web analytics
October 25, 2014 / 1 Heshvan, 5775
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Oldest Known Masks in the World on Display in Israel

Happy Purim? One of 11 of the oldest masks in the world on display at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.

Happy Purim? One of 11 of the oldest masks in the world on display at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.
Photo Credit: Israel Museum

A new display in Jerusalem is showcasing the oldest-known masks in the world, believed to have originated 9,000 years ago, long before Purim.

The 11 masks are made of stones and were discovered in the Judean desert near Jerusalem. Experts believe the masks were meant to look like skulls, with each displaying a unique personality via emotional expressions of shock or grinning.

“When you go back to objects that are this old, that are so much before the theology that becomes Judaism, Christianity and then Islam, to feel that there is a kind of a connection, that this is all part of a continuous story, is something that is pretty thrilling,” said Israel Museum director James Snyder, the Associated Press reported.

The custom of mask making and wearing dates back at least 25,000 years although no masks that old have been found, according to exhibit curator Debby Hershman, with the earliest masks most likely made of animal materials. Later, stone masks originated at the time when humans living in the Fertile Crescent adopted agriculture.

“It’s the most important revolution that ever happened,” Hershman said. The people who fashioned the masks, she said, “are actually the founders of civilization.”

About the Author: www.JNS.org is an independent, non-profit business resource and wire service covering Jewish news and Israel news for Jewish media throughout the English-speaking world.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

5 Responses to “Oldest Known Masks in the World on Display in Israel”

  1. Cheri Fistel says:

    There are holes around the sides of the mask that would mean that the mask was fastened on. Does the mouth allow for breathing, or the nose? I am afraid to say more.

  2. Maynard Miller says:

    That mask looks a lot like John Kerry.

  3. It looks heavy and uncomfortable, doesn't it? Of all the building materials they had, why would they use stone unless it was for a very special occasion/ceremony/ritual? Wouldn't it be nice to look back in time to see exactly what was going on in those moments? Hopefully, they'll uncover extra artifacts to shed light on their purpose.

    It reminds me of the death mask from the original Twilight Zone.

  4. Cheri Fistel says:

    I believe it was not for a celebritory for the wearer.

  5. Cheri Fistel, yeah, it doesn't look like it. And even though it has a smile, when you look at the sunken eyes, the smile suddenly looks more like a grimace of pain or a smile tempered by sadness.

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Do you know where your vegetables grow?
Not So Kosher Shemittah L’Mehadrin
Latest News Stories
Do you know where your vegetables grow?

At best, the Hareidim have been eating “Heter Mechira”. At worse, they’ve been eating vegetables grown in sewer water or pesticides from unknown and unsupervised Arabs fields.

Death to Terrorists

Israelis protest at Jerusalem’s Ammunition Hill train platform where an Arab terrorist ran over a group of commuters, killing a 3 month old baby. They are carrying signs, “Death to Terrorists”.

The U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv has prohibited its personnel from riding the Jerusalem light rail train from French Hill to Pisgat Ze’ev, in northern Jerusalem, for 30 days because of the terrorist attack this week that killed a three-year-old American-Israeli. It was a typical U.S. Embassy reaction – every time there is a serious […]

Bus on mountain road in Nepal near the area of a fatal crash Friday morning.

More hopes, prayers and tears one week after a deadly blizzard and avalanche.

They had to use a magnifying glass to read the letters.

Officials preach calm but are frantically trying tracing every step the doctor took in the city.

“God is trying to wake us up,” said the grandfather.

Former Presidential candidate Gov. Mitt Romney and former Vice Presidential candidate Sen. Joe Lieberman will address the inaugural Israeli American Council (IAC) National Conference in Washington next month. The IAC’s stated mission is “to build an active and giving Israeli-American community throughout the United States in order to strengthen the State of Israel.” The number […]

Dozens of Arab rioters attacked Jewish owned buildings in Jerusalem’s Old City.

J Street U blames Jews buying homes in Jerusalem for triggering Hamas terrorist’s murderous rampage.

Boko Haram kidnapped an additional 20 Nigerian girls.

A healthcare worker has returned to the US from West Africa suffering with symptoms resulting in testing for the Ebola virus at NYC’s Bellevue Hospital.

Despite PM Netanyahu’s vow to “assert sovereignty” over all parts of Jerusalem, Arabs continue to carry out potentially lethal rock attacks.

Israel’s prime minister and the mayor of Jerusalem met today with security brass over the terror attack that wounded 8 and killed a 3-month-old baby.

For the first time since the 1979 Islamic Revolution, Boeing Aerospace and Defense has made a sale to Iran.

Syria’s once-lucrative oil wells dissolve under U.S.-led coalition air strikes targeting the ISIS terror organization.

More Articles from JNS News Service
SanDisk

Dr. Eli Harari will receive the U.S. National Medal of Technology and Innovation.

Stem cell treatment developed by Israeli company BrainStorm Cell Therapeutics has been designated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a “fast-track” treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

The high-speed rail line has cost around $1.9 billion and is expected to carry passengers between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem in only 28 minutes.

“The truth will come to light… truth will come to light.” – Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice

Letter of protest charges SJP with “harassing and intimidating Jewish students.”

Three Syrian children wounded Saturday night in a lethal mortar shell attack in a courtyard where they were playing were brought to the Rebecca Sieff (Ziv) Hospital in Safed (Tsfat) for medical treatment. A 7-year-old boy was in serious condition with chest wounds and a broken hand; a 10-year-old boy was also in serious condition […]

Despite the vote’s difficult timing for observant Jews, a number of pro-Israel groups also turned out to support CUNY students and faculty who opposed the resolution.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/oldest-known-masks-in-the-world-on-display-in-israel/2014/03/13/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: