US: Student finds precious gem at Israeli dig

A 2,300-year-old gemstone delicately carved with a portrait of Alexander the Great was discovered by a University of Washington student on an archaeological dig in Israel, a professor at the school says, reports The Seattle Times.

"This is an incredibly rare find," said Sarah Stroup, a University of Washington associate professor of classics who led a group of 20 Washington students who took part in the summer dig. "The carving is of the highest quality that could have been done in that period."

The carnelian stone, less than a half-inch long, was found at the Tel Dor archaeological site on Israel's northwest coast. It is believed to date from shortly after 332 BC, when Alexander conquered the region. The carving shows Alexander "as young and forceful, with a strong chin, straight nose and long curly hair held in place by a diadem," Ayelet Gilboa, chairman of the archaeology department at Israel's University of Haifa, said in a news release.
Full report on The Seattle Times site