May 7, 2007
Evil King Unearthed
Hebrew University prof digs up King Herod the Great.
The Israeli newspaper Haaretz broke the news Monday night of a stunning archaeological discovery, scooping the press conference Hebrew University had planned for Tuesday.
Ehud Netzer, a Hebrew University professor, has discovered the tomb of King Herod the Great - the same Herod that according to Matthew 2 tried to kill the infant Jesus by massacring all the male children under two in the region of Bethlehem. Herod's cruelty to his own family was so well known that even Augustus Caesar said he would rather be Herod's dog than his son.
Netzer has been looking for Herod's grave at the site known as Herodium, some 12 km miles south of Jerusalem, since 1972. The ancient Jewish historian Josephus had named Herodium as the site of Herod's burial, but until now, the grave had escaped detection.
Herodium was a fortified palace, refuge, and mausoleum. The site was destroyed by the Romans in AD 71.
The Haaretz story is at http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/856784.html. More details will be released at Tuesday's press conference. Archaeology buffs should watch the Haaretz web site and that of Hebrew University.