Israel discovers 9,000-year-old stone mask in southern West Bank

Xinhua Published: 2018-11-29 14:18:36
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Ronit Lupu, an archeologist from the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA), holds a stone mask at the Rockefeller Museum in Jerusalem, on Nov. 28, 2018. [Photo: Xinhua]

Ronit Lupu, an archeologist from the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA), holds a stone mask at the Rockefeller Museum in Jerusalem, on Nov. 28, 2018. [Photo: Xinhua]

A rare pre-historic stone mask, dating back to the Pre-Pottery Neolithic B (PPNB) period 9,000 years ago, was discovered in the southern West Bank, the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) said Wednesday.

The mask, found in Pnei Hever region of southern Mount Hebron in Judea Area, was apparently used in the ancestor-worshipping ritual.

Israel discovers 9,000-year-old stone mask in southern West Bank. [Photo: Xinhua]

Israel discovers 9,000-year-old stone mask in southern West Bank. [Photo: Xinhua]

Made of pinkish-yellow limestone, the mask was carefully shaped into a human face, with four holes drilled along the perimeter.

"The stone was completely smoothed over and the features are perfect and symmetrical, even cheek bones. It has an impressive nose and a mouth with distinct teeth," said Ronit Lupu from the Theft Prevention Unit of the IAA.

Made of pinkish-yellow limestone, the mask was carefully shaped into a human face, with four holes drilled along the perimeter. [Photo: Xinhua]

Made of pinkish-yellow limestone, the mask was carefully shaped into a human face, with four holes drilled along the perimeter. [Photo: Xinhua]

There are currently 15 known masks dating from the PPNB period.

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