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2000 years ago you would have given a half-shekel coin as tribute to the Temple.

You could only give HALF of what was needed and your neighbor's contribution would COMPLETE the donation.

Now, due to a generous pledge, every donation made will be "Completed" and matched until we raise $20,000.

$772 USD
out of $20,000 USD

4% 달성

This Website |
This Video |

*This text hasn’t yet been fully translated to Korean. If you wish to help translate it please mention this in the comments of the donation form*

This website is about a story that is relevant to each one of you. It is a story of universal significance. It is the story of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, of antiquities buried in soil, and the unique archaeological project for sifting this soil, once dumped so unceremoniously outside its gated walls.

It is a simple and fundamental thing about our ability to understand our past and the history of one of the most important sites in the western world. Here, fateful and magnificent events took place having impact on the very formation of western civilization. Indeed, what happened here can be said to have affected the whole of human history.

The Temple Mount Sifting Project is as close as anyone can get today to excavate the Temple Mount itself. The finds discovered over the past ten years represent the first ever archaeological data originating from within the Temple Mount soil. Publishing these artifacts will shed more light on the long history of this sacred site, and hopefully contribute to the resolution of many debates related to this site.

The Temple Mount Sifting Project is now turning to the general public all over the world to help fund this important work by contributing a symbolic “Half Shekel”. Here is your chance to take part in revealing Jerusalem’s ancient past.

PLEASE DONATE TODAY 

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The Temple Mount Sifting Project in a nutshell

For thousands of years the Temple Mount has been a sacred site for three of the world’s monotheistic faiths. For the last 828 years, the site has been under Muslim control; and due to political sensibilities, no systematic archaeological excavation has ever been allowed at the site. In 1967, after the Six-Day war, Israel permitted the Awaqf (the Muslim trust that manages the site) to retain its control over the mount.

Israeli antiquities law requires a salvage excavation before construction at archaeological sites. The Awaqf chose to ignore this law when, in 1999, they illicitly bulldozed a huge pit on the Temple Mount for the construction of an entrance to a mosque, and dumped approximately 400 truckloads – 9,000 tons – of soil saturated with archaeological artifacts from all of Temple Mount’s historical periods into the nearby Kidron Valley.

Heavy machinery used for digging a new entrance to “Solomon’s Stables” (November 1999). This work was done without archaeological supervision, removing 9000 tons of earth, rich with ancient artifacts.

Archaeologists Dr. Gabriel Barkay and Zachi Dvira understood that this discarded earth represented a treasure trove of information, despite the fact that it had been so brutally wrenched from its archaeological context.

In 2004 they seized this unique opportunity and established the Temple Mount Sifting Project, with the goal of rescuing the ancient artifacts and conducting research that would enhance our understanding of the archeology and history of the Temple Mount.

Over the years the project has become a global educational endeavor. Attracting over 150,000 volunteers that have participated in the Sifting. An unprecedented number exceeding any archaeological project anywhere in the world. Such enthusiastic interest attests to the significance of the Temple Mount and the antiquities being uncovered. In addition, the public has assisted us in our efforts to understand some of the finds which were difficult to identify, via a unique website where images of these finds are displayed, and the public is invited to help us identify and determine the nature and date of these unique items. This involvement of a global public of interested participants, is unique in the history of archeological research, and has proven critical for the operation and advancement of the project.

This idea is vividly expressed in the Book of Psalms:

“For your servants have cherished her stones, and have redeemed her dust” (Psalms 102:14-15)

Now we are inviting you to be part of the next phase of this enterprise, by funding the analysis and publication of the project’s finds.

Since the Temple Mount has never been excavated, the ancient artifacts retrieved in the Sifting Project provide valuable and previously inaccessible information. Even though they have been extracted from their archaeological context, most of these artifacts can be identified and dated by comparing them with those found in other sites. We have developed new methodologies and technologies for studying the finds from the Temple Mount, and have implemented advanced quantitative and analytical methods for understanding the significance of the distribution of the finds throughout the debris.

What have we found so far?

Every bucket of earth we sift contains ancient artifacts representing 3000 years of the Temple Mount’s history. The most common categories are pottery fragments, glass vessel pieces, metal objects, animal bones, worked stones and mosaic tesserae.

In addition to these general categories, there are many fascinating finds, such as fragments of stone vessels, jewelry, beads, terracotta figurines, arrowheads and other weaponry, weights, clothing accessories, gaming pieces and dice, bone and shell inlays, furniture decorations, ornaments, bone and ivory objects, and fragments of inscriptions on stone and pottery.

Various pieces of jewelry from different periods. Materials include semi-precious stones, glass, bronze, silver and gold.

Various pieces of jewelry from different periods. Materials include semi-precious stones, glass, bronze, silver and gold.

There are also elaborate architectural remains, including fragments of columns and their capitals, fragments of mosaic floors, opus Sectile floor tiles, frescos (colored wall plaster pieces) and glazed wall tiles.

To date, the Sifting Project has uncovered more than 5,000 coins, ranging from tiny silver coins from the 4th century BCE to coins minted in modern times. Among them are very rare and exciting coins such as the silver half-shekel discussed in greater detail below.

Selected coins from the Second Temple Period

Selected coins from the Second Temple period

Bronze arrowhead dated to the 10th century BCE, the time of King Solomon. Arrowheads from this period are rarely found in Israel.

