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Menorah

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Menorah
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Photo Comments

View of the remains of a Menorah (seven branch candelabra) that was carved into the plaster of one of the houses that Nahum Avigad excavated in the Jewish Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem.

This is the oldest representation of a Menorah in existence—it was carved into the plaster prior to the house's destruction by the Romans in 70 CE.  It was carved while the Temple and Menorah were in existence and in a house where a priest who served in the Temple officiated.

Notice the "flames" on the top of the Menorah, the tripod that supports it and the "knob" decorations.  On the right side of the Menorah, note the possible reconstructions of what might have been the representations of the Table for Showbread and the Incense Altar.  All three of these objects were in the "Holy Place" of the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem.

It is another indicator, along with stone vessels, ritual baths, and lack of pig bones, that Jews inhabited the houses that are now displayed in the Wohl Archaeological Museum.

Because in a nearby, so­–called "burnt house," a stone weight with the name of a priestly family, "Kathros," engraved on it was found, many believe that Jewish priests lived in these houses.

This original is now in the Israel Museum.