Kursi slab
1,500-year-old slab found in Israel points to first Judeo-Christian settlement in Kursi University of Haifa

Archaeologists in Israel have discovered a marble slab near to Lake Kinneret which could point to a Jewish settlement in the region as far back as 1,500 years ago. The slab was excavated in the Kinneret National Park and is a sign of the first Jewish or Judeo-Christian settlement within the region.

The tablet, archaeologists from the University of Haifa say, is thought to be a commemoration tablet dating back to 500AD and would have stood in an ancient synagogue. The inscription begins with "remembered for good", while others read "Amen" or "Marmariya" – which is believed to translate as "marble" but some researchers that this is a reference to Mary – the mother of Jesus.

Professor Michael Atzi of the University of Haifa's Leon Recanati Institute for Maritime Studies told Israel's Channel 10: "This first evidence points to the existence of a Jewish settlement and strengthens the theory, which until now has been folklore, that the settlement is Kursi – the place Jesus visited and performed the famous 'Miracle of the Swine' according to the New Testament."

Atzi continued: "The existence of a Jewish settlement on the eastern shores of the Galilee is a very rare thing. Until now we had no proof that Jewish settlements, which have disappeared over the years, did actually exist at that time near the Galilee's shores, except for Migdal." Migdal Synagogue was discovered in 2009.

Furthermore this religious finding holds more significance, as in 500AD archaeologists believe that said area was Kursi, where Jesus performed the Miracle of the Swine. According to the New Testament, Christ visited Kursi and here he is alleged to have healed two men who were possessed by Demons by pushing them into a herd of pigs.