According to National Geographic, an ancient temple has been discovered in southeast Turkey, on the site of an ongoing archaeological dig, near the border of Syria. The temple sits at a location that is believed to have been a cultural and economic crossroads for centuries, and is expected to provide valuable insights into the lives of the people that inhabited the region 3000 years ago.
The find is being hailed as a major discovery that calls into question some common beliefs about that era in Turkey. Most historians believe that a “dark age” descended on the area around 1200 to 900 BC. It has been widely accepted that it was a very turbulent time that put an end to cultural and political development, but archaeologists found evidence in the temple that seems to refute that. They now believe that the ancient civilization that built the temple not only survived, but possibly even thrived, pushing its language, art, and political structure forward.
Inside the temple, which dates back to the time of King Solomon, researchers discovered large, ceremonial slabs carved with hieroglyphs in an ancient and long dead language which was once spoken throughout the region. Further inside, in the temple’s main room, which had suffered major fire damage at some point, they found silver and gold foil inlays, along with remnants of bronze and ivory.
I’m always fascinated by stories like this one. It is amazing that in the 21st century we’re still discovering new things hidden around the globe. It makes you wonder what else it out there, just waiting for us to stumble across it.