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Palm trees grown from 2,000-year-old seeds have produced more than a hundred dates, beautiful and tasty. (The father is Methuselah, the mother Hannah.)

A high-tech analysis of 18 ostraca from Arad reveals that they were written by 12 different hands, attesting to a high level of literacy in the kingdom of Judah in the late 7th century BC. The underlying journal article is here.

“A collection of more than 13 intact and sealed coffins has been unearthed in Saqqara, the first step towards a huge discovery to be announced soon on site.”

“The Harvard Museum of the Ancient Near East (HMANE, formerly the Harvard Semitic Museum) has recently started posting 3D scans of its cuneiform collection on-line.”

With the help of some old photos of Qumran Cave 1, Brent Nongbri has identified a couple of unheralded excavators of the Dead Sea Scrolls caves.

“According to the ‘Deal of the Century’ map, hundreds of heritage and archaeology sites in Judea and Samaria are slated to be removed from Israeli control and transferred to the jurisdiction of the proposed Palestinian state.”

The Louvre is helping to restore security for the National Museum of Beirut following extensive damage in the August 4 explosion.

When Adam Henein died this spring, Egypt lost a highly regarded artist whose work included a major restoration of the Sphinx.

People who climb Egyptian antiquities “without a license” will be punished under a new law passed by the government.

Necho II, slayer of King Josiah, is the subject of the latest archaeological biography by Bryan Windle.

Steven Anderson has now finished making playlists for all of Omer Frenkel’s beautiful readings of the Hebrew Bible.

A man was detained when caught hunting gazelles in a park in Jerusalem.

Tim Challies reviews A Harvard Professor, a Con Man, and the Gospel of Jesus and draws implications for all with regard to discoveries that appear to contradict (or confirm) the Christian faith.

Jerusalem University College has announced that Dr. Oliver Hersey will become the next president when Dr. Paul Wright retires in 2021.

Jerusalem recently broke a 139-year-record for the hottest night (with a low of 88.7°F, 31.5°C).

I’ve had a chance to look more carefully at the new Biblical Israel by Air. The thumb drive includes two high-resolution video files (mp4), one narrated and one non-narrated, with 69 minutes of drone footage of beautiful sites including the Sea of Galilee, Joppa, Caesarea, Mount Carmel, Jordan River, Arbel, Capernaum, Dan, Beth Shean, Shiloh, Jericho, Masada, Mount Nebo (on a clear day!), Macherus, Petra, and 40 other sites. This remarkable collection is available at an introductory price of $45 (or $30 for the DVD).

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Keith Keyser, Wayne Stiles, Explorator

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A trove of Phoenician artifacts was long ascribed to a single shipwreck. More likely they were tossed overboard [as votive offerings], and over centuries [7th-3rd c BC], a new study suggests.”

A wildfire recently threatened the Bronze Age site of Mycenae in Greece.

Annie Attia writes about what we know about epidemics in ancient Mesopotamia.

A team of researchers is using new technology to discover erased texts in the library of St. Catherine’s Monastery.

Some scholars are ridiculing Yosef Garfinkel’s theory that an anthropomorphic clay head from Khirbet Qeiyafa depicts the face of God.

Foy Scalf will be lecturing on Tuesday, Sept 8, on “Measuring Time: The Ancient Egyptian Invention of the Clock,” using artifacts from the University of Chicago’s Oriental Institute Museum.

New: A Classical Archaeologist’s Life: The Story so Far: An Autobiography, by John Boardman

The full-length production of “Caesarea by the Sea: Rome’s Capital in Israel” has just been released. As you may recall from the trailers, the video features 3D digital models of King Herod’s city. You can watch the 20-minute documentary for free at the Bible Land Passages website as well as on YouTube.

HT: Agade, Ted Weis, Joseph Lauer

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An archaeological survey team “has located an extensive series of mysterious openings cut high in a cliff inside the sacred valley south of the royal cemetery of Umm Al-Qaab.”

“Three mummified animals from ancient Egypt have been digitally unwrapped and dissected by researchers using high-resolution 3D scans.”

