Thursday, December 31, 2015

Top Biblical Archaeology Discoveries of 2015

Several lists have been compiled to review the year’s top discoveries in biblical archaeology. We’ll start with the annual compilation by Gordon Govier, published in Christianity Today. Though he initially described them as “top stories” of 2015 rather than “top discoveries,” the magazine has eliminated that distinction. Gordon and I will discuss his top ten list in next week’s edition of The Book and the Spade.

The Biblical Archaeology Society has selected their top ten discoveries of the year, choosing five similar to CT’s list and five others.

Haaretz’s coverage is less of a list and more of a skeptical story, including Ben Carson’s goof and Philistine opium.

If you’re interested in the broader world of archaeology around the globe, Heritage Daily offers its top 10. They include the “Akra” discovery and the gate of Gath in their list.

Erin Brodwin at Business Insider chooses “9 mind-blowing discoveries that had the archaeological community freaking out in 2015.” I wonder if headlines like that really work. She includes only Jesus’s boyhood home from the world of biblical archaeology, but I’m pretty sure the archaeological community in Israel wasn’t freaking out about it.

UPI has 15 photos for 15 discoveries, including the “Arca” (and that’s in quotation marks for more than one reason).

A list by Ancient Origins of the top ten includes a few from Egypt but nothing related to the Bible.
National Geographic identifies “seven major” discoveries of the year, topping the list with the “hidden chambers in Tut’s tomb.” If they actually discover those in the coming months, they can re-use that one again next year.

Nothing from the Middle East makes it onto Archaeology’s Top 10 list.

If I were writing a “top ten” list limited to discoveries made or first announced in 2015, I would include only these four:


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