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Archaeologists excavating at an ancient copper-smelting factory in the Timna Valley, believed by some to be the mines of King Solomon, have uncovered a gatehouse that dates to the tenth century BC. The fortified gatehouse and animal stables which were studied reveal a highly organized defensive system. Excavators also analyzed the well-preserved dung from the stables and discovered the remains of hay and grapes which originated from hundreds of miles away on the Mediterranean coast. The archaeologists believe this is evidence of a network of trade within the region. These latest findings match earlier analysis from 2014 of organic material and textiles which indicate a sophisticated society. Despite the claim of minimalists, this is further evidence of an organized and complex tenth-century BC culture thriving in the regions of Israel and Edom, just as the Bible describes, as well as of the military conflicts recorded in Scripture between the Israelites and Edomites in the Arava Valley. In fact, some researchers have suggested that copper may have been the resource at stake in some of these battles. 

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