From the First Temple period (1000 to 586 BCE, from king David to the destruction of the First Temple) there is an abundance of pottery fragments originating from bowls, pots jars and jugs, as well as chalices, stands, rattles, and terracotta figurines (mostly four-legged animals, but also human female shaped fertility figurines).Other finds from this period include sling stones, stone weights, a bronze arrowhead from the time of King Solomon, and another rare bronze arrowhead used by the Babylonian army that destroyed the First Temple.

Inscribed artifacts include ostraca (inscribed pottery fragments) and clay seal impressions (bullae). One seal impression bears the Hebrew names ליהו… and אִמֶר, meaning “(Belonging to) […]lyahu (son of) Immer”. Immer was the name of a priestly family mentioned in the books of Jeremiah and Chronicles.

A 7th century BCE seal impression with ancient Hebrew writing, This seal impression is the first ancient Hebrew inscription ever found on the Temple Mount and is evidence of the administrative activity in the First Temple.

This seal impression is the first ancient Hebrew inscription ever found from the Temple Mount, and directly attests to the administrative activities in the First Temple.Other finds include a cone-shaped seal from the time of King Solomon depicting two animals, a black stone seal depicting a gazelle, and a seal made of lapis lazuli, a semi-precious gem stone.

During the Second Temple period (515 BCE to 70 CE) the Temple and its esplanade underwent several construction projects, primarily during the reign of King Herod and his descendants. The finds from this period include numerous pottery shards, especially from cooking pots, and many burnt livestock bones. These finds may be linked to the massive pilgrimages to the Temple described in written sources. The sifting also yielded fragments of architectural members that may be the remains of magnificent porticos that encircled the Temple Mount, or perhaps even remains of the Temple itself!

A very illuminating find is the collection of more than one thousand fragments of floor tiles in a variety of shapes, sizes and colors.

A fragment of an elaborately decorated frieze. The design is of an acanthus leaf typical of Herodian architecture. The stone has burn marks and may have originated in the Temple itself!

A fragment of an elaborately decorated frieze. The design is of an acanthus leaf typical of Herodian architecture. The stone has burn marks and may have originated in the Temple itself!.

These are identified as floor tiles used in a paving technique known in the Roman world as opus sectile, in which the tiles were assembled in various ways to form rich geometric patterns. The writings of Flavius Josephus testify that this technique was used as ornamentation for the open courts that surrounded the Temple:

Those entire courts that were exposed to the sky were laid with stones of all sorts (War. 5 5:2)

Josephus’ description is completely consistent with our finds and allows us to suggest a comprehensive reconstruction of the patterns of the Temple Mount floors.

We recovered Roman period arrowheads that may originate from the Roman siege before the destruction of the Temple. The sifted earth contains large amounts of ash from repeated conflagrations. This, too, may attest to the Roman destruction.

Floor tiles of various shapes, colors and sizes that were used in the opus Sectile Roman Paving technique in royal structures. This type of floor is mentioned in the writings of Flavius Josephus regarding the floor of the open courts that surrounded the Temple.

Floor tiles of various shapes, colors and sizes which were used in the opus sectile Roman Paving technique in royal structures. This type of floor is mentioned in the writings of Flavius Josephus regarding the floor of the open courts that surrounded the Temple.

A suggested reconstruction of the Temple courts according to Flavius Josephus’ writings and the floor tiles found at the Sifting Project.

A suggested reconstruction of the Temple courts according to Flavius Josephus’ writings and the floor tiles found at the Sifting Project.

Arrowheads from the Second Temple period.

Arrowheads from the Second Temple period.

The finds from the Late Roman period (70 to 324 CE) are not as numerous as in other periods, but do reflect the pagan nature of the site under Roman control. These finds include coins, pottery, gaming pieces, and evidence for a bone tools workshop at the site.

Bone and ivory dice common to the Roman period. Jewish law from that exact time, per the Mishnah, disqualifies as a legal witness any person who plays with dice (Sanhedrim 24b).

The Byzantine period (324 to 638 CE), too, is rich in archaeological remains, including mosaic tesserae, roof tiles, fragments of Corinthian pillar capitals, church chancel screens and numerous coins. The pottery includes many oil lamps, some bearing misspelled Greek inscriptions, and others emblazoned with a cross or stylized cruciform lamp handles. An important group of crucifixes and cross-shaped pendants of various styles and materials was also found. On some of them the image of Jesus appears in relief or incised.

The abundance of finds from this period challenges the standard assumption that the Temple Mount was deserted and devoid of structures during this period.

Byzantine period marble and limestone architectural fragments.

Byzantine period marble and limestone architectural fragments.

A very large percentage of the finds come from the Early Islamic period (638 to 1099 CE). In this period the name of the site was changed to Haram al-Sharif (the noble sanctuary). The Dome of the Rock was built by the Umayyad Khalif Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan in 691 CE as a shrine to commemorate the spot where Solomon’s Temple once stood. Later on, in 705-714 CE, his son al-Walid ibn Abd al-Malik built the Al-Aqsa mosque at the southern edge of the Haram al-Sharif above the ruins of a Byzantine structure.

Gilded glass mosaic tesserae from the Early Islamic period removed from the Dome of the Rock exterior walls during later renovations.

Gilded glass mosaic tesserae from the Early Islamic period which were removed from the Dome of the Rock exterior walls during later renovations.

