A group of Israeli high school girls discovered an Egyptian Scarab amulet estimated to be nearly 3,300-years-old on Wednesday morning while on a field trip to an archaeological site in the Galilee.
“One can learn a lot during a history lesson in school, but there’s nothing like actually holding history in one’s hands,” Gilad Zinamon, an education coordinator with the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA), told Tazpit Press Service (TPS).
The girls who made the discovery were part of a large group of students who have been participating in archaeological excavations in six different sites around the Galilee. These field trips are a Ministry of Education project that aims to bring Israeli 10th graders out of the classroom and into the field in order to increase the student’s involvement with various public projects in neighboring communities.
“Most of the students told me that this was the very first time they encountered the world of archaeology. So it is thrilling to see their interest, curiosity, and now their success at it,” Zinamon said.
Tzipori itself is a village that doubles as an archaeological site located in the Galilee region of Israel. The site has provided rich and diverse historical and archaeological findings that span from the Paleolithic and Neolithic periods, all the way up to the early Ottoman period.
According to the IAA, the young school girls were helping archaeologists in Zipori dig and sift through the sand when they came upon the amulet.
“It was a very exciting find and the girls’ eyes sparkled with excitement,” Nimrod Getzov, the excavations director at the Tzipori site, told TPS.
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Dr. Daphna Ben-Tor, curator of Egyptian archaeology at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, identified the item as an ancient Egyptian Scarab amulet, roughly 3,300-years-old.
“This Scarab comes from the Egyptian Golden Age and belongs to the time of the 19th dynasty, most likely during the reign of Ramses,” Ben-Tor told TPS.
“Many such sacred scarab amulets were found around Israel, demonstrating the cultural, economic, and political Egyptian influence over Canaan during the Bronze Age,” she explained.
According to the IAA, it is still too early to determine how and when this Scarab amulet ended up in Tzipori since the discovery was only made this morning and requires further study.