Queen of Sheba’s palace discovered in Ethiopia

By Catherine Hickley

(Bloomberg) — A team of archaeologists from the University of Hamburg said they discovered the Queen of Sheba’s palace and an altar that may have once held the Ark of the Covenant in Axum, Ethiopia.

A Christian king built a new palace over the 10th-century B.C. structure, which probably didn’t survive for very long, the university said in a statement. The altar, oriented toward the star Sirius, has two columns and may have been where the Ark of the Covenant, the holiest treasure of early Judaism, was kept until the first temple was built in Axum, the researchers said.

“The special significance of this altar must have been handed down over centuries,” the statement said. “This is shown by the many sacrifices found around this spot.”

The Ark of the Covenant, featured in the Indiana Jones movie “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” was kept in Jerusalem for centuries, according to the Old Testament. After Jerusalem was conquered by the Babylonians in the 6th century B.C., the ark’s fate isn’t documented in the Bible and it entered the realm of legend.

Ethiopian Christians contend that the ark left Jerusalem much earlier — during the realm of Solomon — and was brought to Ethiopia, where it has long been enshrined in a church and is now accessible only to its guardian, a monk. This theory was explored by the British author Graham Hancock in “The Sign and the Seal.”

Fate of the Ark

The Hamburg team led by Helmut Ziegert has for nine years been investigating the origins of the Ethiopian state and the Ethiopian orthodox church. The central purpose of the field trip was to find out how Judaism arrived in Ethiopia in the 10th century B.C., and to seek clues to the present location of the Ark of the Covenant, the university said.

The palace built over the Queen of Sheba’s home was also aligned with the star Sirius, the statement said. The researchers conjecture that the second palace was built by Menelik, who, legend has it, was the son of Sheba and King Solomon.

The results of the Hamburg field trip suggest that together with Judaism and the Ark of the Covenant, a cult worshipping Sirius came to Ethiopia and practiced its religion until about 600 A.D., the university said.

According to the Old Testament, God ordered Moses to build the Ark of the Covenant, a box made of acacia wood and plated with gold. It is believed to have contained the tablets listing the Ten Commandments.
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To contact the reporter on this story: Catherine Hickley in Berlin at chickley@bloomberg.net.

10 comments on “Queen of Sheba’s palace discovered in Ethiopia

  1. Assta B. Gettu on

    The discovery of the famous Queen of Sheba’s palace in Ethiopia confirms she was indeed the Queen of Ethiopia who visited Solomon and from him gave birth to a son, Menelik I, and the presence of the Ark of the Covenant indicates that Judaism has had a deep root in Ethiopia.

  2. Ye Tigray sew on

    The defunct EPRDF would have us believed that we have a 100 years of history, but as foreign scientists confirm, infact, we have a history of more than 3000 years and a history that is the envy of many nations around the world. The meles government devoid of knolwedge in Ethiopian history and devoid of Ethiopian manners is making great blunder in undermining the making of the Ethiopian empire. God bless Ethiopia. Princes shall come out of Egypt; Ethiopia shall soon stretch out her hands unto God (Psalm 68:31)

  3. comechambawe on

    dear assta

    have u ever observed that contemporey ethiopian society have lived worst than dark age.people like u rush to glorify something which has no value to ethiopians.who cares about sheba!!!. stop using the effect as a basis to glorify ur empty slagon without bothering to explore cause.what we ethiopian need is open and realistic discussion of our situation.our ethiopia has been a victim of both dectator intellectual and ignorants.enough is enough ,abo

  4. Guramaile on

    BIG NOTICE:
    Folks the true Ark of the Covenant is available only and only in Ethiopia.
    These woyannes will not hesitate to exchange every thing for money.I want to know the presence of this valuable and historical material,i doubt it might be sold.Aba Paulos may exchanged it for pistol.
    Mister Editor please take the issue very serious and update your viewers.

  5. Assta B. Gettu on

    I understand many of the problems my Ethiopian people are facing under the contumacious Dictator Meles Seitanawi, and we have been discussing these problems for almost twenty years, and yet we have not come with a solution; if you have one, let us hear it. Any way, you wrote: “stop using the effect as a basis to glorify ur empty slogan without bothering to explore cause.”

