An ancient bronze shovel and jug tied to the religious rituals of the Second Temple were discovered in archaeological excavations at Magdala – an important Jewish town dating back to the period of Roman antiquity, the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) announced on Tuesday, April 5.

During an ongoing excavation project, a group of volunteers from Chile discovered an ornate bronze incense shovel and a matching bronze jug believed to have stored incense or coals for ritual use.

“The incense shovel that was found is one of ten others that are known in the country from the Second Temple period. From early research it is thought that the incense shovel was only used for ritual purposes, for the embers and incense that were burnt in ritual ceremonies,” Dina Avshalom-Gorni, the Chief archaeologist on behalf of the IAA, told Tazpit Press Service (TPS).

Michael Zeff/TPS