Though separated by a thousand years, two newfound "emergency hoards" from Israel—including gold jewelry and coins—may have been hidden by ancient families fleeing unknown dangers, archaeologists say.
Revealed late last month, these 3,000-year-old rings (foreground) and earrings, from the older hoard, were found in a ceramic jug among the ruins of a house. Though unearthed in 2010, the vessel concealed its cargo until late last year, when scientists began molecular analysis of the contents.
The valuables likely belonged to wealthy Canaanites—a Semitic people who inhabited ancient Palestine and Phoenicia beginning about 5,000 years ago—according to Tel Aviv University archaeologist Israel Finkelstein, who led the excavation.
Discovered near Megiddo—the biblical site of Armageddon—the trove is, according to Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, "among the most valuable ever found from the Biblical period."
(Related pictures: Gold hoard is largest known Anglo-Saxon treasure.)