The Maccabean Tombs: Minutes from the Ben Shemen Forest

The story of Chanukah comes to life in this clip from i24NEWS (3:55) which traces the story of the Maccabees through archaeology. The Maccabees lived, fought, and are thought to have been buried (though this is a subject of some controversy) on the outskirts of modern-day Modi’in, an area which includes the Modi’in and Ben Shemen Forests. The road through the forest passes a stone building where Matityahu—the father of the Maccabees—is thought to have been buried, and leads to nine tombs carve into bedrock where, according to tradition, the Maccabees themselves are buried. Access to these beautiful and meaningful sites is largely thanks to the KKL-JNF who have built the roads and maintained the Ben Shemen Forest there since it was purchased in the early 1900s.

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