The Oldest Basket in the World

On Tuesday, March 16, 2021 archaeologists with The Israel Antiquities Authority announced that they had discovered new fragments of biblical books in a remote cave in the Judean desert.

Among other items discovered by the archaeologists was a basket which they described as being the oldest basket in the world. According to the archaeologists, the basket is more than 10,000 years old. A spokesperson for the Israel Antiquities Authority said, “As far as we know, this is the oldest basket in the world that has been found completely intact and its importance is, therefore, immense.”

The Basket at the Time of Its Discovery

The large woven basket was found with a lid and has been estimated by archaeologists to be about 10,500 years old. Thus, the baskt dates to the Pre-Pottery Neolithic period.

The Oldest Basket in the World

Naama Sukenik, the Israel Antiquities Authority’s curator of organic materials said, “We were very curious to see what was inside when we opened the lid.” When the lid of the basket was removed, archaeologists discovered that the basket was empty; it contained only some sand.

Claude Mariottini
Emeritus Professor of Old Testament
Northern Baptist Seminary

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