Israel to open exhibit on biblical King Herod

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Photo -   A restorer at the Israel Museum works on a reassembled display of what curators say was Herod's tomb in the Israeli museum, Jerusalem, Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2012. Israel's national museum is opening the world's first exhibition on King Herod, displaying what it says are the reconstructed tomb and sarcophagus of one of antiquity's most towering and despised figures. Palestinians object to the exhibit because it displays artifacts from West Bank sites. Archaeology official Hamdan Taha says the project was not coordinated with the Palestinians, and is against international law. The museum says it will return the antiquities when the exhibit closes in 9 months. (AP Photo/Daniel Estrin)
A restorer at the Israel Museum works on a reassembled display of what curators say was Herod's tomb in the Israeli museum, Jerusalem, Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2012. Israel's national museum is opening the world's first exhibition on King Herod, displaying what it says are the reconstructed tomb and sarcophagus of one of antiquity's most towering and despised figures. Palestinians object to the exhibit because it displays artifacts from West Bank sites. Archaeology official Hamdan Taha says the project was not coordinated with the Palestinians, and is against international law. The museum says it will return the antiquities when the exhibit closes in 9 months. (AP Photo/Daniel Estrin)
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JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel's national museum is preparing an exhibition on King Herod, the Jewish ruler under Roman occupation two millennia ago.

The display, billed as the world's first on Herod, includes a reconstructed tomb and sarcophagus of Herod, known for huge building projects, including the biblical Jewish Second Temple in Jerusalem.

The exhibit features about 30 tons of findings from his lavish palaces.

Israel Museum director James Snyder said Tuesday it's the museum's largest and most expensive archaeological project to date. The exhibit opens Feb. 12.

Palestinians object to the exhibit because it displays artifacts from West Bank sites. Archaeology official Hamdan Taha says the project was not coordinated with the Palestinians and violates international law.

The museum says it will return the antiquities after the exhibit closes in nine months.

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