These edifices were renovated in later periods. These renovations included the removal of earlier architectural elements; the construction debris was dumped in the eastern side of the Temple Mount. Such renovations took place when the magnificent exterior gilded mosaics of the Dome of the Rock were replaced with decorated glazed wall tiles during the 16th century CE, as well as when the floor tiles of the Dome of the Rock and the Dome of the Chain were replaced in modern times. The Sifting Project has indeed recovered tens of thousands of gilded glass tesserae cubes originating from the mosaics on the exterior walls of the Dome of the Rock, as well as many engraved marble architectural elements from various structures. Some of these architectural fragments were used within Umayyad structures, though they actually originated from the Byzantine or even Second Temple periods.

In addition, inscribed pottery, mother-of-pearl inlays, jewelry, gaming pieces, glass and metal weights with inscriptions, and many coins (including gold ones) and inscribed stones were recovered.

The finds from the Sifting Project greatly contribute to the archaeological and historical research of the Temple Mount during the Crusader period (1099 to 1187 CE). The Temple Mount was commonly associated with the Knights Templar in this period. The Knights used the Al-Aqsa Mosque as their headquarters and turned the large southeastern substructure into stables for their horses, calling it “Solomon’s Stables”. The earth we are sifting originated in the area of Solomon’s Stables and has yielded many remnants of Crusader activity, including arrowheads, horseshoe nails of typical European medieval cavalry and armor scales. These finds are the first archaeological evidence for the Knights Templar’s utilization of Solomon’s Stables. In addition, the biggest and most varied collection of silver coins of this period ever found in Jerusalem was discovered in the Sifting Project; among them are extremely rare coins and a one-of-a-kind Knights Templar medallion. The Crusader finds include many cruciform pendants, pottery and architectural remains. Many opus sectile floor tiles -that were installed in the Dome of the Rock and dismantled in later periods – were recovered in the sifting, enabling us to reconstruct the elaborate floor of the Dome of the Rock during the Crusaders’ times.

Crusader era iron horseshoe nails that attest to horses of the knights Templar in Solomon’s Stables.

Crusader era iron horseshoe nails which belonged to the horses of the knights Templar that resided in Solomon’s Stables.

We have recovered numerous architectural elements from the Later Islamic periods (1187 to 1917 CE); most notable are the glazed tiles used by Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent to replace the original glass mosaics which ornamented the exterior walls of the Dome of the Rock. Moreover, thousands of coins from the Mameluke and Ottoman periods contribute significantly to the numismatic research of this period. This is also true regarding the abundant pottery from this period, which we plan to publish in great detail. Other finds from these periods include many jewelry pieces, clothing articles, military badges and insignia, old musket rounds and flint lock stones, an enormous number of Ottoman tobacco pipes, and much more.

Ottoman personal bronze seals. Among them is the seal of Abd al-Fattah al-Tamimi, who served as the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem in the early 18th century.

Ottoman personal bronze seals. Among them is the seal of Abd al-Fattah al-Tamimi, who served as the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem in the early 18th century.

The Sifting Project has proven to be an unprecedented and inexhaustible source of knowledge about the Temple Mount. Archaeological finds that lay hidden within its soil for thousands of years can now be scientifically analyzed and published for the first time. The results of this endeavor will shed much light on the Temple Mount’s past, its builders and rebuilders, its religious and social significance, its defenders and its conquerors. Today, ten years into this project, about half of the debris removed from the Temple Mount has been sifted. The project is continuing full steam ahead and many more items await discovery.

What is the importance of this research?

for My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations (Isaiah 56: 7)

The Temple Mount is sacred to more than half of the world’s population. According to the Bible, it is a place where heaven and earth meet, which was designated to be an epicenter for all facets the religious and national life,  and an anchor point from which the word of God is spread out to the world. Today it is Judaism’s holiest site, where the First and Second Temples once stood, and remains the focal point of Jewish longing prayers. For Christians, it is home to the Temple that Jesus knew.   It is the third holiest site in Islam, the location of the Dome of the Rock and Al-Aqsa Mosque. Anything that happens on the Temple Mount resonates throughout the entire world.

Despite the fact that the Temple Mount is mentioned numerous times in the Bible and in other important ancient historical sources, much of its past remains a mystery. No archaeological excavation has ever taken place on the site because of its political sensitivity. The absence of archaeological data has resulted in many unresolved historical questions that are the subject of much scholarly debate.

Map of the Old City of Jerusalem with the major excavated areas in the last 150 years. Note the large blank rectangle of the Temple Mount where no systematic excavation has ever taken place.

Map of the Old City of Jerusalem with the major excavated areas in the last 150 years. Note the large blank rectangle of the Temple Mount where no systematic excavation has ever taken place.

The Temple Mount Sifting Project is as close as anyone has ever come to excavating the Temple Mount itself. The finds discovered over the past ten years represent the first ever archaeological data originating from within the Temple Mount soil. Publishing the results of our work will shed more light on the long history of this sacred site, and hopefully contribute to the resolution of many debates related to this site.

For example, some scholars doubt that the Temple Mount was part of the city during the 10th century BCE, and suggest that Jerusalem was not a capital city but rather merely a small village. Our finds contradict this minimalist assertion and confirm the biblical account.

