20 September 2015 - 7 Tishri 5776 - ז' תשרי ה' אלפים תשע"ו
Israel Museum displays Gabriel Revelation Stone E-mail

Considered the most important archaeological artifact to come to light in the region since the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Gabriel Revelation Stone is on public view for the first time in Israel as the centerpiece of a new focused exhibition at the Israel Museum, Jerusalem that opened in May 2013.

The inscribed first-century BCE tablet, discovered in 2007 on the eastern shore of the Dead Sea, sheds light on the spiritual life of the Second Temple Period.

The exhibition entitled: ‘I Am Gabriel’ will contextualize and further illuminate the stone’s inscriptions with a number of ancient, rare manuscripts including a fragment of the Dead Sea Scrolls and the 13thcentury Damascus Codex tracing the development of the figure of the Angel Gabriel across the early years of rabbinic Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.

On view through to February 11, 2014, ‘I Am Gabriel’ complements the ongoing large-scale exhibition Herod the Great, which explores other aspects of the period.

The Gabriel Revelation inscription reflects the messianic atmosphere, anxiety over the fate of Jerusalem, and the new role of angels as intermediaries that characterised the spiritual orientation of Jews in the Second Temple Period.

Inscribed in ink on stone, a rare find in itself, the Hebrew text is written in the first person, the narrator identifying himself as the angel Gabriel.

The inscription comprises a series of dialogues; in the main dialogue the speaker identifies himself three times in the firstperson: “I am Gabriel.” Gabriel converses with a human figure – a visionary or prophet – to whom he, Gabriel, is apparently communicating a vision.

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