As a local story tells us – in 1947 a local Bedouin was wondering around the Qumran Caves with his herd of sheep. To fight boredom, he began throwing rocks at a small cavern in the area. Suddenly, he heard a shattering voice. Looking inside, he came across a clay jar that contained ancient scrolls. According to history, the scrolls were said to have been sold to antique dealers, though this was after it has gotten into the hands of several people, trying to unravel the age and value of the parchments accurately.
As a result of the findings, many archeologists begun searching the area until more than 950 different manuscripts of various lengths were found. Most of the manuscripts were small fragments of the original scrolls. However, scholars have been able to reconstruct the fragments into 7 scrolls. The scrolls are approximately two thousand years old, dating from the third century BCE to the first century.
The discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls represents a turning point in the study of the history of the Jewish and Christian people in ancient times. Thanks to these scrolls, which are the oldest finding to date, we gained a lot of new information about Judaism and early Christianity.
To preserve the Scrolls, they are kept at an optimal temperature and humidity conditions, except for the Copper Scroll found in the 3rd Cave, which is not kept in the Shrine of the Book but the Amman Museum in Jordan.
In all, 12 caves and seven scrolls were found by the Bedouins. A lot of people have been trooping in to catch a glimpse of these amazing caves and the Dead Sea Scrolls. Apart from these, there are other things located in these caves that will surely take your breath away once you visit.