    Tell me which one is the effect and which one is the empty slogan? If you are an educated person, I hope, you are, some effects happen without causes, and if you think there is a cause for every effect, you are wrong. For example, what is the cause that we are here on this earth, and why is there a universe? It seems you are just a carper or a yammerer who doesn’t like historical facts as far as he has something to fill his belly; isn’t Jesus right when he said: “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4). People as cynic as you are detest historical facts such as that Queen Sheba was indeed the Queen of Ethiopia, and Menelik I was her son who went to visit his father King Solomon and came back with thousands of Jews, carrying the Ark of the Covenant with them. If I understand you clearly, what you are saying is “let us forget our history and concentrate on the present conditions of the Ethiopian people.” How fool you are! We can discuss the problems without forgetting our past glorious history. Don’t bother people from discussing their past history; after all, the poor are always with us, and we will never solve all the problems.

  6. Assta B. Gettu on

    My dear comechambawe,

    I understand many of the problems my Ethiopian people are facing under the contumacious Dictator Meles Seitanawi, and we have been discussing these problems for almost twenty years, and yet we have not come with a solution; if you have one, let us hear it. Any way, you wrote: “stop using the effect as a basis to glorify ur empty slogan without bothering to explore cause.”

    Tell me which one is the effect and which one is the empty slogan? If you are an educated person, I hope, you are, some effects happen without causes, and if you think there is a cause for every effect, you are wrong. For example, what is the cause that we are here on this earth, and why is there a universe? It seems you are just a carper or a yammerer who doesn’t like historical facts as far as he has something to fill his belly; isn’t Jesus right when he said: “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4). People as cynic as you are detest historical facts such as that Queen Sheba was indeed the Queen of Ethiopia, and Menelik I was her son who went to visit his father King Solomon and came back with thousands of Jews, carrying the Ark of the Covenant with them. If I understand you clearly, what you are saying is “let us forget our history and concentrate on the present conditions of the Ethiopian people.” How fool you are! We can discuss the problems without forgetting our past glorious history. Don’t bother people from discussing their past history; after all, the poor are always with us, and we will never solve all the problems.

  7. comechambawe on

    dear assta , i am sick and tired of historical controversies which keep being generated by ppl like you who have only gossip interest.how could there be effect without cause? if there were no cause we have no reason to exist.u just use queen sheba as a base to further ur historical foolishness.a man with empety stomach has no interest to hear either logic or history. his primery objective is to find bread and eat it.the same is true with our people. my proposition to ppl like u is to have realistic view which can curve a little bit our ppl social ,political and economy pains. i thank u my brother

  8. Assta B. Gettu on

    My dear comechambawe,

    You want me to teach you about effect and cause: Effect can happen without a cause. For example, our being on this earth is an effect, a reality, but we do not scientifically prove the cause of our being here on this earth.

    Cause without effect: One day when I was walking, I saw a dead bird, but I do not know how the bird died. So the cause of its dead body remains unknown to me. Another example is that scientists still do not know the cause of AIDS. Since you are a learned person, you may know it; tell us please.

    I clearly understand I’m talking to a person whose stomach is his god, a person who believes that the study of history is foolishness, and a person who is a member of those who say: “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we will die,” instead of saying: “Let us pray and fast, for tomorrow we will die.” You are not a person of history; rather you are a person of only eating and drinking, and such a person is called in Amharic “hod-amlaku” – his stomach is his god.

    Back to history to the history lovers: Queen Sheba was the Queen of Ethiopia, and she had only one son from King Solomon, and his name was Menelik I. When Menelik grew up, he visited his father King Solomon in Jerusalem, and Solomon was elated to see his beloved son from that beautiful Queen of Ethiopia – Queen Sheba who had showered the King with costly and priceless gifts. Knowing his son wanted to go back to Ethiopia, King Solomon blessed his son Menelik and sent him back to Ethiopia with thousands of Jews and many Levites with the Ark of the Covenant.

    Back to the food lovers: If people work hard and have a democratically elected leader, they will always have something to eat, something to drink, and something to wear. St. Paul’s advice to the Thessalonians was: ‘If a man will not work, he shall not eat’ (2Thessalonians 3:10). We can use Paul’s advice in order to survive in this greedy world and teach our people to solve their food problems and to know their past history so that they can be proud of their Ethiopian ancestors.

  9. sonny on

    Interesting discussion here. I am not from your parts of the world, but I have a HUGE interest in it, albeit for other hstorical reasons. My question is: when Magda was queen of Sheba, and her son, Menelik was the succeeding heir, was Sheba in Ethiopia at the time, or was Sheba in Yemen?

    I have read differing accounts, but I would like to ask those who actually live in the regions, and know the histories, rather than read Western versions of indigenous histories.

    Thanx,

    Sonny.

  10. Daddio on

    We lived in Ethiopia in the late 60’s and visited the ruins of Queen of Sheba’s palace back then.

    I know this is an “old” news story but it’s funny how archeologist’s make this claim. It’s been known about for quite some time ;)

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