Unfortunately, many excavations fail to produce a scientific publication of their finds. Unpublished finds have little value for archaeological research. It is as though they had never been found. We cannot allow this to be the fate of the finds from such an important site as the Temple Mount.

In addition, today, the Temple Mount is the site of conflicts and disputes arising mainly from ignorance and disinformation. It is the most contested piece of land on our planet. Although among scholars (including Muslim scholars) the existence of the Jewish Temples at the site is beyond any doubt, in recent decades Palestinian Muslim political leaders have advanced new claims completely denying the existence of the First and Second Temples at the site. The publication of the Temple Mount Sifting Project finds will create an opportunity for educated dialogue and hopefully help reduce political conflicts. Ignorance feeds more conflicts and disputes while knowledge helps us better understand each other.

That is why we ask you to support our efforts to bring to light the history of the Temple Mount, a place of significance to billions of people throughout the world, and to prevent these antiquities and their history from being lost to barbaric illegal construction.

What are our budgetary requirements?

More than half a million finds await processing and analysis in our laboratory. The study and publication of these finds are enormous tasks that require diligence and the expertise of many scholars. The operation of the sifting site is currently funded by the Ir-David Foundation, but we lack funds for the research and publication of the finds.

The funding will be utilized for the following:

  • Numerous researchers are already on board and others will soon be hired to study our artifacts: pottery vessels, architectural elements, coins, arrowheads, jewelry, floor tiles, figurines, etc.  Each artifact category requires multiple experts, each of whom specializes in a particular period of Jerusalem’s history.
  • The most expensive segment of our work is the scientific analysis. Evaluation by Carbon-14 dating, mineralogical analysis, artifacts preservation, computerized statistical analysis and comparative typological data mining all require sophisticated expertise and highly specialized laboratory equipment.
  • High resolution studio photography, 3-D laser scanning, scientific drawing, sorting, classifying, compiling, editing, and printing the final reports will help bring our new knowledge to the public.
  • The operation and upkeep of our laboratory provides a center for our research.

25

What’s the story with the half-shekel?

The Temple Mount Sifting Project is all about the spirit of volunteering and taking responsibility in public matters. During the Second Temple period, each person expressed his commitment to the Temple by contributing half-shekel of silver annually in order to fund it operation. This tax was inspired by the Biblical obligation in the book of Exodus:

Each one who is numbered in the census shall give this: half a shekel according to the holy shekel; half a shekel as an offering to the Lord. (Exodus 30: 13)

At the end of the Second Temple period this Temple Tax was paid using special silver half-shekel coins probably minted on the Temple Mount. We are fortunate to have recovered one such coin minted during the first year of the Great Jewish Revolt against Rome (66/67 CE)! This rare find — our own silver half shekel — has inspired us to launch our Half Shekel Crowd Funding website through which we can all share in the work of bringing to light the unknown story of the Temple Mount.

A rare silver half-shekel coin found in the sifting. Obverse: A chalice from the Temple topped by the letter aleph, meaning “Year One”. Around it are the words “half a shekel”. Reverse: A branch with three pomegranates surrounded by the words “Holy Jerusalem”. These coins were used for paying the annual Temple tax according to the Biblical commandment in Exodus 30:13-15.

A rare silver half-shekel coin found in the sifting. Obverse: A chalice from the Temple topped by the letter aleph, meaning “Year One”. Around are the words “half a shekel”. Reverse: A branch with three pomegranates surrounded by the words “Holy Jerusalem”. These coins were used for paying the annual Temple tax according to the Biblical commandment in Exodus 30:13-15.

Some of you are probably asking what is the current value of the Half Shekel? Well, the current value of a shekel can be calculated by examining its purchasing power in ancient times. The biblical shekel that was used in the tabernacle was equal to 20 gera. The gera was the daily wage of a laborer. So half-shekel represented ten days’ wages for a blue-collar worker!

A four gera weight that was found in the sifting (First Temple period)

A four gera weight that was found in the sifting (First Temple period)

We do not expect to receive such sums from everyone; but we hope that you are inspired by the idea that everyone can contribute something to this cause. People who share our concern for the Temple Mount can assist in bringing to light its buried treasures with their own personal half-shekel contribution.

In what other ways can I support the project?

Even without a half-shekel donation, you can help by sharing this website and video via social media – on Facebook and Twitter. Raising awareness about the Temple Mount Sifting Project in your community, and even around your own dinner table, will help us give voice to the muted history of one of the world’s most sacred sites.

We encourage you, if you haven’t already and even if you did, to visit the Sifting site at Emek Zurim National Park in Jerusalem, and bring your friends.   Join us in experiencing the excitement of recovering the ancient remains of the Temple Mount. Click here for information about how to participate.

The Sifting Project in the media

Below are links to a sample of the many reports about the Sifting Project that have appeared in past years in the media and are accessible online.

Smithsonian Magazine

National Geographic Magazine

Jerusalem Post

Haaretz

Israel Hayom

AP

NY Daily News

YOUR half shekel contribution will help reveal the story of the Temple Mount. Your assistance is of vital importance. DONATE TODAY.logos small and spaced out

 

We are interested in hearing your thoughts about this website and the goal we are trying to achieve. You are welcome to send your feedback and comments to siftingtm@gmail.com.

January 11th 2016

The Half-Shekel Campaign – Summary and Conclusions

First and foremost, we would like to express our deep gratitude to all those who answered our call and donated to the project and helped disseminate the Campaign. YOUR SUPPORT IS TRULY APPRECIATED. Thank you letters and gifts will be mailed shortly.

