Facebook users managed to identify a mysterious relic that had stumped archeological experts for six months.
Facebook’s huge user base managed to solve the mystery of a strange gilded object that was unearthed in Jerusalem within a few hours of its photo going up on Facebook. This week, the social media giant’s database helped Israel’s Antiquities Authority identify a mysterious gilded object, which was initially thought to be an ancient Jewish relic. It turns out the relic was a modern New Age device.
Exasperated with their inability to identify the object, which was suspected to be some ancient Jewish relic, Israel Antiquities Authority turned to social media. Within hours, one of the hundreds of responders had managed to identify the gilded object as a Weber Isis Beamer, a very modern-day device that is regularly used by pseudo-scientists.
Director of theft prevention Amir Ganor confirmed his office had received an alert from the local police six months ago about a gilded object. The mysterious object, which had a very peculiar shape and featured seven grooves, was initially believed to be a stolen relic, reported Fox News. The object was found in a Jerusalem cemetery, which piqued the interest of many archeologists and raised the mystery factor about the gilded and polished object. The object appeared to be finely polished and had small globules at both the ends and seven grooves in the center. The craftsmanship was excellent and confused experts who didn’t know to which period the object belonged or its purpose.
The object was initially discovered by a maintenance worker. Suspecting it to be some type of explosive, he called the police, who in turn alerted the bomb squad. The plan was to achieve a controlled explosion, but authorities soon realized it was quite harmless. The integrity of the object wasn’t harmed in any way, which led many to believe that it was some ancient artifact that was long forgotten. Since it appeared golden, many believed it was quite old. Gold doesn’t corrode and remains largely unaffected by atmospheric conditions. As a result, it was difficult to relate the object to any time period. It weighed close to eight kilograms and appeared solid.
Ganor confirmed that his office thoroughly X-rayed the object, which was believed to be some type of scepter. Extensive material identification techniques were employed, but the scepter didn’t spill its secret. Ganor theorized it might have been used in the biblical Jewish temples.
“At first we thought it was a military object, but then began to dream. I have been in this business for a long time and cannot recall such a mystery.”
When experts failed to make heads or tails of the object after six months, they posted a picture on Facebook asking for help, reported Ummid. Within a few hours, the Israel Antiquities Authority’s page received over 300 responses. While most of them had multiple theories about the origins and possible uses of the relic, one of the 300 responders identified the object as a Weber Isis Beamer. The device, an “invention” of modern times, wasn’t any ancient relic, but was a German device that claims to create “a protective field” against radiation and, according to the authority’s Facebook update, is “intended for the use of naturopaths and people dealing with energy healing”.
Extolling the beneficial aspects of social media and thanking Facebook, the authority said, “The wisdom of the masses has done its part.”
The man who correctly identified the object was identified as Micah Barak from Italy. He was the first to solve the mystery of the relic. Apparently, the object is readily available online in various sizes and costs about $131 (120 Euros). The company that makes them claims they will “ensure energy harmony” at home, at work and when traveling. Barak has been invited to visit Jerusalem to see the object up close, reported Yahoo News.
[Photo by Israel Antiquities Authority]