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A new study analyzing fish teeth points to an extensive trade in fish between Egypt and Canaan some 3500 years ago. The researchers studied 100 teeth from the gilthead sea bream found at 12 different archaeological sites in the southern Levant (modern-day Israel). By analyzing the content of oxygen isotopes in the tooth enamel of the sea bream, they were able to determine the salinity of the water from which the fish came. The results showed that ¾ of the fish came from water that had a higher salt ratio than is normally found in the Mediterranean Sea. Researchers believe the fish were caught in hypersaline water of the Bardawil Lagoon on the northern Sinai coast, and then were transported from Egypt into Canaan by both land and sea. The study demonstrates that from the Late Bronze Age through to the Byzantine Period there was a significant trade in fish between Egypt and the southern Levant.

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