Ahi'el Ostracon (A)

The ostracon is one of the two shards of pottery found in the House of Ahi'el, that bears the name of Ahi'el. The script on the shard has five partial lines and is written in an early Hebrew script dating to the seventh century BCE.

circa 650 BCE

The script reads (translation may not be accurate) from right to left
belongs to
Ahi'el (Acht)
Ahi'el (Acht)
Inside (TS)

circa 550 BCE

Jerusalem was originally built around the Gihon Spring yet at the time of Solomon it expanded along a spur to the southeast, an area now titled "the City of David". Archaeologists found a series of structures here, one belonging to a person named "Ahiel" identified by a piece of pottery, the remains of a storage jar on which his name was written. The house was a typical 4 room Israelite house in which were found cosmetics and other housewares the result of the devastation of 586BC. This small piece of pottery testifies to one who witnessed the sacking of Jerusalem and subsequent exile of its captives. The person who wrote this text witnessed this event. Remains of the house of Ahiel belonging to a man named Ahiel, as seen from the east. This four-room house (illustration) was built into and over the Millo around 550 BC in the days of young Josiah and Jeremiah. The staircase to the left (seen in photos below) would have provided access to the home’s flat roof. The lower floor is where animals would have been kept.


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