaking, once-in-a-lifetime discovery,” Dr. Mazar said: “We have been making significant finds from the First Temple Period in this area, a much earlier time in Jerusalem’s history, so discovering a golden seven-branched Menorah from the seventh century CE at the foot of the Temple Mount was a complete surprise.”