Dead Sea Scroll fragments

by Jay Rhoden

According to an AP report, Israeli archaeologists at the Israel Antiquities Authority announced on Tuesday, March 16, 2021 have announced the discovery of new Dead Sea Scroll fragments. The fragments are being held in a conservation lab in Jerusalem. The fragments were discovered in a desert cave and believed to have been hidden during a Jewish revolt against Rome nearly 1,900 years ago.

The approximately eighty fragments of parchment contain Greek text from the books of Zechariah and Nahum. Based on the style of writing, the fragments have been dated around the first century based by the Israel Antiquities Authority.

Assuming the fragments are found to be genuine, they will be the first to have been found in archaeological excavations in Israel in 60 years. We understand the fragments are from a site in southern Israel known as the “Cave of Horror” located in a remote canyon approximately 40 kilometers south of Jerusalem.

The name “Cave of Horror” is derived from the fact that approximately 40 human skeletons were found in this cave during excavations in the 1960s. Previously this same cache of documents is said to have contained a Greek translation of the Twelve Minor Prophets. It is unclear why the existence of these additional fragments are only being announced now. Perhaps a fresh search through the fragments has discovered new matches, or perhaps new technology has enabled better sorting and analysis of the text.