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The ancient Israelites referred to the place of child sacrifice as the “Tophet,” which is the term modern scholars now generally use for the known places of ancient Semitic child sacrifice. Archaeological work at Carthage has uncovered the largest tophet known to exist. The vast area at one time contained more than 20,000 urns of infant and animal bones, all of which had been cremated. <ref> Clifford, p. 58</ref> Some scholars have been skeptical that all of the urns represent sacrifice victims, but the context seems clear to most and other, similar tophets have been uncovered in other Phoenician cities of the same period at Hadrumentum, Sicily, and Sardinia. <ref> Rundin, p. 425</ref> Therefore, the archaeological evidence at Carthage corroborates the classical references of child sacrifice and the earlier historical precedents established by the Carthaginians’ Semitic ancestors.
The ancient world is full of many seeming contradictions to modern sensibilities. Some of the most civilized people of the ancient world had no problems carrying out genocidal military campaigns, regularly practiced slavery, and perhaps most difficult for people today to understand, even performed child sacrifice rituals. The ancient Greek and Roman historians claimed that the Carthaginians performed these rituals regularly and by all accounts they were truthful. When one examines the Carthaginians’ ancestors’ religious practices in the Levant along with the archaeological evidence of the Carthage Tophet, then it is clear that Diodorus’ account of widespread child sacrifice in Carthage was factual.