Near the capital of the desert and the south, juat 5 minutes
from Omer design center, you can see one of the recently discovered adventures
of the ancient world. I'm talking about the famous well of ancient Beer-Sheva,
and the old city.
Tel Sheva is a well designed city, with all facilities
and characteristics of the Israeli Empire in the times of the first kings,
probably Rehav'am or some time after him. The beautiful gates of the city
and the yard in front of the gates draw a clear picture of what is "Hutzot",
like mentioned in the stories of Ah'av and Aram. This was the market, and
in this place the court of the people sitted and conducted trials, like
in Ah'av consult with the people and Avshalom's speaches in the gates court.
Outside the city you can see the amazing well, built
in the end of the Kna'anite period,about 60-70m deep !! This must be one
of the greatest achievements of the ancient world, concerning water projects.
In the center of the city,there are two large buildings:
the mayor's house (Beit ha-Moshel), originally two floors, and the large
storage rooms, which were the center of a discussion between two great
archeologists: Yohanan Aharoni, the excavator, and Yigael Yadin. Yigael
Yadin was convinced they were horse houses for the large anount of carriages,
but the excavator thought these were storages romms. By the way, these
two great men disputed over almost everything. They fought each other furiously
on the scientific commentaries and books. They were enemies, but respected
each other's opinion.
If you climb up the nice tower (not needed, it's such
a high place...), you will see what's calles "Israeli House", or
"the house of the 4 spaces". This was prooved to be the most tipical characteristic
of the Israel Empire throught the ages. A house with one 3 vertical corridors
and a horizontal one connecting them.
More interesting is the water project of the city,
a "mashpech" bult in stone, over 7-8m height, planned to supply the
city's water. It has a hidden exit to out of the walls, brilliantly planned.
It is a dream, but possibly next year we will be able to visit the underground
water tunnels, interesting like in Meggido.
There is also a brick factory, and the restoration
of the city is ongoing all the time. You can see an ancient wall with new
bricks added, and it makes a strange sensation of continuity...
How to get there:
What else to see:
Drive to Beer-Sheva, take the road to Omer, and just before
Omer, turn right (south) to Tel-Sheva. 3 minutes later you will see the
Tel Arad (probably next time).