"Son of the High Priest" Inscription

imageIsrael Antiquities Authority archaeologists have unearthed part of a sarcophagus cover with the Hebrew inscription "son of the High Priest" and dating to the Second Temple period.

The 60 cm by 48 cm (2 feet by 19 inch) fragment of limestone bearing the Hebrew inscription "Ben Hacohen Hagadol" does not specify to which priest it refers.

imageHowever, it should probably be identified with one of the priests that officiated in the Temple between the years 30 and 70 C.E." said the archaeologist who discovered the fragment. Among the high priests who served during that period were Yosef Bar Kayafa, or Caiaphas, Theophilus (Yedidiya) Ben Hanan, Simon Ben Boethus, and Hanan Ben Hanan.

imageThe well preserved fragment was believed to have originated in an estate outside Jerusalem which belonged to one of the high priests who served in the Temple. "One can assume that the son of the high priest passed away for some unknown reason at the time when his father still officiated as the high priest in Jerusalem," said the archaeologist who discovered the inscription.

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