Archaeologists excavating at Tell es-Safi (biblical Gath) believe they have discovered the spot where Hazael, the Aramean king of Syria, breached the city walls. The Bible records that “Hazael king of Syria went up and fought against Gath and took it” (2 Ki 12:17). Over the years, the excavation team at Gath has unearthed evidence of Hazael’s destruction (ca. 830 BC), in numerous places throughout the Philistine city. This year, while excavating near the “Water Gate,” an entrance that was used to access the local well and a stream, the team discovered that a section of the wall was missing. The Water Gate, like the rest of the city, was heavily fortified, with walls that were more than three meters thick, constructed of mudbrick on top of massive stone foundations. Next to the gate, the walls are missing for a 10-meter section. The team at Tell es-Safi noted that it appears that someone worked hard to remove the foundation and the brick wall, and they believe that it was here, at the lowest part of the city, Hazael and his army breached the walls of Gath.
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