Palestinian Muslims are part of an ongoing international effort to renovate the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, which scholars believe is the birthplace of Jesus Christ.
The Associated Press said in a report on Tuesday that the team of Palestinian and international experts are leading the biggest restoration the historical church has received in close to 600 years. The restoration includes the removal of centuries of dust and structural repairs to windows and the rooftop, with workers being careful to preserve artwork and mosaics dating back to the Crusades. more >>
The Aleppo Codex, the oldest surviving copy of the Hebrew Bible that some experts believe all versions of the Old Testament stem from, has been recognized by UNESCO as an important world treasure.
I24News reported that the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization added the millennium-old Codex earlier this week to its International Memory of the World Register, which honors some of the most important discoveries relating to human history.
Adolfo Roitman, the head curator of the Shrine of the Book Museum in Jerusalem, which holds the Codex, explained its significance, stating that all current versions of the Old Testament stem, "in one way or another, from this ancient manuscript." more >>
A team of Israeli archaeologists have criticized plans to build a non-Orthodox prayer area at the Western Wall, arguing that the addition will destroy antiquities and Jewish history.
Nine prominent archaeologists recently penned a letter to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, imploring him to stop plans to build a plaza at the Western Wall that would allow for non-Orthodox gatherings, including mixed-gender prayer, to take place.
The new proposal is part of a larger plan to ease tensions between the country's Orthodox and liberal populations. more >>
Turkish archaeologists excavating the world's largest known underground city in the Cappadocia region of central Turkey have found a fifth century underground church with scenes of Jesus rising into the sky.
"This place is even bigger than the other historical churches in Cappadocia. It was built underground and has original frescoes that have survived to this day," the mayor of Nevsehir, Hasan Unver, told Hurriyet Daily News.
"We didn't even think of finding such a structure when we first started works. But excavations and cleaning work are continuing and we hope to find new data relating to the history of Cappadocia," the mayor said. more >>
For years, some scholars have doubted the historical accuracy of the fourth Gospel. But a dip in the pool of Siloam will cure that.
The Gospel of John Chapter 9 tells the story of Jesus' healing of a man born blind. After telling his disciples that the man's blindness had nothing to do with either the man's sins or those of his parents, Jesus applied mud to the man's eyes and told him to wash it off at the Pool of Siloam.
Since at least the fifth century, Christians had identified a spot in Jerusalem as the Pool of Siloam and the site of the miracle. But it was not until a decade ago that archaeologists found what they are certain is the ancient pool of Siloam. more >>
Czech archaeologists have discovered an ancient boat used for a wealthy funeral procession near the famous pyramids in Cairo, Egypt.
Miroslav Barta, who oversaw the Czech-led archaeological dig near the Abusir pyramids for the Czech Institute of Archaeology at Charles University, told the AFP that the funeral boat was likely built for a wealthy, prominent member of society due to its proximity to the well-known pyramids.
The wooden, 4,500-year-old boat was found near one of the pyramids' Mastaba, or large tomb meant to house the dead. more >>