"Mary's Well waters down to a trickle" (Times Picayune)
NAZARETH, GALILEE -- After a bumper season of winter rains, the streams and rivers of Galilee are brimming with water for the first time in a decade. But there is one sacred and mysterious Galilee water source, Mary's Well in Nazareth, whose waters are a mere trickle of what they were in Jesus' time.
Nazareth is the Galilee town where Jesus grew to manhood, and the place from which he set out across the nearby hills and valleys in his brief but revolutionary ministry. Mary's Well marks the site in Nazareth where Orthodox Christians believe the Angel Gabriel announced the birth of Jesus. And it is undoubtedly a place Jesus often visited with his mother in his childhood.
This is a Christian pilgrimage site, but it seems there is some archaeological evidence that the pool does go back to the Roman era:
Yardena Alexandre, an archaeologist with the Israel Antiquities Authority, supervised two seasons of excavations at the site, undertaken during the renovations.
"We found remains from the Mameluke, Crusader and Roman period," she said. "The Roman finds were very minimal, remains of a few wall stubs and the remains of an ancient water channel. But from the Crusader period, there was an impressive structure, a well house built over the water cistern. Among the finds were hundreds of broken glass bracelets and hundreds of coins, which were most likely thrown into the well house by pilgrims and visitors. The coins indicate a presence at the well house from the Roman, Crusader, Mameluke and Ottoman period."