Sediment samples swiped from 2,700-year-old privy reveal the presence of intestinal worm eggs that would have caused abdominal pain, diarrhea and itching

Ancient toilet shows Jerusalem’s rich wallowed in luxury – and discomfort
by Stuart Winer
January 4, 2022

Archaeological research on a 2,700-year-old toilet uncovered in Jerusalem found that its owners were wealthy but suffered from a range of intestinal parasites that would have blighted their digestive tracts, leading to abdominal pain and itchiness, Tel Aviv University and the Israel Antiques Authority said Tuesday. Worm eggs, identified in sediment samples taken from a cesspit below the stone toilet, belonged to four different types of intestinal parasites, roundworm, tapeworm, whipworm, and pinworm. The pit, which was found in an ancient villa, was capped with a square limestone slab with a hole in its center, identifying the facility as a toilet during excavations. READ MORE

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