Archaeologists believe they have found the biblical city of Shaaraim [meaning 'Two Gates'] that is mentioned in the story of the battle of David and the Philistine giant, Goliath.
Excavations at Khirbet Qeiyafa overlooking the Elah Valley southwest of Jerusalem uncovered an ancient fortified city around a decade ago.
But it was not until the second year of excavations in 2008 that archaeologists realized they had stumbled upon what was possibly the earliest physical evidence of a Davidic city dating back to the 11th Century BCE.
Over the course of seven years, excavations revealed a walled city with two equally large and dominant gates - a highly unusual feature for a relatively small city. The Elah Valley, where the Bible describes the encounter between David and Goliath, divided the lands of theites and the Philistines. When archaeologists excavated the gates they were reminded of the ancient city of Shaaraim that featured in the famous story.
“When the Phi·lisʹtines saw that their mighty one had died, they fled. At that the men of Israel and of Judah rose and broke into shouting and pursued the Phi·lisʹtines all the way from the valley to the gates of Ekʹron, and the slain of the Phi·lisʹtines lay fallen along the road from Shaʹa·raʹim, as far as Gath and Ekʹron. (1 Samuel 17:51, 52) [read more…]