Our” Half-Shekel” campaign was launched on September 1st 2015 and lasted for four months. The Temple Mount Sifting Project is all about involving the community, and this campaign was the first time we invited the public to partake in helping fund the project. We chose the crowd funding approach, even though we didn’t know what to expect. This kind of platform, when used by non-profit organizations, is often used to help fund and promote social, medical or political causes, and usually not used for scientific research, let alone for archaeological research although many people find interest and value in it, they still prefer to donate to other causes.

We produced a video with an attempt to tell the story of the sifting project in an interesting and touching way for those who are less-acquainted with the story of the Temple Mount, its history and archaeology, as well as for those who are well acquainted and even for trained archaeologists. We knew that a short video would be essential for it to   become viral, but we weren’t successful   in finding  a way to  consolidate  the story of the project  in addition to explaining our financial needs to the non-aquatint in less than 7 minutes although we managed to have the Hebrew version shorter (5 min).

Eventually the Hebrew video became viral to some extend on Facebook and managed to reach 20 thousand people quite quickly with almost no paid promotion (a total of 27 thousand on both Facebook and YouTube). The English version, which was also available with translation subtitles in many languages, was less successful and eventually reached 50 thousand people (16 thousand people have visited the Half-Shekel Campaign website and more than 270 of them have donated. During the time of this campaign, we eventually managed to raise $35,440.  The donations came mainly from English speaking countries and from Israel, but also from distant parts of the world such as Brazil, Chile, Singapore and other places.

A short while after the inception of the campaign, the political conflict concerning the Temple Mount became a hot topic in the media, and we weren’t sure if it detracted or motivated support of the campaign. We prefer avoiding politics   as much as possible, especially since we are dealing with the most politically sensitive site in Israel, although certain aspects of our research may unavoidably have some political implications. The website has also been translated into Arabic, and attracted a relatively large percentage of visits from Arabic speaking countries, surprisingly, we received only few malicious comments, while hundreds of visitors shared the website and clicked like. Perhaps the scientifically oriented nature of the text helped to some extend to reduce the conflict fed by decisive and ignorant historical claims.

We are still far from reaching the project’s needs, and our funding efforts will proceed. This website will be maintained as a permanent funding website, and we will continue promoting it in various other ways.

You are all invited to continue supporting the project by sending a recurring donation and by sharing the websites of the Temple Mount Sifting Project.

With much gratitude,

Gabriel Barkay and Zachi Dvira

 

January 1st, 2016

The campaign is over. Thank you all for your donations and for distributing this website. We will publish a campaign summary in the coming days.

We will send out the all gifts within the coming month.

Donations could still be done on this website (with gifts) or through our weblogs. This website will be redesigned to a permanent fund raising website.

For further updates about the project please visit our weblogs.

 

Happy New Year

The Temple Mount Sifting Project

 

December 27, 201

In three days we’re about to end our current phase of our crowd funding campaign. After that this website will be converted to a permanent website for donations to the Sifting Project. This campaign has been running for the last four months and has managed to reach 75 thousand people who have watched the campaign video (English 47,914; Hebrew: 27,452). The campaign brought about 16,500 visitors (unique visits) to this website. Since our last update we have doubled the Facebook shares, especially in Arabic and Portuguese (see table below), and currently more 3400 people have shared this website! Thank you all!

Up to this point we managed to raise in this campaign $20,676 by 257 donors (the total sum on the website includes also direct donations that were received recently and were not achieved via this campaign). We are pleased to see that we managed to receive support from all corners of the world.

In our next update we will provide a summary to this campaign and details about the phase.

See below the statistics for more detailed and interesting results:

 

Top Website Visitors by Country

——————————————– 

Country Website Visitors Frequency (1 per x Internet Users)
Israel 4,962 1,195
Jordan 526 6,417
Pal. Authority 133 9,774
Iraq 143 18,937
Venezuela 594 24,492
El Salvador 51 34,173
Norway 124 39,483
Honduras 31 51,695
Ukraine 292 57,702
Canada 521 63,340
United States 4,446 68,203
Bolivia 52 76,357
Portugal 86 81,576
Netherlands 177 91,208
Hong Kong 63 91,291
Brazil 1,045 103,180
Australia 204 103,807
Turkey 285 124,066
Belarus 34 142,852
Austria 44 162,163

 

Top Donors by Country

——————————–

Country Donors Donors Percentage of Website Visitors
United States 116 2.6%
Israel 90 1.8%
Canada 11 2.1%
United Kingdom 8 2.4%
Australia 7 3.4%
Brazil 3 N/A
Italy 3 N/A
Norway 2 N/A
Austria 2 N/A
Belgium 2 N/A
Netherlands 1 N/A
Turkey 1 N/A
New Zealand 1 N/A
Singapore 1 N/A
Finland 1 N/A
Sweden 1 N/A
Germany 1 N/A
Mexico 1 N/A
Chile 1 N/A

 

Website Visitors by Language

—————————————–

Language Visitors
English 7,291
Hebrew 3,382
Spanish 1,286
Arabic 1,224
Russian 708
French 514
Turkish 338
Korean 274
Chinese-Traditional 153
Chinese -Simplified 126
Norwegian 182
Italian 207
Portuguese 454
German 127
Dutch The Netherlands 141
Farsi Iran 40
Hungarian 53

 

Facebook Shares by Language

—————————————–

Language FB Shares
English 2100
Arabic 353
Spanish 312
Portuguese 200
Hebrew 111
Russian 89
French 63
Turkish 36
Persian 32
Norwegian 19
Chinese (simplified) 19
Korean 16
Italian 16
Chinese (traditional) 12
Deutsch 11
Nederland 10
Hungarian (Magyar) 0
Total 3399

 

December 15, 2015: We are now capable of providing Tax-Deducible receipts from the U.K. as well.

