Seeing the Dead Sea Scrolls

By | Category: Travel destinations

Bedouin life

The finding of what we know as the Dead Sea Scrolls in the late 1940’s and early fifties was one of the most important finds of the twentieth century. The find – in caves in Jordan – adds another reason for visiting the country. Small but containing so many sights that few countries can match, Jordan is spending money on presenting its past in a new way for visitors.

Last year, in May, the Museum at the Lowest Point on Earth opened on the edge of the Dead Sea near the Byzantine monastery that commemorates Lot’s Cave. Lot and his family are said to have sought refuge from the devastation of Sodom and Gomorrah in these caves At nearly 1,330 feet below sea level it relates the past connected to this strange inland sea that straddles biblical and modern history.

Now the Jordanians have opened another museum. The Museum of Jordan is to be found in a suburb of the capital, Amman, called Ras al-‘Ayn. Here you can see the scrolls plus another 2,000 artefacts celebrating the rich past that Jordan has. As well as reminders that link you to Jordan’s past which stretches back further than the history of most nations and peoples, there are reconstructions showing how Bedouins have lived and travelled through Arab lands over the years. Visitors will be able to wear traditional Jordanian clothing and learn how to write their names in some languages. Many would naturally think Arabic to be the language but in times past other tongues were important and widely heard such as Aramaic and Nabataean so it’s not just in Arabic that you can learn to write your own name. Petra, for example, is a Nabataean city.

You need to plan your visit to this museum because it isn’t open every day. The opening hours are just from 10:00 a.m- 2:00 p.m on Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays only.

For more information about Jordan, click here.

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