Thematic Collections | The Israel Museum, Jerusalem



Adjust the interface to make it easier to use for different conditions.
Visitor Info


To the accessibility map of the Museum
We strive to make the Museum as accessible as possible for disabled visitors
  • Marked handicapped parking is available near the main entrance to the Museum, and the Second Temple Model.
  • An audio system for the hearing-impaired is available at ticket counters.
  • Counters are wheelchair accessible.
  • Discounts on admission to holders of a disabled identification card.
  • Discounts on admission to wheelchair users (admission is free to an escort).
  • Free admission to blind and visually impaired visitors and their escort.
The Campus
  • Entrance to the Museum and interior passages are wheelchair accessible.
  • Wheelchairs and lockers are available in the entrance pavilion.
  • A cloakroom and folding chairs are available near the elevators.
  • A transit vehicle for four is available to those who have difficulty walking through the Route of Passage.
  • Elevators, stair lifts, and ramps are available in the various galleries (* there is no Shabbat elevator)
  • Museum’s restaurants and shops are wheelchair accessible.
  • Maps in various languages are available (details at the Information Desk).
  • Wheelchair accessible stalls are available in rest rooms.
Art Garden
* The Art Garden is inaccessible to wheelchair users (observation points overlook the garden).
Visitor Info

Events All of Today's Events

Guided Tours


Visitor Info

Opening Hours

Free entrance for children under 18 (excluding groups and workshops) on Tues, and Sat thoughout the year, courtesy of the Canadian Friends of the Israel Museum and David and Inez Myers, Cleveland, Ohio

Free entrance for soldiers doing compulsory military service and for those doing National Service, courtesy of Israeli Friends of the Israel Museum

Rockefeller Museum is closed on Tues, Fri, and Holiday Eves
Ticho House is closed on Saturdays


Visitor Info


Ticho House

Sun to Thurs 12 pm - 8 pm
Fri and holiday eves 10 am - 2 pm
​Sat closed

10 HaRav Agan Street
Tel: 645 3746,

Rockefeller Museum

Sun, Mon, Wed, Thurs 10 am – 3 pm
Sat 10 am – 2 pm
Closed Tues, Fri and Holiday Eves

27 Sultan Suleiman St.
Tel: 628 2251

Visitor Info

Campus Map

Museum Gallery Map
Visitor Info

Directions and Transportation

Find Us
The Israel Museum is located in Jerusalem on 11 Ruppin Boulevard, Hakyria, near the Knesset (Israeli Parliament).
The Israel Museum, Jerusalem
POB 71117
Jerusalem, 9171002
Tel: 972-2-670-8811
Fax: 972-2-677-1332
By Bus
Bus lines: 7, 9, 14, 35, 66
Direct from Tel Aviv, line 100 from Shapirim Junction Parking
Information and schedules »
or dial Kol Kav *8787
By Car
Parking for cars and bicycles outside the Museum
GPS - Avraham Granot Street
WAZE - Israel Museum
Parking available for Museum visitors. Limited number of parking spaces.
Museum visitors are requested to retain entrance tickets, or receipts from Museum stores, or restaurants for presentation at the exit booth of the parking lot.
Ticho House
10 HaRav Agan Street, Jerusalem
Free entrance 
Tel: 02 645-3746 
The Rockefeller Museum
POB 71117
91710 Jerusalem 
Tel: for groups: 02 670-8074
Fax: 02 670-8063
Visitor Info


Modern, the Museum's kosher meat restaurant, is designed in an early modernist style. It offers contemporary Jerusalem cuisine and a rich collection of quality wines. Adjoining a plaza and overlooking the Valley of the Cross, this restaurant specializes in hosting private and business events. 
Modern is kosher meat, under the supervision of the Chief Rabbinate of Jerusalem. Dining in the restaurant does not require purchase of an admissions ticket to the Museum. Museum members and Friends of the Israel Museum are entitled to a 10% discount. 
Parking is free and the restaurant is accessible to all. 
Open: Sun, Mon, Wed,Thurs from 11:30 am - 5 pm, Tues 11:30 am - 11 pm, Fri 10 am - 2 pm 
For inquiries: 02 648-0862.
To arrange events: 054-778-8558; 054-304-0279; 
See Modern's website »

