Washington: Fresh translation of character imprinted on the side of a 3,000-year-old earthenware jug, dating back to the time of King David, could sheds light on biblical history.
Experts had suspected the fragmentary inscription was written in the language of the Canaanites, a biblical people who lived in the present-day Israel.
Not so, says one expert who claims to have cracked the code: The mysterious language is actually the oldest form of written Hebrew, placing the ancient Israelites in Jerusalem earlier than previously believed.
Ancient Near Eastern history and biblical studies expert Douglas Petrovich told Fox News that Hebrew speakers were controlling Jerusalem in the 10th century, which biblical chronology points to as the time of David and Solomon.
He said that whoever they were, they were writing in Hebrew like they owned the place.
First discovered near the Temple Mount in Jerusalem last year, the 10th century B.C. fragment has been labeled the Ophel Inscription.
It likely bears the name of the jug`s owners and its contents.
If Petrovich`s analysis proves true, it would be evidence of the accuracy of Old Testament tales.
If Hebrew as a written language existed in the 10th century, as he says, the ancient Israelites were recording their history in real time as opposed to writing it down several hundred years later.
That would make the Old Testament an historical account of real-life events.