Ancient Limestone Weight Found Near Kosel

The weight, weighing in at 23 grams. (Shai Halevi, Israel Antiquities Authority)

An ancient weight made of limestone from the First Beis Hamikdash period, was discovered in an archaeological excavation by the Israel Antiquities Authority in conjunction with the Western Wall Heritage Foundation near the Kosel.

The weight, corresponding to the known measurement unit of two shekalim, was found during sifting of earthen fills by the City of David project that is close to completion and slated for inclusion in the tour of the Western Wall Tunnels.

Mordechai (Suli) Eliav, director of the Western Wall Heritage Foundation: “How exciting, in the month of Tishrei, whose symbol is the scales of justice, to find a souvenir from the First Temple period.

Actually now, when coming to the Kosel is so restricted due to the coronavirus pandemic, this finding strengthens the eternal connection between the Jewish nation, Yerushalayim and the Kosel, while offering us all encouragement.”

According to Dr. Barak Monnickendam-Givon and Tehillah Lieberman, directors of the excavation on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority: “The weight is dome-shaped with a flat base. On the top of the weight is an incised Egyptian symbol resembling a Greek gamma (γ), representing the abbreviated unit ‘shekel.’ Two incised lines indicate the double mass: two shekalim.”