(RepublicanPress.org) – The noted Dutch architect and Harvard professor, Rem Koolhaas, once described toilets as the “ultimate” architectural element. As he explained, they represent the most “fundamental zone of interaction… between humans and architecture.” The first flushing toilet dates back to 1596. However, as a group of Israeli archaeologists recently discovered, earlier versions date back thousands of years.
On October 5, the Israeli Antiquities Authority announced the discovery of a 2,700-year-old toilet in an ancient Jerusalem dwelling. Workers unearthed the carved limestone finding while excavating a site for a new tourist complex.
Yes, that's a toilet, yes it's 2700 years old.
The First Temple era private toilet was recently unearthed in Jerusalem by @AntiquitiesIL archeologists.
— Israel ישראל (@Israel) October 5, 2021
The bathroom consists of a small rectangular-shaped room featuring a carved stone seat with a hole in the center. The limestone slab sat above a primitive septic tank.
Archaeologists determined the toilet dated back to the First Temple Period and believe it belonged to the wealthy owner of a royal estate. Eli Eskosido, the Antiquities Authority director, noted that although toilets are commonplace in modern homes, they were luxury items during the reign of ancient kings.
Archaeologists found several animal bones and pottery shards at the site. They also found other architectural elements like carved tiles, handrails, and a garden planted with ornamental trees and plants. Researchers hope the discoveries can shed light on the owners of the estate and what kind of life they led.
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