Israel Discovers 10,000-Year-Old House Near Jerusalem

Oldest structure ever found in the Judean lowlands southwest of Jerusalem

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Israel’s transportation company has uncovered a 10,000-year-old house and a 6,000-year-old temple during a routine dig to expand one of the nation’s highways.

Workers unearthed a the house, the oldest structure ever found in the Judean lowlands southwest of Jerusalem, while digging for the planned expansion of Route 38, according to the Israel Antiquities Authority. The house dates back to the Pre-Pottery Neolithic period, signifying the transition of society to “permanent dwellings,” or settling down rather than traveling in search of food, Times of Israel reports.

State-owned Netivei Israel Company, which is in charge of the highway expansion, also said it discovered what is believed to be a 6,000-year-old cultic temple from the Chalcolithic period.

“We can see distinctly a settlement that gradually became planned, which included [streets] and buildings that were extremely impressive from the standpoint of their size and the manner of their construction,” the Antiquities Authority said in a statement Monday.

The two organizations invited the public to visit the historic site in Eshtaol on Wednesday.

[Times of Israel]