December 12, 2015: See Report in Jerusalem Post: Byzantine-era potsherd from Temple Mount may contain engraving of holy site’s menorah

December 8, 2015:

Three months have passed since we launched the crowdfunding campaign; the current campaign is scheduled to end on Dec 31, 2015. Since we are still far from reaching our final goal, we will probably continue fundraising with this website, but change the format so it will suit an ongoing fundraising campaign and not one that is limited by time.

We would like to update you about several things that we’ve been working on. Many of you have probably already seen the news reports about the “Hezekiah seal” found in the Ophel excavations south of the Temple Mount, which were directed by Dr. Eilat Mazar. This seal impression was found in 2010 at our sifting facility in Tzurim Valley, when we assisted with wet-sifting earth from this excavation. Until recently, the reading of this bulla was ‘לחזקיהו … מלכיהו  (Hezekiyahu ?? Malkiyahu), but when Reut ben-Ariyeh, who studied the seal impressions from the Ophel excavation, noticed a dot between מלכ andיהו , and the unclear letter of the second name, the reading became clear: “Hezekiyah (son of) Ahaz King of Judah”. This is the first time that a Judean king seal or seal impression is found by a controlled archaeological excavation!  We are proud that the Temple Mount Sifting Project took part of this great discovery. Click here to read the press release.

We are about to publish a new article, based on finds from the sifting project, about reconstructing Crusader floors which were situated in the Dome of the Rock. This will be published on Dec 20th in an international conference at Haifa University marking 150 years of the PEF (Palestine Exploration Fund). (Click here to see the full program).

And one last thing for Chanukah – two days ago we published an image of a potsherd with an incised design of what appears to be the Temple Menorah; the potsherd is probably from the Byzantine period. What was the purpose of this drawing? What can we learn from it about the rabbinic medieval interpretation of the Menorah shape? These questions were sent out to our community of followers and supporters whose opinion we cherish. . You are welcome to add your suggestion or comment in our Facebook page or blog.

Happy Chanukah,

The Temple Mount Sifting Project

 

October 26, 2015:

When we launched the campaign 50 days ago, the Hebrew video immediately went viral and reached 10,000 people within three days, while the English video was less successful and reached 3,500 people. Up to date the videos were watched (30 sec views and more) on Facebook and YouTube by 43,797 people.  12,050 people have visited the website and 199 people have donated a total sum of $21,940. We intend to continue the campaign until the end of 2015.

The video has the potential to reach a very wide audience, especially these days when the Temple Mount is in the focus of the news. Since many ignorant comments are being heard in the media and distorted articles are published in major newspapers, this story and archaeological information is essential for establishing an educated debate.

The Temple Mount Sifting Project does not have a political agenda, and as open minded academic researchers we are open minded for any conclusion that can be deducted from the finds. We oppose ignorance. All scientific or academic research eventually serves humanity by helping us make better decisions. If the sifting project finds could help reduce tensions that are rooted by ignorance – we would be happy to serve this goal as well.

It is worthwhile to mention that about 15% of the website visitors are Arab speakers, and there are about 353 shares and hundreds of likes to the Arabic version of the website. It seems like the Arab world is very interested in this story.

 

October 25, 2015

When we launched the campaign 50 days ago, the Hebrew video immediately went viral and reached 10,000 people within three days, while the English video was less successful and reached 3,500 people. Up to date the videos were watched (30 sec views and more) on Facebook and YouTube by 43,797 people.  12,050 people have visited the website and 199 people have donated a total sum of $21,940. We intend to continue the campaign until the end of 2015.

The video has the potential to reach a very wide audience, especially these days when the Temple Mount is in the focus of the news. Since many ignorant comments are being heard in the media and distorted articles are published in major newspapers, this story and archaeological information is essential for establishing an educated debate.

The Temple Mount Sifting Project does not have a political agenda, and as open minded academic researchers we are open minded for any conclusion that can be deducted from the finds. We oppose ignorance. All scientific or academic research eventually serves humanity by helping us make better decisions. If the sifting project finds could help reduce tensions that are rooted by ignorance – we would be happy to serve this goal as well.

It is worthwhile to mention that about 15% of the website visitors are Arab speakers, and there are about 353 shares and hundreds of likes to the Arabic version of the website. It seems like the Arab world is very interested in this story.

 

October 12, 2015

Since our last update – with the organic exposure of the website and some paid ads – we tripled the number of visitors to the website. Up to this point we managed to raise $19,607 by 171 donors. The number of people who viewed the YouTube video (26,759 views) and those who visited the website (10,432 unique visitors) also increased.

There is great interest among Middle Eastern Arabs, leading to more than 300 shares and 500 likes of the Arab version of the website. We are still waiting to see who will be the first one among the Arab supporters to be courageous enough to make a donation.

