Roman-Era ‘Death Magic’ Tools Used To Communicate With The Dead Found Near Jerusalem

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Kay Smythe News and Commentary Writer
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A series of artifacts discovered in a cave near Jerusalem appears to suggest the site was used during the Roman era for locals to contact the dead, according to a study published in early July.

Human skulls, oil lamps and parts of various weapons were uncovered in the Te’omim cave close to the ancient city, leading researchers to believe the site had been used for dark rituals between the second and fourth centuries A.D., according to a study published in the Harvard Theological Review. The site is located 20 miles from Jerusalem, and it’s believed most of the Jewish residents were driven out of the region prior to whoever started the “death magic” site.

“A new pagan population arrived in what had formerly been Judea, but was now Syria Palaestina,” archaeologist and study co-author Boaz Zissu told LiveScience. “They brought with them new ideas, new customs, and apparently the idea of necromancy.” Zissu built his assumption on the ax and spear blades, 120 oil lamps and three human craniums uncovered at the site.

Researchers uncovered hoards of gold and silver coins during prior excavations of the cave, along with enough evidence to suggest the site had been in use by humans since prehistoric times. (RELATED: Bang, Shaking, A Blinding Light: New Reports Emerge From Mystery Phenomena 50 Years Ago)

The human history of the period is complex, due to ongoing agony between the Roman Empire and literally everyone they decided to invade. Between 132 and 136 A.D., the area was scarred with the remains of the Bar Kokhba revolt, when Jewish rebels rose up against the Roman invaders, according to LiveScience.

According to some historians, Romans then hijacked the history books and labelled the inhabitants of all nations they invaded as pagans and Druids, many of whom are actually believed to be intellectuals of their people, LiveScience reported in a separate article. The negative labels made it easier for the Romans to champion themselves as heroes.