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Archaeologists in Egypt have found proof that they are excavating a rare ancient sun temple, the third ever found and the first to be uncovered in 50 years.”

After a ten-year closure, Egypt has begun plans to restore the Aswan Museum on Elephantine Island.

Saudi Arabia has opened the Nabatean site of Hegra to foreign tourists for the first time ever. This detailed article about Petra’s little sister includes many beautiful photos.

Four known Mycenaean corbel arch bridges in the vicinity of Mycenae and Arkadiko villages in Greece are considered to be some of the world’s oldest bridges. Two of them are still in operation and have been so for at least 3,000 years.”

Lina Zeldovich has written the best article I’ve ever read on bathroom practices of ancient Romans.

Now online: “Propaganda, Power, and Perversion of Biblical Truths: Coins Illustrating the Book of Revelation,” by Gordon Franz

It is interesting to see the Tehran Times run a story about Susa without ignoring its role biblical history. (The Bible is effectively outlawed in Iran, and all websites related to the Bible, including this one, cannot be accessed.)

The Biblical Archaeology Society has announced its 2021 Publication Awards Winners.

“Holly Beers and David deSilva discuss life in the first century with Biblical World host Lynn Cohick. Holly and David both wrote novels that explore life on the ground in Ephesus, giving readers a unique opportunity to experience Paul’s world in a very personal way.”

HT: Agade, Ted Weis, Arne Halbakken, Keith Keyser, Andy Cook

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“Archeologists have uncovered a 3,500-year-old mosaic in central Turkey that could be one of the oldest in the world.”

Life-size camel sculptures discovered in Saudi Arabia are now believed to date not to the Roman period but to the Neolithic.

The best preserved shipwreck in the Adriatic Sea dates to the 2nd century BC and was discovered at a depth of only 8 feet.

Archaeologists are planning to excavate a Hittite temple in Kayalıpınar in Central Turkey.

“An ambitious effort to revive Izmir’s Jewish heritage is paying off as the Turkish city vies for a place on the UNESCO heritage list.”

The Times of Israel tells the story of two Israeli engineers who traveled to Iraq to restore the ancient tomb of the prophet Nahum.

Researchers are hoping that AI will one day speed up the translation of Egyptian hieroglyphs.

AramcoWorld has a well-illustrated feature story on Mohammedani Ibrahim, one of the first Egyptian archaeological photographers.

The Berlin State Museums have a new searchable blog page, “Museum and the City,” which includes blog posts on the ancient collections.

After a long COVID-enforced sabbatical, some tour groups are returning to the Middle East. John DeLancey has been posting daily summaries and photos of his Greece-Turkey-Italy tour, now through Day 13.

New release: The Story of the Apostle Paul, by J. Carl Laney

HT: Agade, Charles Savelle, Joseph Lauer, Arne Halbakken, Explorator

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Weekend Sale: Photo Companion to the Bible: 1 Samuel – only $49 with coupon SAMUEL

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“Researchers in Saudi Arabia have discovered a sixth-century B.C.E. rock carving of the last Babylonian king, Nabonidus” along with a lengthy cuneiform inscription.

“Beneath the murky waves of the Venice Lagoon, researchers have discovered the remains of an ancient Roman road and other possible port facilities, like a dock, that may predate the founding of the Italian city.”

“A spectacular ancient mosaic floor that was part of a building from the Hellenistic period is among the important finds from excavations carried out recently at Fabrika Hill in Kato Paphos, Cyprus.” The photo is apparently not of the newly discovered mosaic.

NPR has a story on what lies below ground in Istanbul.

“Work has begun to refurbish the old Acropolis Museum near the iconic Parthenon temple and turn it into an exhibition space.”

“Held annually on [Turkey’s] Aegean coast, the Selcuk camel-wrestling festival is part of a nomadic legacy rooted in ancient Turkic tribes.”

“Between the years 193 – 235, the Roman Empire was ruled by a series of emperors who were originally Phoenicians.”

The new director of Michigan State University’s excavations at Isthmia has developed a new website to share both old and new research with the public. The website is here.

The US government has seized the Museum of the Bible’s Gilgamesh Tablet, declaring that it was illegally deported from Iraq.

Death by stoning is not so common these days, especially in the United States. But that’s how a gunman in Texas recently died.

Zoom lecture on August 29: “From Standing Stones to Sacred Emptiness: Textual and Visual Portrayals of Israel’s God,” by Theodore Lewis.

University College London and King’s College London are co-hosting an eLecture series in August, entitled Ancient Near Eastern Languages in Contact (ANELC). The first eLecture will take place on Wednesday 4 August from 16:00 until 17:00 BST (London), when Dr. Ohad Cohen of the University of Haifa will be speaking on “The Canaanite Melting Pot – The Theoretical Implications of ‘Languages in Contact’ to the Understanding of Late Biblical Hebrew.”

