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2,000 year old Temple era key found in Jerusalem

By Mason White 3:33 PM May 8, 2013
Ancient key found in Jerusalem 

By: Sarah Weiss
Diggers found an exciting item recently while digging in Jerusalem, according to a statement released by the Israel Antiquities Authority.

Archaeologists working in Jerusalem have discovered a 2,000 year old stone mine, along with an iron key and masonry tools dating from the same period, the Israel Antiquities Authority announced Wednesday.

The large first century quarry adjacent to the modern area of ​​Ramat Shlomo, have been active at the time of the Second Temple in Jerusalem, archaeologists say.

Some of the stones were cut from rock more than two meters long. It was likely carried down on an ancient road discovered in the vicinity, to the walled city in the south, where they have been used in the construction of monumental buildings.
Also found at the site was an iron key.

“The key is, and probably was used to open a door about 2,000 years ago, is curved and has teeth. We can only assume that it might have fallen from the pocket of one of the masons,” archaeologist Irina Zilberbod, the excavation director, said in the Israel Antiquities Authority statement.

Archaeologists also found peaks and metal shims used to cut the stones carved from the surrounding rock.
The digging and the excavation at the site is designed to allow the construction of a new road.

“This is a very exciting find. I love to see all the ancient items constantly discovered in and around Jerusalem. It shows the strong Jewish connection to the State of Israel,” Esther Gordon, 43, of Beit Shemesh, Israel told after seeing images of the ancient key.

Ramat Shlomo, is an ultra-Orthodox Jewish neighborhood, which was built in part on the West Bank annexed to the Jerusalem municipality after the 1967 war.