Israel on Wednesday unveiled hundreds of archaeological objects discovered during marine excavations in the Mediterranean.

A gold ring that remained underwater for 1,700 years and engraved with the figure of the Good Shepherd, allegory of Jesus, was notably found.

The objects were discovered in recent months off Caesarea, between the Israeli cities of Tel Aviv and Haifa, where two ships sank 1,700 and 600 years ago, the Israel Antiquities Authority (AIA) said.

Marine excavations have uncovered an octagonal gold ring, adorned with a green gemstone engraved with the image of a young shepherd in a tunic, who wears a ram or a sheep on his shoulder.

According to Helena Sokolov, AIA Custodian of Coins who has studied the ring, the image of the Good Shepherd, who portrays Jesus as a shepherd who guides his people, is rarely featured on a ring although it is widespread. in Christian art.

Being small, the jewel probably belonged to a woman, she estimated.

A ring bearing an early Christian depiction of Jesus as a shepherd has been found along with other artifacts from centuries-old shipwrecks off the coast of Israel, archeologists said

- Reuters (@Reuters) December 22, 2021

Hundreds of pieces also discovered

Its discovery off Caesarea is not surprising since the city was once the local capital of the Roman Empire in the 3rd century and its port was essential, explained Helena Sokolov.

"At that time, Christianity was in its infancy but was undeniably developing, especially in mixed cities like Caesarea," she said.

The Antiquities Authority has also unearthed hundreds of silver and bronze coins dating from Roman times, and hundreds of other coins dating from the 14th century, specifically from the Mamluk era.

A red gemstone was also discovered, along with pottery and figurines.

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  • Jewelry

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