New release: The City of Babylon: A History, c. 2000 BC – AD 116, by Stephanie Dalley

HT: Agade, Arne Halbakken, Wayne Stiles, Joseph Lauer, Ted Weis, Explorator, Mark Hoffman, Roger Schmidgall, Paleojudaica

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“Archaeologists believe that a 2,300-year-old jar from Ancient Greece containing the bones of a dismembered chicken was likely used as part of a curse to paralyze and kill 55 people in Athens.”

“A multinational team of archaeologists and scientists is reassessing the history of sea-level change in the Eastern Mediterranean based on underwater excavation and photogrammetry at sites on Israel’s Carmel coast.”

“An Egyptian archaeological mission is preparing to launch an excavation project in Saudi Arabia after several discoveries showed that ancient Egyptian King Ramses III had a presence in the Arabian Peninsula.”

Turkish Archaeological News has a roundup of stories from the month of May.

“The Covid-19 pandemic, however, has offered these thieves new opportunities to raid closed archeological sites, churches and museums [in Italy] for priceless artifacts while police are reassigned to enforce lockdowns.”

First discovered in 2015, a cache of Roman coins dating from 200 BCE to 27 BCE are now on display at the Santa Maria della Scala Museum in Siena, Italy.

A replica of Noah’s Ark has been deemed unseaworthy and is prohibited from leaving port.

Charles Aling is on The Book and the Spade discussing “Post-Exodus Disruptions in Egypt.”

Carl Rasmussen shares photos from “The Grotto of Paul” at Ephesus, including ancient paintings of Paul and Thecla.

If you’ll be at the Infusion Bible Conference this week, stop by the BiblePlaces table and say hi to Kris Udd and me. I haven’t had a chance to meet many roundup readers this past year, but our team has used the time to create some great new photo collections.

HT: Agade, Arne Halbakken, Ted Weis, Explorator, Charles Savelle, Paleojudaica

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Joshua Berman and Ari Zivotofsky reject the recent study that ancient Judeans ate non-kosher fish because they had no knowledge of the Torah.

About 250 rock-cut tombs from the Old Kingdom to the Ptolemaic period have been discovered in Egypt’s Eastern Desert.

“Saudi Arabia is seeking Greek expertise in archaeological excavation for its nascent cultural sector.”

Sinkholes are a growing problem in Rome due to ancient and medieval tunnels.

The curatorial team behind the Epic Iran exhibition give an overview of the show ahead of its opening.

In the latest episode of the Biblical World podcast, Mary Buck and Chris McKinny discuss Ugarit and possible connections to the Old Testament.

Ariel M. Bagg reviews the history of Neo-Assyrian historical geography, leading up to the recent publication of the final volumes of the Répertoire Géographique des Textes Cunéiformes (Geographical Register of Cuneiform Texts).

Returning to his series on the seven churches, Ferrell Jenkins focuses on the church at Sardis, with a number of beautiful photos.

Bryan Windle’s top three archaeological reports of the month all come from the New Testament era.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Arne Halbakken, Charles Savelle, Ted Weis

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“A team of archaeologists in north-west the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has uncovered the earliest evidence of dog domestication by the region’s ancient inhabitants.”

“Italian art police recovered a 1st century Roman statue that had been looted from an archaeological site nearly a decade ago after off-duty officers spotted it in an antique shop in Belgium.”

Rebekah Welton looks at excessive and deviant consumption in the Bible, particularly with reference to the rebellious son in Deuteronomy 21.

Now online: “Learning historical geography and archaeology in Israel with Chris McKinny, Part 4.”

Webinar on April 18: “Will the Real Bar Kochba Please Stand Up,” with Isaiah Gafni.

Webinar on April 21: “The Queens of Ancient Nimrud,” with Amy Gansell and Helen Malko.

Webinar on April 29: “Pandemics in Antiquity and Beyond,” with Kyle Harper, Calloway Brewster Scott, and Hunter Gardener.

Virtual workshop on May 4: “Listening To and Learning From Children in the Biblical World,” hosted by the Albright Institute.

NYU Skirball Department of Hebrew and Judaic Studies is sponsoring a 4-day virtual conference, “The Dead Sea Scrolls: A Second Public Conference” on June 6-9.

New book: Jerusalem II: Jerusalem in Roman-Byzantine Times, edited by Katharina Heyden and Maria Lissek, published by Mohr Siebeck, €154.

HT: Agade, Keith Keyser, Alexander Schick, Arne Halbakken, Charles Savelle

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About the BiblePlaces Blog

The BiblePlaces Blog provides updates and analysis of the latest in biblical archaeology, history, and geography. Unless otherwise noted, the posts are written by Todd Bolen, PhD, Professor of Biblical Studies at The Master’s University.

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