JERUSALEM (May. 14)
The Bible Lands Museum, designed for visitors to “walk through” 6,000 years of civilization in the Middle East, was opened to the public on Monday.
The ceremonies were attended by President Chaim Herzog of Israel and Jerusalem Mayor Teddy Kollek, who is honorary chairman of the museum board.
Located between the Knesset building and the Shrine of the Book, the museum houses one of the world’s most extensive collections of art and artifacts common to the cultures and civilizations of the ancient lands of the Bible.
They date from 6000 B.C.E to 600 C.E. and come from as far east as Afghanistan, from the western Mediterranean, the Caucasus Mountains and Nubia in Africa.
The future of the nation is rooted in its past,” Herzog told the large invited audience at the opening. “This museum is testimony to intensive life in this region, where monotheism was born and the three major religions have developed,” he said.
It “is designed for the visitor to walk through civilizations according to their historical order,” said Benjamin Abileah, the museum’s director.
The $12 million museum was endowed mainly by Dr. Eli and Batya Borowsky of Toronto, who now live in Jerusalem Borowsky, who made his fortune as an art dealer, donated the couple’s priceless collection of artifacts to the museum.