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Excavations at Beit She'arim in northern Israel have revealed a previously unknown Roman-era gate structure along an ancient road leading into the town. The gate system was built of limestone blocks, and included postholes for doors as well as a circular tower. Despite the fact that Beit She'arim literally means 'House of Gates,' the town was believed to have been too small to have been fortified. While Beit She'arim may have been insignificant in size, it was an important town in the second century AD, as it was the headquarters for the Sanhedrin, the Jewish ruling council, and was where the Mishna (Jewish oral law) was compiled. 

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