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The excavations at El Araj - one of the leading candidates as the site of Bethsaida - have unearthed more evidence of first-century Jewish occupation, items related to the fishing industry, and a Byzantine church. Numerous artifacts, including the handle of a Galilean cooking pot and two spouts from Herodian oil lamps, testify to occupation at the site during the first century BC. In addition, hundreds of lead fishing weights have been discovered, as well as a chalk mold for making lead fishing weights. Finally, the stunning mosaic floors of a Byzantine church were uncovered for the first time in almost 1500 years. A limestone frieze that once decorated a window or door and several gold-gilded glass tesserae were also found. They excavators believe they may be uncovering the remains of the Byzantine Church of the Apostles that was supposedly built over the house of Peter and Andrew in Bethsaida, which was described by Willabald, bishop of Bavaria, in 725 AD.

Off-site Link:

- https://www.elarajexcavations.com/2018-dig-updates/categories/2019-dig-updates

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ABRT 28 | 8/1/2019