Saturday, March 17, 2018

Weekend Roundup

The Column of King Merneptah has been transferred to the Grand Egyptian Museum.

Popular Archaeology investigates the discovery of three skeletons at Gezer last summer.

Researchers at Bowdoin College Museum of Art are working to reconstruct the color on ancient Assyrian reliefs.

The luxurious Roman silver Berthouville Treasure collection is now on display in Denmark.

James Mellaart, former excavator of Catalhoyuk, is accused of having forged murals and inscriptions that he claimed to have discovered.

Was the synagogue of Capernaum in Jesus’s day white or black? Leen Ritmeyer explains why it was black.

As Easter approaches, Carl Rasmussen shares related photos, including one of a “crown of thorns.”

Gary Rendsburg gives a tour of the world’s oldest Torah scrolls.

Wayne Stiles looks at Abraham’s visit with Melchizedek in Salem.

The latest from Walking the Text is “Returning to the Path.”

This week’s program on The Book and the Spade addresses the tomb of Jonah and archaeological destruction.

For years I’ve used a helpful OT chronological chart with my students. Now Kris Udd is making it available to the public (via Academia).

HT: Ted Weis, Agade

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Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Undisturbed Canaanite Tomb Discovered at Megiddo

National Geographic announces a major find from Megiddo dating to the 17th century BC. Undisturbed tombs are all too rare in professional excavations.

The extraordinary discovery of a magnificent and untouched 3,600-year-old burial chamber in the ancient Canaanite city-state of Megiddo has stunned archaeologists, not only for the array of wealth found in the tomb, but also for the potential insight it may provide into the royal dynasty that ruled this powerful center before its conquest by Egypt in the early 15th century B.C.


The surprise find began as something of a mystery, when archaeologists began to notice cracks in the surface of an excavation area adjacent to the Bronze Age palaces which were discovered in the 1930s. Dirt appeared to be falling away into some unseen cavity or structure below, Adams recalls. Then, in 2016, they happened upon the culprit: a subterranean corridor leading to a burial chamber.

The chamber contained the undisturbed remains of three individuals—a child between the ages of eight and 10, a woman in her mid 30s and a man aged between 40-60—adorned with gold and silver jewelry including rings, brooches, bracelets, and pins. The male body was discovered wearing a gold necklace and had been crowned with a gold diadem, and all of the objects demonstrate a high level of skill and artistry.

Apart from the rich, undisturbed burials, the archaeologists were also intrigued by the tomb’s location adjacent to the late Middle Bronze Age royal palace of Megiddo.

“We are speaking of an elite family burial because of the monumentality of the structure, the rich finds and because of the fact that the burial is located in close proximity to the royal palace,” Finkelstein explains.

The grave goods point to the cosmopolitan nature of Megiddo at the time and the treasures it reaped from its location on the major trade routes of the eastern Mediterranean. Along with jewelry, the tomb contained ceramic vessels from Cyprus and stone jars that may have been imported from Egypt.

National Geographic has more details, including the report of a DNA study being done at Megiddo.

HT: Joseph Lauer

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Saturday, March 10, 2018

Weekend Roundup

Rome's ongoing subway system project has uncovered several glimpses of the past, this time the ruins of a Roman military commander's 14-room luxury villa.

ASOR Cultural Heritage Initiatives has a report on the current status of the Ain Dara Temple.

Authorities caught tomb raiders in Galilee as they used a bulldozer to loot graves from the Roman period.

3D computational geometry is being used in a long-distance virtual reconstruction to piece together ancient cuneiform texts.

Christopher Rollston is on the OnScript Podcast speaking about the Isaiah seal impression.

The Digital Archive for the Study of pre-Islamic Arabian Inscriptions “seeks to gather all known pre-Islamic Arabian epigraphic material into a comprehensive online database, with the aim to make available to specialists and to the broader public a wide array of documents often underestimated because of their difficulty of access.”

A proposed restructuring at University College London may have adverse effects on the Petrie Museum. You can learn how to help here.

Bible Gateway has published an interview with Lois Tverberg about her new book, Reading the Bible with Rabbi Jesus.

On sale for Kindle: Provan, Long, and Longman, A Biblical History of Israel ($3.99).

Accordance has a big sale going on now on atlases and related resources. The Satellite Bible Atlas is now available on Accordance, and it too is on sale (40% off) until March 12.

BAS is offering subscriptions to its video lecture service for 75% off for a limited time.

David Z. Moster’s latest video explains how to use the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia.

Wayne Stiles shares some new video footage shot over biblical Joppa.

The LMLK Blogspot links to a new video of aerial footage of Hebron.

HT: Ted Weis, Agade, Charles Savelle, Mark Hoffman

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Sunday, March 04, 2018

Weekend Roundup, Part 2

A headless statue of Aphrodite and a large mosaic were discovered during subway construction in Thessaloniki.

“Researchers have discovered the oldest figurative tattoos in the world on the upper arms of two ancient Egyptian mummies, the British Museum said.”

Iraqi authorities discovered 75 artifacts near the Shrine of the Prophet Abraham after a torrential rain.

Egypt's Ministry of Antiquities Newsletter for January 2018 has been published.

Rome was covered by a rare snowfall this week. Photos here.

The Frist Center in Nashville is hosting over 200 objects from the Roman Empire, courtesy of the British Museum.

Four Persian kings are buried in the necropolis of Naqsh-e Rustam, including Darius I.

A rare 2nd-3rd century AD Roman ivory relief of Greek mythology is for sale.

A Hungarian pilot has flown his stunt plane through the Corinth Canal.

Wayne Stiles explains how your mind is like an archaeological dig.

HT: Agade, Charles Savelle, Joseph Lauer, Ted Weis, Paul Mitchell, Mark Hoffman

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Saturday, March 03, 2018

Weekend Roundup, Part 1

Adi Erlich reports the results from the renewed excavations of the Beth Shearim that she directed.

The closing of the Megiddo Prison will (finally) permit the opening of an archaeological park that features an early place of Christian worship.

“A rare, intact bronze ring from the Middle Ages bearing the image of St. Nicholas was discovered by chance during recent landscaping work in the garden of a home in the Jezreel Valley community of Moshav Yogev.”

The shrinking Dead Sea is attracting some strange people.

Photographs from the 1952 Qumran Caves’ Expedition are now online.

Israel’s Good Name explored some places in Jerusalem that many tourists never see.

On Purim 89 years ago the Graf Zeppelin flew over Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.

The entire double issue of Biblical Archaeology Review that celebrates Hershel Shanks is currently available in its entirety to all.

Accordance Bible Software is offering a large Lifeboat Switcher discount if you come over from any other Bible software platform.

HT: Agade, Charles Savelle, Joseph Lauer, Ted Weis, Mark Hoffman

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