Photo Credit: courtesy IAA / Gilad Chinmon
8th century CE gold coin discovered in IAA excavation in Kafr Kana.

A rare gold coin dating back to 8 CE, has been unearthed in an excavation taking place in Kafr Kana in the Lower Galilee, the Israel Antiquities Authority reported Tuesdsay.

The coin was found by two teenagers who were volunteering at the dig, which was being carried out prior to construction of a parking lot in the town.

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The 1,200-year-old coin is inscribed with Arabic writing that speaks of the Prophet Mohammed and monotheism, according to the IAA.

The Authority’s coin expert, Dr. Robert Cole, said the coin was extremely rare, commenting, “The excitement from the find is not only with the students but also the archaeologists. It is rare to find a single gold coin in an excavation.

“It is interesting to know that such a gold coin, for a simple man, was a lot of money,” he said. “One dinar was worth more than 100 pounds of grain, and with four and a half dinars, he already could buy a house in the village,” said Cole.

Other artifacts were found in addition to the coin, said Omar Zeidan, IAA director of the excavation. “The coins were found in 7th -8th century buildings along with fragments of pottery, metal objects and animal bones,” he said. He added that the evidence signified the inhabitants lived at the time of the early Islamic period.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.
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