I haven’t posted a Good News Friday for a couple of weeks because of Shavuot last week, so it’s time to catch up with another Good News Friday installment.
We’ll start with another astonishing Israeli invention to help the disabled (via Elder of Ziyon). You remember the ReWalk exoskeleton to enable paraplegics to walk? Well, unfortunately that device was of no use to quadriplegics. Enter the next generation, inspired by the inventor Amit Goffer who is himself a quadriplegic: The UpNRide for quadriplegics. Just watch the video:
To say kol hakavod to Amit Goffer is to understate the admiration that I have for him, both for his ingenuity and for his determination not to be beaten by his own handicap. May he go from strength, both in his career and physically.
Moving now to an entirely different theater – almost literally – Israel was the happy beneficiary of a visit and concert by the band Simply Red. Israellycool brings us the story how their lead singer Mick Hucknall went out of his way to give a kick in the teeth to BDS:
and provided some very interesting family background!:
That makes you Jewish Mick! Welcome to the Tribe! 🙂
Meanwhile the band also tweeted their joy at being in Israel:
Israellycool has several videos of the songs they performed at the concert. Go and watch and enjoy!
Kol hakavod to Mick Hucknall and Simply Red. Thank you for coming to Israel to entertain us, and for showing up the pathetic hatred of BDS. It looks like it’s going to be a great summer for Israel!
And one final item for this week from an entirely different era: a trove of Hasmonean-era (Second Temple) coins was unearthed near Modi’in:
The 16 coins from the Hasmonean period (2nd-1st century BCE) were concealed in a rock crevice up against a wall of a large agricultural estate, the Israel Antiquities Authority announced on Tuesday.
Excavation director Abraham Tendler said the shekels and half-shekels (tetradrachms and didrachms) were minted in the city of Tyre, now part of Lebanon, and bear the images of the king, Antiochus VII, and his brother Demetrius II.
The finds, discovered prior to the building of a new neighborhood in the city, will be displayed in an archaeological park in the heart of that neighborhood, the Antiquities Authority confirmed.
The discovery of the silver coins provided “compelling evidence that one of the members of the estate who had saved his income for months needed to leave the house for some unknown reason. He buried his money in the hope of coming back and collecting it, but was apparently unfortunate and never returned. It is exciting to think that the coin hoard was waiting here 2,140 years until we exposed it.”
“It seems that some thought went into collecting the coins, and it is possible that the person who buried the cache was a coin collector. He acted in just the same way as stamp and coin collectors manage collections today,” he added.
“The findings from our excavation show that a Jewish family established an agricultural estate on this hill during the Hasmonean period,” Tendler said.
The family members planted olive trees and vineyards on the neighboring hills and grew grain in the valleys. Archaeologists are currently uncovering an adjacent industrial area of olive presses and olive oil storehouses.
Numerous bronze coins minted by the Hasmonean kings were also discovered in the excavation in addition to the 16 silver ones, the authority reported.
They bear the names of kings such as Yehohanan, Judah, Jonathan or Mattathias and his title: High Priest and Head of the Council of the Jews.
The finds indicate that the estate continued to operate throughout the Early Roman period and that the Jews living there meticulously adhered to the Jewish laws of ritual purity.
Evidence discovered at the site suggests that they also took part in the first revolt against the Romans, which broke out in 66 CE. The coins found from this period are stamped with the date “Year Two” of the revolt and the slogan “Freedom of Zion.”
The estate continued to function even after the destruction of the Temple in 70 CE. “It seems that local residents did not give up hope of gaining their independence from Rome, and they were well-prepared to fight the enemy during the Bar Kochba uprising,” Tendler said, referring to the unsuccessful Jewish rebellion in 132 CE
What a fascinating discovery! It’s a like cross-section of Jewish history from the Second Temple period through to the Bar Kochba revolt. Kol hakavod to the archaeologists working on this exciting excavation. I’m looking forward to hearing about yet more exciting discoveries.
And now I return this post back to today and wish you all Shabbat Shalom!