In our last report Canada was first place but it has now been replaced by the United Kingdom with the highest percent of donors relative to website visitors, followed by Australia.

See below for more interesting results:

 

Top Video Views Frequency by Country*

Country Internet Users YouTube Video Views Frequency (1 per x Internet Users)
Israel 5928772 2630 2254
Palestine Authority 1300000 78 16667
El Salvador 1742832 77 22634
Canada 33000381 1450 22759
Jordan 3375307 146 23119
New Zealand 4162209 167 24923
Costa Rica 2511139 100 25111
Norway 4895885 182 26900
United States 303229759 11223 27019
Australia 21176595 684 30960
Puerto Rico 2027549 64 31680
Singapore 4453859 136 32749
Venezuela 14548421 430 33834
South Africa 24909854 666 37402
Paraguay 2005278 51 39319
Panama 1899892 43 44184
Guatemala 2716781 61 44537
Honduras 1602558 33 48562
Netherlands 16143879 317 50927
Finland 5117660 98 52221
Uruguay 2017280 37 54521
Iraq 2707928 49 55264
Philippines 39470845 624 63255
Ecuador 6012003 90 66800
United Kingdom 57075826 809 70551
Hungary 7388776 101 73156
Malaysia 12150362 164 74088
Bolivia 3970587 51 77855
Chile 11686746 135 86568
Hong Kong 5751357 64 89865
Poland 25666238 278 92325
Sweden 8581261 91 94300
Switzerland 7180749 72 99733
Denmark 5419113 53 102247
Belgium 9441116 91 103749
Colombia 25660725 223 115071
Argentina 24973660 217 115086
Ireland 3817491 33 115682
Dominican Republic 5072674 39 130069
Ukraine 16849008 125 134792

* Not including over 23,000 Facebook views. At this point we cannot access this data categorized per country from Facebook.

                                                     

Top Website Visitors by Country

Country Website Visitors Frequency (1 per x Internet Users)
Israel 2771 2140
Jordan 518 6516
Palestinian Authority 123 10569
Iraq 142 19070
Venezuela 590 24658
El Salvador 49 35568
Norway 83 58987
Ukraine 277 60827
Bolivia 52 76357
Portugal 77 91111
Canada 305 108198
United States 2,413 125665
Hong Kong 44 130713
Turkey 252 140313
Brazil 735 146698
Netherlands 104 155230
Australia 120 176472
South Korea 216 209788
Spain 163 214787
Austria 32 222974
Belgium 39 242080
Taiwan 64 291246
Italy 115 318208
France 131 423125
United Kingdom 126 452983
Egypt 74 544751
Mexico 61 834804
Germany 53 1353350
Russia 50 1688756
India 51 4768606

 

Top Donors by Country

Country Donors per Visitors Rate Donors
United States 3.4% 83
Israel 1.9% 53
Canada 3.0% 9
United Kingdom 4.8% 6
Australia 4.2% 5
Norway N/A 2
Italy N/A 2
New Zealand N/A 1
Netherlands N/A 1
Finland N/A 1
Chile N/A 1
Sweden N/A 1
Brazil N/A 1

 

Website Visitors by Language

Language Visitors
English 4,051
Hebrew 1,728
Spanish 1,231
Arabic 1,117
Russian 495
French 438
Turkish 299
Korean 299
Chinese-Traditional 123
Chinese -Simplified 123
Norwegian 118
Italian 108
Portuguese 106
German 79
Dutch The Netherlands 72
Persian 21
Hungarian 21

 

 Facebook Shares by Language

Language FB Shares
English 1500
Arabic 352
Spanish 152
Hebrew 111
Turkish 35
Persian 32
Russian 27
Norwegian (Norsk Bokmal) 19
Chinese (simplified) 19
Thai 16
Chinese (traditional) 12
French 9
Italian 6
Netherlands 3
German 2
Hungarian (Magyar) 0
Portugese 0

October 5, 2015

We realized that promoting this website will take longer than we expected, so we decided to extend the campaign until December 31st.

September 27, 2015

Jerusalem Post: Jewish history’s greatest archaeological crime

 

September 24, 2015

Rare 3,000-year-old King David era seal discovered by Temple Mount Sifting Project

See full report at our weblog: templemount.wordpress.com

See Media Reports at:

Jerusalem Post

Times of Israel

 

September 22, 2015 – Second Update

Until now the campaign has been going on with organic promotion, and soon we are going to promote the video and the website with paid ads and media news. Now is a good time to see how well we are doing.

Up to this point we managed to raise $17,085 by 116 donors. That’s not much when taking into account the number of people that viewed the video (15562 views) and those that visited the website (3440 unique visitors). It seems like people are really interested in this story, but only a small percentage choose to donate. Our goal is to reach 1 million video views which mean that in order to reach our goal we need to dramatically increase the exposure of the video and the website. We will continue to fundraise through philanthropic foundations and these donations will be marked as “direct” on the funders list.

Following are statistical tables that demonstrate how well the video and the website were received in various countries. We calculated frequencies in relation to each country’s population of internet users. This will allow us to compare our support among various countries.

As you can see below, after Israel, the Canadians have the best score – 1 per 37,931Canadians has seen the video. They also have the best donation rate (5.5% of website visitors). The website is also popular amongst Arab populations.

