© The Israel Museum, Jerusalem/Collection of the Israel Antiquities Authority/The Bridgeman Art Library

TREASURE TROVE. A hoard of 442 mainly-copper cultic artifacts was discovered in a cave, now known as the Cave of the Treasure, in a wadi 7 miles south of the Ein Gedi temple. These objects, discovered in Nahal Mishmar by archaeologist Pesah Bar-Adon, are from the Chalcolithic period, contemporaneous with the temple at Ein Gedi. The hoard included 240 maceheads, about 100 scepters and 10 strange crown-like pieces too small for a human head. The objects display an extraordinary level of metallic workmanship and artistic skill. Archaeologist David Ussishkin posits that these objects were deposited here when the temple at Ein Gedi was abandoned. No doubt whoever left them in the cave intended to return—but that never happened.