Archaeologists find theater box at Herod's palace

Sep 21, 2010
Frescos discovered in the Herodium complex, in the West Bank, south of Jerusalem, Tuesday, Sept. 21, 2010. Israeli archaeologists have excavated a lavish private box in a 400-seat theater located at King Herod's winter palace in the Judean desert. Head archaeologist Ehud Netzer says Herod commissioned Roman artists to decorate the theater walls with elaborate paintings and plaster moldings around 15 B.C. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)

(AP) -- Israeli archaeologists have excavated a lavish, private theater box in a 400-seat facility at King Herod's winter palace in the Judean desert.

Archaeologists at Jerusalem's Hebrew University say the room provides further evidence of King Herod's famed taste for extravagance.

Herod was the Jewish proxy ruler of the Holy Land under Roman occupation from 37 to 4 B.C. He is known for his extensive building throughout the area.

Head archaeologist Ehud Netzer says Herod commissioned Roman artists to decorate the theater walls with elaborate paintings and plaster moldings around 15 B.C.

The upper portions feature of windows overlooking a river and a seascape with a large sailboat.

The team first excavated the site in 2007.

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