BAR 31:02, Mar/Apr 2005
The Miraculous Waters of Ein Tzur
The Bordeaux Pilgrim, the anonymous traveler who visited the Holy Land in 333 C.E. and left us the earliest surviving Christian pilgrims itinerary, calls the part of the Carmel range near Ramat Hanadiv Mount Syna and locates it after the third milestone from Caesarea.
He makes particular note of the spring we now call Ein Tzur. Women who wash in it become pregnant, he tells us.
Our most important find at the spring was a hoard of more than 2,000 coins dating from the early fourth century C.E. to the seventh century C.E. They were probably thrown in the spring by women seeking cures for their infertility as a kind of wishing-well when the spring served as a fertility shrine.
During the Byzantine period, the water of Ein Tzur was linked by aqueduct to nearby Shuni, where a shrine said to cure various diseases was located. The Shuni cure was a popular destination for the people of Caesarea.