For the first time in over 60 years, researchers have discovered a cave near the Dead Sea that once housed ancient scrolls, renewing archaeologists’ hopes that additional Dead Sea Scrolls may be waiting to be found.
Seventy years ago, Bedouin shepherds famously discovered ancient scrolls within caves near the Dead Sea. Widely recognized as one of history’s most important archaeological finds, the hundreds of Dead Sea Scrolls found within the caves near Qumran gave scholars an unprecedented collection of ancient biblical texts—some of which were 1,000 years older than any other such manuscripts in existence.
Until last week, most scholars believed that all the caves associated with the Dead Sea Scrolls had been identified and explored. However, in a surprising turn of events, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem announced on Wednesday that archaeologists discovered evidence of additional Dead Sea Scrolls in a cave on the cliffs near Qumran.
“Until now, it was believed that only 11 caves had contained scrolls,” a statement from the university said. “With the discovery of this cave, scholars have now suggested that it would be numbered as Cave 12.”
Described as a “surprising discovery” that represents “a milestone in Dead Sea Scroll research,” the excavation of Cave 12 revealed that it once contained Dead Sea Scrolls, but that the scrolls were looted by Bedouins in the mid-1950s.
This article continues at [Christian News Network] Historic Cave Discovery in Israel Renews Hopes of Finding More Dead Sea Scrolls