See below for more interesting results:

Top 20 Video Views Frequency

Country Internet Users Video Views Frequency (1 per x Internet Users)
Israel 5928772 1485 3992
Canada 33000381 870 37931
Norway 4895885 124 39483
New Zealand 4162209 94 44279
United States 303229759 5948 50980
Australia 21176595 413 51275
South Africa 24909854 481 51788
Palestinian Authority 2000000 38 52632
Singapore 4453859 80 55673
Puerto Rico 2027549 30 67585
Finland 5117660 72 71079
Iraq 2707928 29 93377
Netherlands 16143879 169 95526
United Kingdom 57075826 522 109341
Poland 25666238 229 112080
Malaysia 12150362 88 138072
Sweden 8581261 59 145445
Philippines 39470845 247 159801
Belgium 9441116 59 160019
Hong Kong 5751357 35 164324
Switzerland 7180749 39 184122


Top 25 Website Visitors

Country Website Visitors Frequency (1 per x Internet Users)
Israel 1283 4621
Palestinian Authority 111 18018
Iraq 134 20208
Norway 67 73073
Jordan 21 160729
Canada 128 257815
Australia 82 258251
United States 1026 295546
Egypt 67 601665
Switzerland 10 718075
United Kingdom 68 839350
Netherlands 19 849678
Italy 36 1016499
Mexico 50 1018461
Colombia 17 1509454
Argentina 14 1783833
Poland 14 1833303
Spain 16 2188142
France 23 2409973
Germany 24 2988648
Russia 26 3247607
Brazil 13 8294064

 

 Top Donors

Country Donors per Visitors Rate Donors
United States 3.62% 43
Israel 2.11% 41
Canada 5.48% 8
United Kingdom 3.90% 3
Finland 14.29% 2
Chile 16.67% 1
Sweden 14.29% 1
New Zealand 10.00% 1
Brazil 6.67% 1
Netherlands 5.00% 1
Italy 2.33% 1
Norway 1.20% 1
Australia 1.20% 1

 

Website Visitors by Language

Language Visitors
English 2028
Hebrew 512
Arabic 408
Spanish 180
French 83
Norwegian 89
Russian 93
Italian 76
Portuguese 14
Chinese – Simplified 16
Chinese – Traditional 27
German 13
Dutch 8
Persian 9
Hungarian 8
Korean 8
Turkish 7

 

Facebook Shares by Language

Language FB Shares
English 799
Spanish 149
Arabic 116
Hebrew 81
Persian 32
Russian 19
Norwegian 19
Italian 4
Chinese (traditional) 4
Chinese (simplified) 1
Turkish 1
German 0
French 0
Dutch 0
Hungarian (Magyar) 0
Portuguese 0
Korean 0

 

August 31st 2015. First Update

The website was launched on September 1st, and will end on November 27th, 2015. It is currently available in 17 languages! To the best of our knowledge no such crowdfunding campaign – addressing such a wide audience – has ever taken place, and we are also not aware of any archaeological projects that have used this funding method.

The idea to “crowd fund” the Temple Mount Sifting Project was originally suggested by Aran Yardeni about a year ago. He claimed that raising funds in this method would best suit our project, which allows the public to take an active role. The more we thought about it, we realized that in addition to the funding aspect, a crowd funding campaign can be a great tool through which to gain public exposure for the story of the Temple Mount and the Sifting Project.

We quickly realized the high potential of this campaign, and decided to translate the contents to many languages. . We believe that this cause is universal, and are very curious to see how this campaign will be received around the world.

The texts were mostly translated by volunteers. Please let us know if you notice any errors or have any suggestions. We also welcome volunteers who can translate the website to additional languages.

This page will continuously update developments in the campaign, as publish data concerning the exposure and donations from the various countries. Please stay tuned.

Now, let’s see who will gain the title of “‘the first donor on the website Wall of Fame’”.

Jeremy Gaston
2 년 ago
$120
United States  TX
Gause
Alexander Kats
2 년 ago
$50
Israel
Rishon Leziyyon
Hidden
2 년 ago
₪100
Israel  ישראל
אופקים
יצחק לוריא
2 년 ago
₪100
Israel
בית חורון
יעל זאבי
2 년 ago
₪100
Israel
שילה
Hidden
2 년 ago
₪250
Israel  ישראל
ירושלים
Bill Thompson
2 년 ago
$380
United States  Washington
College Place
Hidden
2 년 ago
$50
United States
gretna
Hidden
2 년 ago
₪180
Israel
נווה דניאל
Andrew Wachtel
2 년 ago
$750
United States  Ca
Beverly Hills
Andrew Wachtel
2 년 ago
$750
United States  CA
Beverly Hills
Samuel Bell
2 년 ago
$50
United States  Florida
Hawthorne
אביגדור אמיתי
2 년 ago
₪100
Israel
רמת גן
Hidden
2 년 ago
$50
United States  New Jersey
UPPER SADDLE RIVER
Hidden
2 년 ago
$100
United States  New York
MONROE
Hidden
2 년 ago
₪100
Israel
שוהם
יצחק פופר
2 년 ago
₪100
Israel
רמת מגשימים
אורי גינזבורג
2 년 ago
₪250
Israel
רמת גן
Neil Turner
2 년 ago
$50
United Kingdom  Northamptonshire
Watford
David Provost
2 년 ago
$20
United States  Alaska
Anchorage