Byzantine-era church discovered by Israeli farmers

Farmers clearing land in Israel unearthed the remains of a church building from the Byzantine period.

The church is believed to have been built in the late fifth or sixth century, and is decorated with “breathtakingly beautiful mosaics,” according to a description from the Israel Antiquities Authority…

In a nutshell, the Byzantines were the eastern half of the Roman Empire following the collapse of Rome and the western half in the 5th century A.D.

Christianity existed throughout the Byzantine world, although it was significantly corrupted from its simple 1st century forms. This recently discovered church, while beautiful, illustrates how Christianity was shifting from its original spiritual focus to one of evolving physical grandeur.

On a side note, it is said that everyone in Israel is an amateur archaeologist. It is literally true that some ancient relic or site may be discovered almost anywhere in the country.

This CNN article has good information and a translation of a dedicatory inscription from the mosaics, but the story has been circulated in other news outlets.

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About LukeChandler

Luke holds an M.A. in Ancient and Classical History and has been an adjunct professor at Florida College in Temple Terrace, Florida. Luke and his wife Melanie have five children. He serves as a minister in English and Spanish with the North Terrace Church of Christ and participates annually in archaeological excavations in Israel. Luke also leads tours to Europe and the Bible Lands.
This entry was posted in General Archaeology and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Byzantine-era church discovered by Israeli farmers

  1. Marshal Ray says:

    I hope they do continue the excavation and perhaps open it to the public someday. Fascinating work they’re doing, just like the mosaics themselves.

  2. Gardner says:

    Always enjoy your blogs when I have time to check them out!

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