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A 3,000-year-old Egyptian-style scarab was recently discovered by a tour guide leading a group of students on a field trip in Azor near Tel Aviv. The scarab is inscribed with the images of two figures, one standing before a seated figure. According to Dr. Amir Golani of the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA), the standing figure has an elongated head, which may represent an Egyptian pharaoh investing authority in the king of a Canaanite city-state, the seated figure. This would seem to corroborate the situation early in the Late Bronze Age, when Egypt controlled the southern Levant. However, there appears to be some confusion regarding the dating of the artifact. Press reports indicated that it is 3,000 years old, but then linked it to the Late Bronze Age. However, the Late Bronze Age was from 1500 to 1200 BC in the Levant; if the scarab is 3,000 years old, it would be from early in the Iron Age. Moreover, the IAA noted that, based on the quality of the craftsmanship, the scarab does not appear to be Egyptian, but was likely locally made. The scarab requires further study and more-secure dating before it can be interpreted accurately.


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