Visit King Hezekiah's Tunnel

Modern radiometric dating has confirmed that the Siloam Tunnel in Jerusalem was excavated 700 years before the common era, thus safely attributing its construction to the Judean King Hezekiah, ISRAEL 21C reported today.

The tunnel is the first structure mentioned in the Bible (Kings II 20:20; Chronicles II 32:3,4) to be radiometrically dated; until now, the presumption that King Hezekiah constructed the Siloam tunnel was based upon the Biblical text itself and the characteristics of the Siloam inscription (housed in a museum in Istanbul), which does not name the tunnel's builder.

The study, conducted by Dr. Amos Frumkin of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem's Geography Department, Dr. Aryeh Shimron of the Israel Geological Survey, and Dr. Jeff Rosenbaum of Reading University in England, was published in the scientific journal Nature.

The complicated half-kilometer long tunneling project, which was constructed without using intermediate shafts, was an engineering innovation for its time. It brought water into the city of Jerusalem during its siege in 701 BCE by the Assyrians, under their King Sancherib. The new findings refute a recent claim suggesting a much later date for the tunnel.

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