Mansfeld, the Museum's dairy cafés, are named after Al Mansfeld, the first architect of the Israel Museum and winner of the Israel Prize for Architecture for his design of the Museum. The café's rich menu includes home-baked goods, cakes, sandwiches, salads and hot dishes. The café is suitable for hosting private events.
Mansfeld is kosher dairy under the supervision of the Chief Rabbinate of Jerusalem. 
Dining in the café does not require purchase of an admissions ticket to the Museum. Museum members and Friends of the Israel Museum are entitled to a 10% discount. 
Parking is free and the restaurant is accessible to all. 
Open: Sun, Mon, Wed, Thurs 8 am - 5 pm | Tues 8 am - 9 pm | Fri 8 am - 2 pm. 
For inquiries: 02 563-6280; Fax: 02 561-8399;
To arrange events: 054-884-7133 or 050-997-8800
See Mansfeld's website »

Chic Café
Chic Café is a dairy café located at the entrance to the Model of Jerusalem in the Second Temple Model. The menu includes fine coffee and cold drinks, sandwiches, salads (soups in the winter), cakes, ice cream and snacks. 
Dining in the café does not require purchase of an admissions ticket to the Museum. Museum members and Friends of the Israel Museum are entitled to a 10% discount. 
Parking is free and the restaurant is accessible to all. 
Open Sun Mon Wed Thurs 8 am - 5 pm; Tues 8 am - 6 pm; Fri 8 am - 2 pm, Sat 8 am - 5 pm 
Cafe Tel: 02 633-2555,


Anna Italian Café 

Ticho House
10 HaRav Agan Street
Sun – Thurs 9 am – 11 pm 
Fri 9 am – 3 pm 
Kosher dairy, Jerusalem Rabbinate 
Tel: 02 543-4144

Anna Italian Café »

Visitor Info


Museum Information
Please feel free to contact Museum Information with any questions.
Tel: 02 670-8811
Cloakroom and folding chairs
A cloakroom and folding chairs are available at the end of the Route of Passage, next to the elevators. Please inquire at the Information Desk.
Wheelchairs and disabled access
Wheelchairs are available in the Entrance Pavilion. Please inquire at the Information Desk for details. Much of the Israel Museum is wheelchair-accessible, and an ongoing renovation program continues to improve access for the disabled. Wheelchair-accessible places include the entrance pavilion, the Shrine of the Book, and the Model of Jerusalem in the Second Temple Period. Download the PDF accessibility map of the campus. Accessibility in the Museum »
Parking available for Museum visitors. Limited number of parking spaces. Museum visitors are requested to retain entrance tickets, or receipts from Museum stores or restaurants for presentation at the exit booth of the parking lot. Bicycle parking Available in the entrance plaza of the Museum
Audio guides
Audio guides for some permanent exhibitions in selected languages are included in the Museum entrance fee and are available at the Entrance Pavilion. The exhibitions include: The Shrine of the Book, the Second Temple Model and the Art Garden. Audio guides are also appropriate for hearing impaired visitors.
Visitor Info

Museum Stores

Shop online

We are committed to bringing you the best that Israel has to offer. Whether you’re looking for exquisite jewelry made with materials unique to Israel, organic farm-fresh preserves, world-renowned Dead Sea skincare or home décor from internally acclaimed Israeli artists, we’ll send it to you straight from Israel.

Go Shopping »

Take the Museum experience home with you

Everyone buys gifts, but only at the Israel Museum shops do they come with a story. Each story reveals a new, and exciting world - all inspired by from the vast and unique collections of the Museum, from both the permanent exhibitions and special exhibitions. Discover the story behind specially-produced articles to make your your Museum experience linger on.

* Special benefits and discounts for Museum Members and an additional 10% discount on all products.

Be inspired
Discover items inspired by the Shrine of the Book, the Ahava (Love) sculpture from the Art Garden, a wide range of Judaica items; Hanukkah menorahs, wine cups, candlesticks, and more. Choose from the many children's products, as well as the exclusive and distinctive jewelry created by top Israeli and international designers.
Museum Stores
The three stores are located: at the entrance to the Second Temple Model, on the central cardo of the Museum opposite the Bella and Harry Wexner Gallery, and the main store in the entrance pavilion. No entrance fee required to the main store and parking is free!
Israel Museum Products, Ltd.
Israel Museum Products, Ltd. is an Israel Museum commercial corporation which operates three stores on the Museum campus. The company holds exclusive rights to create products for the Israel Museum inspired by the Museum's collection of unique items and temporary exhibitions. The company is committed to the inclusion of disadvantaged sectors, both in its stores and among workers involved in the product development and manufacture, in cooperation with various foundations and the Ministry of Economy and Industry. Special benefits and discounts for Museum Members and an additional 10% discount on all products.
Visitor Info


Become a Member
For annual Membership fees »
Sign up online »
Benifits, discounts and special activities
Check the Member's Page for ongoing Membership benefits: exhibitions pre-openings just for members, special lectures, guided tours in the Museum and at other cultural institutions, discounts and more.
Give a Museum Membership to those you love - the gift that people love to get.
Purchase a membership for a friend and gain an additional month on your own membership for free. Please call for more details Tel: 02 670-8855
Visitor Info

Purchase tickets online to the Museum and events
Full-cost tickets may be purchased online or at the box office. Please note that discount tickets for children and youth, students, seniors, disabled visitors, IDF soldiers, National Service personnel, repeat visits within three months, and Jerusalem Resident cardholders are available only at the box office.







