Hershel Shanks

MIGHT BE A MIKVEH. Adjacent to the synagogue/spring-house, just beyond the five steps, excavators also uncovered a stepped pool fed by several channels. Archaeologists Stefano De Luca and Ehud Netzer examine the pool in the photo. Could it be a mikveh (Jewish ritual bath), which is a logical suggestion if the nearby building was in fact a synagogue? Or perhaps it was a fish pool or source for drinking water. The purpose of this pool is just one of the many riddles that the new excavations at Magdala will attempt to solve.