Archaeologists in Israel have recently unearthed a 2,700 years old private toilet that used to be fancy back in its heyday.
The ancient toilet cubicle was part of an excavation of a former royal mansion in Jerusalem that overlooks the City of David archaeological site and the Temple Mount, CNN reported from the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA).
It was a rare finding for archaeologists as private bathrooms were a privilege reserved for the elite only back in the Kings of Judah period thousands of years ago.
“This is a very rare find because this is something that only the rich people had,” said the director of the excavation, Yaakov Billig, who noted only a few have been found in Israel and Jerusalem.
Situated above a septic tank in a rectangular cabin is a toilet carved from limestone, which has a comfortable seat and a hole in the center, IAA said.
“So whoever is sitting there would be very comfortable,” Billig said.
According to Live Science, the excavation team also found 30 to 40 bowls, which Billig believed were used to contain aromatic oil or incense to freshen up the facility.
Left under the tank were a handful of pottery and animal bones. Experts have collected samples of the materials, including the soil beneath the tank, to discover more about the lifestyles, diets, and diseases.
Close to the toilet, the archaeologists found ornamental trees, fruit trees, aquatic plants, and other garden traces. Then, looking on a larger scale, they saw stone capitals with typical carvings of the time, in addition to window frames and railings.
“It is fascinating to see how something that is obvious to us today, such as toilets, was a luxury item during the reign of the kings of Judah,” said IAA director Eli Eskosido, according to a press release. “Jerusalem never ceases to amaze.”
CNN reported from the IAA that the royal estate functioned during the conclusion of the Kings of Judah period, which dates back to the 7th century BCE before Israel was defeated by the Assyrians.
“One can only imagine the breathtaking view. I am convinced that the glorious past of the city will continue to be revealed to us in the future and will allow us to experience and learn about our past,” Eskosido said.