The Saul A. Fox National Coin Center

imageIt is our great pleasure and honor to tell you that Saul A. Fox, a long-time friend and a great supporter of archaeological projects in Israel, agreed to support the establishment of the Saul A. Fox National Coin Center in the Jay and Jeanie Schottenstein National Campus for the Archaeology of Israel. The Saul A. Fox National Coin Center in the National Campus will become a Jerusalem landmark and a must-see stop for school children, archaeologists and researchers from all over the world, visitors to Israel and the Israeli public.

Saul Fox’s incredible gift to the Israel Antiquities Authority joins a number of significant gifts that are uniquely important towards realizing our goal, and together form the cornerstone of our efforts to reach out and educate the public about the rich and diverse archaeological heritage of the Land of Israel. When completed, the National Campus – an education, research and illumination complex designed by Architect Moshe Safdie – will provide easy access to the largest collection of the Archaeology of the Land of Israel in the world.

imageThe Saul A. Fox National Coin Center comprises of more than 130,000 coins in the IAA’s collections, spanning a period of some 2,300 years, from the invention of coinage in the 7th century BCE to the 17th century CE. The majority of coins are single finds from large and small excavations. In addition, the collection includes more than 150 hoards of gold, silver and bronze coins, beginning in the Persian period through to the Ottoman period. The collection's exceptional importance lies in the fact that the provenance of almost all the coins has been ascertained. Consequently, it constitutes one of the largest scientific numismatic data-bases of its kind in the world, ideally suited for in-depth study of coin-types, distribution patterns, and intra/inter-site circulation. The nucleus of the collection is comprised of a group of 10,000 coins acquired by numismatists from purchases and excavations between 1925 –1948.

The staff of the Saul A. Fox National Coin Center, Donald T. Ariel, Gabi Bijovsky and Robert Kool, perform a wide range of tasks, both scientific and curatorial. They specialize in the identification, registration and scientific publication of coins found in excavations. Additional duties include lectures and scientific consultation for researchers and archaeologists, preparation of coin exhibits in Israel and abroad, and preparation of educational material. The Center enjoys real-time access to all new discoveries in the numismatic field in Israel. It also benefits from computerized access to a unique, and probably the largest, database of provenanced coins in the world. The Center publishes a wide range of detailed catalogues, synthetic analyses and articles related to monetary history. Ranging from short catalogues of isolated dig finds to thorough comprehensive site analyses, these reports are essential in the creation of the chronological underpinning for understanding many of the classical archaeological sites in the country. In addition, in-dep

imageOne of the unique and fascinating features of the Saul Fox National Coin Center in the National Campus will be the rare opportunity for the public to visit objects in the viewable housing, as well as to observe the work performed in the conservation and restoration laboratories by our coins conservators. This remarkable feature is an important and dramatic example of the IAA’s mission to provide increasingly enhanced accessibility to its huge collections.

The Israel Antiquities Authority is the pre-eminent organization in the fields of Biblical and Israeli archaeology, custodian of nearly 2 million objects, among them 15,000 Dead Sea Scrolls, the largest collection in the world of the Dead Sea Scrolls. It is in the process of establishing the Schottenstein National Campus for the Archaeology of Israel including the World Center for the Dead Sea Scrolls and the National Center for State Treasures in the center of Jerusalem.

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