A cryptic cup, ancient Jerusalem tunnels and other archaeological finds may help solve who wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls, according to some scientists.
The Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered more than 60 years ago in caves near the ancient settlement of Qumran. Researchers have thought a Jewish sect called the Essenes wrote the text on the parchment and papyrus scrolls.
But new research, including the decoding of the cup, suggest the scrolls came from elsewhere and were written by multiple Jewish groups, some fleeing the 70 A.D. Roman siege that destroyed the Temple in Jerusalem.
And some believe the scrolls may have been so important they are "the great treasure from the Jerusalem Temple," which held the Ark of the Covenant, according to the Bible.
Jews wrote the Scrolls, but it may not have been just one specific group. It could have been groups of different Jews," says Robert Cargill, an archaeologist who appears in the documentary Writing the Dead Sea Scrolls on The National Geographic Channel.
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