Archaeologists Have Discovered The Giant Gates to Goliath’s Home, The Biblical City of Philistine Gath

According to The Jerusalem Post, archeologists at Bar-Ilan University, headed by Professor Aren Maeir, have discovered the fortifications and entrance gate to the biblical city of Gath in the Philistines, which was once the home of the giant Goliath.

The excavations of the ancient city of Gath, which was once the largest city in the land during the 10-19th century, are being conducted in the Tel Zafit national park, located in the Judean foothills between Jerusalem and Ashkelon. The ancient city was destroyed in 830 BCE by Hazael, the king of Damascus.

Writing on the team’s blog, Professor Maeir said: “It appears we have located a monumental city gate of the lower city of Gath.”

We still have to do a lot of cleaning, defining, digging and measuring to do, but it appears that there are really good chances we have truly landed on quite an astounding find.

Many lines of megalithic stone are appearing, with nice corners, features and even mud bricks.

While we are quite far from fully understanding this architectural complex, it is getting more and more impressive.

According to The Jerusalem Post, Professor Maeir said that the gate is among the largest ever found in Israel and provides substantial evidence that Gath was once one of the most influential cities in the region.

In addition to the gate, the team also found ironworks and a Philistine temple near the monumental gate, with some pottery and other finds typically associated with Philistine culture. Though the pottery represents a distinctive Philistine style, it also shows elements of Israelite technique, suggesting the cultures did influence each other in ways unrelated to war.

This mirrors the intense and multifaceted connections that existed between the Philistines and their neighbors,” Professor Maeir told Live Science. Though the Philistines were often seen as the absolute enemies of the Israelites and Judahites, he added, in reality, “it was much more complex“.

Remains of the Iron Age City Wall of Philistine Gath

Above:  This is a view of the remains of the Iron Age city wall of Philistine Gath. (Credit: Professor Aren Maeir, Director, Ackerman Family Bar-Ilan University Expedition to Gath)

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