Israel Museum

Ancient TV dinner tray? Handmade stone vessels with multiple compartments have been found in Jerusalem. This example, excavated by the late Nahman Avigad in the Jewish Quarter of the city, may have been used as a serving dish for relishes or olives or as an individual dinner tray.

Avigad found stone vessels in almost every Jerusalem home that he excavated. Although scholars have long speculated that the purity laws were observed primarily by the wealthy, the discovery of stone vessels belonging to Jews of all economic levels, especially outside Jerusalem, suggests that the laws were upheld by everyone.