JERUSALEM (AP) — An Israeli archaeologist says he has found the legendary citadel captured by King David in his conquest of Jerusalem, rekindling a longstanding debate about using the Bible as a field guide to identifying ancient ruins.
The claim by Eli Shukron joins a string of announcements by Israeli archaeologists saying they have unearthed palaces of the legendary biblical king. David is revered in Jewish religious tradition for establishing Jerusalem as its holy city, but has long eluded historians looking for clear-cut evidence of his existence and reign.
The fortification Shukron discovered was built 800 years before King David would have captured it from its Jebusite rulers.
In the Bible's second Book of Samuel, David orders the capture of the walled city by entering it through the water shaft. Shukron's excavation uncovered a narrow shaft where spring water flowed into a carved pool and another shaft where excess water would have flowed out of the walled city.
Shukron's dig, which began in 1995, was made accessible to tourists last month.