Children and teens (aged 5 to 17)  Free on Tues and Sat  (except groups and workshops)


Senior Citizen (Upon presentation of official Israeli Ezrach Vatik ID)
(Cannot be purchased online)


Senior Citizen (Upon presentation of official Senior Citizen International ID)
(Cannot be purchased online)




Soldier / National Service (Upon presentation of suitable ID)


Repeat Visit (within 3 months) (No double discounts)


Free admission for children (aged 5 to 17) throughout August (does not apply to groups and does not include performances and workshops)


Leumi 1+1 cardholders, Discount on tickets purchased in advance on the Leumi Card website, (No double discounts)

Please note: Tickets to the Museum are valid for two years from the date of purchase.
For information about special cultural events and purchasing tickets online »
Free audio guide for hearing impaired visitors included with all tickets.

Terms and conditions

  • Tickets may be purchased online only at full cost for adults
  • Collection of tickets is conditional upon presentation of the credit card used to purchase the tickets
  • A ticket is valid until the stub is torn from the ticket or until the bar code is scanned at the entrance to the Museum
  • A ticket is valid only for one admission and one reentry on the day of the visit
  • There are no multiple discounts
  • Admission tickets to the Museum do not include admission to events, performances, or workshops to which additional fees are charged
  • Possession of an admission ticket only permits the visitor to enter the Museum campus 
  • Tickets may be collected at the ticket office or at automated ticket vendors, located at the Museum Entrance Pavilion

Inscribed Hebrew Seals, Israelite period

Thematic Collections

A reaper's plea,  Mezad Hashavyahu,  Iron Age II, 7th century BCE

Early Hebrew Writing

The invention of the alphabet at the beginning of the second millennium BCE was a revolution that lead to the spread of literacy. Unlike Mesopotamian cuneiform, or Egyptian hieroglyphs, which required the knowledge of hundreds of signs, the alphabet was comprised of less than 30 symbols, thus greatly simplifying reading and writing. The alphabetic revolution is illustrated in the gallery through numerous artifacts, such as the dedication to the goddess Elat, inscribed on a jug, discovered at the Lachish excavations in a Canaanite temple dated to the 13th century BCE.

The order of the letters as we know today was established over 3,000 year ago, as evident in the inscribed potsherd discovered in Izbet Sartah near Rosh ha-Ayin. The unique characteristics of ancient Hebrew script crystallized during the 10th and 9th centuries BCE, but only ca. 800 BCE did it spread throughout Israel and Judah.

Hebrew inscriptions were found on royal stelae, on sacred objects, documents, seals, and on various vessels; they were engraved on stone, and other hard materials, or written on papyrus, pottery (ostraca were "notes" on potsherds) or on bone; some were written by professional scribes, whereas others were written by less experienced hands. Particularly noteworthy are the Hebrew seals made out of semiprecious stones, ivory, bone and metal. These seals, like many other discovered, were used primarily to stamp documents and containers, as a mark of ownership.

A letter from a reaper addressed to "the governor", pleading to have his cloak returned to him, offers a rare glimpse into the biblical justice system. Letters found in Lachish’s city gate offer a firsthand report of the city’s guards' emotions as they watch the Judahite strongholds around them fall to the Babylonian army one by one.

The Hebrew inscriptions on display are a fascinating testimony to all facets of Judahite and Israelite societies in biblical times - from the royal court, through priestly circles, industry and commerce, and daily life. The Museum collection is one of the world's most important collections of Biblical Hebrew inscriptions.

The ancient Hebrew script was in use up to the destruction of the first temple. When the exiles returned from Babylon to Judah, they already spoke and wrote Aramaic, a script, which is the precursor of today's Hebrew script.

Ancient Hebrew script reappeared from time to time, in a more limited way; often in religious contexts (the Dead Sea Scrolls) or  symbolically, in times of national crisis (the coins minted during the Bar Kochba revolt, for example).

