Ancient Toilets in Beth Shean
Ancient toilets in Beth Shean can be seen lining three sides of a large open room. These were luxury toilets of the upper class Romans. There was no individual privacy, the toilet was used and then you washed and left. These would have been connected to the bath house next door in some way.
According to the Historian, Josephus and writings found among the Dead Sea Scrolls, there was an arrangement on three sides of the room with toilets. The lids were either wooden or stone. Holes were punctured in several places on the toilet itself. The toilets were mounted in such a way that there was a low stream of water that flowed from the bath house. This running water served to carry off the sewage. In front of the toilet at the floor was a small gutter that cleaned any spillage. This gutter also had running water. No toilet paper was used in these ancient toilets. Instead, they used sponges on sticks. They would dip the sponges into the water in the gutter and wash themselves. They also used this fresh water to wash their hands.
These interesting and ancient toilets relied on fresh water that was pumped from the aqueducts. Because of the need for fresh running water they were usually connected to bath houses or other public buildings. Rarely were these ancient toilets found in private Roman homes. There would have been no access to running water.
These unique and interesting ancient toilets probably supply us with more questions than answers. We have very little information on the toilet habits of the Romans. How they dealt with sanitation and division of the sexes is also open to further exploration. While it is interesting just how they designed these toilets, their use is a mystery. One thing is certain, these ancient toilets of ancient times provides plenty of room for your imagination to work. The ruins of Beth Shean are alive with adventure. Anyone wanting to discover how the ancient people lived their lives will enjoy these Roman ruins. The Roman and Greek ruins are everywhere. They are fascinating! They are magnificent! So come on over to the Holy Land. Here you can discover the lifestyle of an ancient people.
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