They’re only 7 millimeters wide, but these coins appear to be a big find.
The Temple Mount Sifting Project recently discovered five rare coins dating from the 4th century B.C. This doubles the number unearthed so far and provides some of the earliest evidence of Jewish coin minting in Israel.
According to The Times of Israel, the coins come from around the period of time described in Ezra and Nehemiah.
The two biblical books record the Jewish people returning to Jerusalem and beginning the construction of the Second Temple by the decree of Cyrus the Great, the king of Persia.
The coins were minted when the Jews were allowed semiautonomous rule of a province called Yehud Medinata with Jerusalem as its capital under the Persian Empire.
“These were the first coins ever minted by Jews,” Zachi Dvira, co-director of the Temple Mount Sifting Project, told YNet. “They express the people’s return to their land after the Babylonian exile and their ability to hold and maintain diplomatic ties with the ruling empire.”
Three of the coins have visible markings, but two others have become too worn to read. The marked coins point to a Jewish culture heavily influenced by outside forces.
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Source: Baptist Press