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Greek dedicatory inscription from the synagogue of Theodotus

UnknownHerodian1st century BCE

The Israel Museum, Jerusalem

The Israel Museum, Jerusalem

This inscription from the days of Herod, uncovered near the Temple Mount, is one of the most important finds from Jerusalem. It mentions Theodotos son of Vettenos, priest and head of a Synagogue who was also the son of the head of the synagogue, who built a synagogue not far from the Temple. The inscription demonstrates that the institution of the synagogue existed before the destruction of the Temple. Synagogues had not yet become substitutes for the Temple and its rites, and would have therefore filled other religious and social roles. "Theodotos, son of [or: of the family of] Vettenos, a priest and head of the synagogue, son of the head of the synagogue, who was also the son of the head of the synagogue, [re]built the synagogue for the reading of the Law and for the study of the precepts, as well as the hospice and the chambers and the bathing-establishment, for lodging those who need them, from abroad; it (the synagogue) was founded by his ancestors and the elders and Simonides."

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Details

  • Title: Greek dedicatory inscription from the synagogue of Theodotus
  • Creator: Unknown
  • Date Created: Herodian1st century BCE
  • Location: Jerusalem
  • Type: Inscription
  • Rights: Israel Antiquities Authority, Photo © The Israel Museum, Jerusalem / by David Harris
  • External Link: Israel Museum, Jerusalem
  • Medium: Limestone
  • Dimensions: L. 75 cm, H. 43 cm, W. 22 cm
  • Curator: Mevorah, David

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