 Dr. Eran Arie, Frieder Burda Curator of Iron Age and Persian Periods

 Ashkelon, mid-5th century BCE

Coins in Context

From the time they were introduced some 2,600 years ago, coins have been an integral part of daily life. Prior to this, people weighed out metal on scales in order to pay for goods; with the introduction of coins, however, standardized pieces of metal of fixed denominations and weights were used instead. This innovation first appeared in western Asia Minor (Turkey), in the ancient kingdom of Lydia, at the end of the 7th century BCE, and was rapidly adopted throughout the Greek world. Inhabitants of our region began using coins in the mid-5th century BCE.

Though small in size, coins are nevertheless important historical documents, providing direct, tangible evidence for events and individuals otherwise known only from ancient literary sources or not known at all. Deciphering the language of coins enables us to retrace the development of cities and states and uncover the aims and aspirations of rulers. The designs and inscriptions provide a wealth of information about the societies that minted the coins and the people who used them.

A selection of coins from the late seventh century BCE to the present are displayed in the gallery. They tell the story of the society and civilization that minted them; their religion and culture. The images and inscriptions they bear reveal details and chronicles on the development of cities and states, or important events; shedding light on the policies, and aspirations of their rulers.

The coins in the gallery, among them some of the oldest ever minted in Ancient Israel, reveal a world of rich imagery, expressing local beliefs. Note the unique coin, minted in Philistia, and dated 5th century BCE. This coin depicts the forepart of a lion on the left and a lion’s hind part on the right, creating the illusion of a complete lion with its head in profile. When the coin is turned 90° counterclockwise, the image appears to be that of a bearded, helmeted male.

Some coins were accepted throughout the world, even far away from the place they were minted, and thus became international currency, the “dollar” of ancient times. For example, an Athenian silver tetradrachm (420–390 BCE) was discovered in ‘Atlit, on the northern shore of Israel. On one side the Greek goddess Athena is described, and on the other her symbol; an owl.

Other coins served as propaganda, disseminating political, religious and military messages, such as a bronze Sestertius (80 CE) minted by the Romans after their victory over Judah, and inscribed “Captured Judaea".

Since the establishment of the State of Israel many coins were modeled after ancient Jewish coins, connecting Israel’s past with its present. The two shekels coin on displayed in the gallery stands next to the Hasmonean coin minted by king John Hyrcanus (129–104 BCE), on which it is based.

Jewish coin minting in Israel, which first began in ancient times, has thus come a full circle.

 Dr. Haim Gitler, Tamar and Teddy Kollek Curator of Numismatics 

,Gold-glass base, Rome, 4th century CE

Glass through the Ages

Glass, a man-made material first produced in the ancient Near East around 2000 BCE by heating sand and salt, remains a symbol of magic and mystery .

The first glass vessels, small and costly perfume and ointment containers, were produced in Mesopotamia and Egypt around 1500 BCE. The pomegranate-shaped bottle shown in the gallery is a good example of one of the earliest glassmaking techniques; it was made from melted raw glass wound around a core of organic material. The same technique was used for the production of glass vessels in the first millennium BCE in the Mediterranean region, while others were made in molds, such as the magnificent translucent blue bowl on display in the gallery.

The early production techniques remained virtually unchanged for 1,500 years, until the revolutionary discovery of the secrets of glass blowing on the eastern shores of the Mediterranean in the mid-1st century BCE. This breakthrough is evident in the jug bearing the Greek inscription “Ennion made it,” referring to the great Sidonian master of the 1st-century CE. This extraordinary piece, which was found in the excavations of Jerusalem’s Jewish Quarter, only barely survived the destruction of the city in 70 CE.

Ancient glass vessels were often decorated with religious symbols. A moving example of this can be seen in a gold-glass base, dating from the 4th century CE, which was used to mark a Jewish grave in the Roman catacombs. Each base is made of two layers of clear glass encasing gold leaf and bears Jewish symbols, such as the Torah Ark and the menorah, the seven-branched candelabra.

Owing to its colorfulness and versatility, glass became one of the primary materials used for such small items, such as jewelry and inlays. The falcon-headed mold-made inlay of the 6th–4th century BCE representing the Egyptian god Horus is a fine example.

The core of our holdings was donated by Eliahu Dobkin, a passionate collector of ancient glass from the Land of Israel and neighboring lands. Over the years, the collection has been enriched by additional gifts and loans, including breathtaking pieces from the collection of Renée and Robert Belfer, New York. The permanent exhibition is completed with important glass finds from local excavations.

 Natasha Katsnelson, Curator of Ancient Glass