Recently, archaeologists found a massive complex, which has possibly served as a meeting place for a sect that worshipped the culture’s unique gods at the ancient site of Tel Burna, in Israel. This complex dates to nearly 3,000 years ago.
According to the archaeologists, the buried massive complex consists of small rooms, most centered around a large, 55-foot by 55-foot courtyard. Within the chambers, we found ceramic jars, known as ‘Pithoi’, roughly large enough to hold a human body, researchers told. The complex also includes 3 connected cups, fragments of face masks, and burnt animal bones, which seemed to be an evidence of animal sacrifice.
The researchers revealed that, the sect members, mostly could have worshipped any number of gods, though we propose Baal, the Canaanite god of thunderstorms, also known as Hadad, was most likely the patron deity. However, they can’t rule out the possibility that a female god, like Anat, an ancient war goddess was worshipped by the sect, archaeologists said.
Itzhaq Shai, a professor at Israel’s Ariel University who is leading the excavation at Tel Burna, recently told Live Science, “The letters of Ugarit, an ancient site in modern Syria proposes that the Canaanite pantheon, Baal, the Canaanite storm god, would have been the most likely candidate.”
Moreover, the archaeologists stated that, the goblets, masks and animal bones declare that the massive complex was a place for worship and celebration.
Shai said that, “With the help of these finds, we can rebuild the occurrence of feasts, indicated by several goblets and the huge amount of animal bones. Most of these bones are burnt, which is the indication the they were used in sacrificial activity.”
The researchers relayed the finding details to the attendees at this year’s European Association of Archaeologists meeting in Istanbul.