Smithsonian Magazine: “In the Land of Kush” provides an impressive tour of an area many of us will probably never be able to visit.

“Gold seekers have destroyed a 2,000-year-old historical site deep in the deserts of Sudan, according to officials.” Their use of heavy equipment destroyed all signs of the ancient site.

Mark Wilson reports on his recent visit to Pella in Jordan.

“The Defense Ministry has released some of the first photographs taken by Israel’s newest spy satellite, showing ancient ruins in the central Syrian city of Palmyra.”

A new video produced by the Metropolitan Museum of Art looks how how peoples of the ancient Near East responded to various adversities.

The University of Central Florida has compiled a list of Open Educational Resources for the Ancient Near East.

The 23rd Annual Bible and Archaeologist Fest will be a 2-day online seminar this year with many interesting speakers.

HT: Agade, Ted Weis, Joseph Lauer

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An outdoor archaeological exhibit has been created near the beachfront of Ashkelon. There is a brief video showing the displayed artifacts here.

Ken Dark reviews the evidence for the inhabitation of Nazareth in the first century.

A company in the Golan Heights is raising locusts to help meet the world’s need for animal protein.

King Uzziah: An Archaeological Biography looks at matters of historicity, his expansion, and the earthquake in his reign.

Ferrell Jenkins asks how Bet Guvrin would look during a pandemic.

A creative agency has teamed with architects to digitally reconstruct 5 endangered World Heritage sites, including Jerusalem’s Temple Mount and Palmyra.

CoinWeek has a feature on the coins of Herod the Great.

John DeLancey has released a new video entitled “Visiting Ein Gedi.”

Some statues and reliefs were discovered in a salvage excavation near Mit-Rahina in Egypt.

This piece has a bit about Egypt’s relationship with gold as well as Zahi Hawass’s relationship with Tutankhamun.

A 2nd-century AD sarcophagus with a gold diadem was discovered in Izmir (biblical Smyrna) in a rescue dig.

The British Museum is looking for help in identifying various artifacts.

Westminster Books has a sale on books from Lexham Press, including Lexham Geographic Commentary on the Gospels and Lexham Geographic Commentary on Acts through Revelation ($24 ea.), both with contributions from the BiblePlaces team members.

Featured in ANE Today (but noted last year on this blog): “In Discovering New Pasts: The OI [Oriental Institute] at 100, 62 people, almost all faculty, staff, and volunteers, tell the story of the OI, past and present, and of their involvement with the Institute.” The book is available for purchase or free download here.

Recently reprinted:
Pioneer to the Past:
The Story of James Henry Breasted
, Archaeologist. $30 in print or free download.

HT: Agade, Charles Savelle, Explorator

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CT scans on a couple of Egyptian mummies at the University of Haifa revealed non-human remains.

“Egypt’s tourism and antiquities ministry has issued new regulations and precautionary measures for archaeological missions to resume excavations.”

A study of what Romans called “Alexandrian glass” reveals that this treasured material did in fact come from Egypt.

The Egyptian Museum at the University of Leipzig is hosting a special exhibit on Heliopolis.

Jesse Millik questions some traditional views about the end of the Late Bronze Age in the Levant.

“After years of trial and error – and after getting used to the foul stench – Mohamed Ghassen Nouira has cracked how to make the prized purple dye used for royal and imperial robes in ancient times.”

Excavation and conservation work continues at the Ayanis Castle in Turkey, one of the most impressive structures of the kingdom of Urartu.

The discovery of a temple at Epidaurus in Greece suggests that worship of Asclepius began earlier than believed.

Carl Rasmussen shares photos of Samothrace, a Greek island that Paul visited but most tourists don’t.

Archaeologists and engineers are developing new technologies to protect Baiae, a Roman settlement now under the waters of the Mediterranean Sea.

There was more than one way to wipe in the ancient Roman empire.

New from Eisenbrauns: New Directions in the Study of Ancient Geography, edited by Duane W. Roller. Save 40% with code NR18.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Alexander Schick

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Fabricus is a new “Google Arts & Culture Lab Experiment that uses machine learning to help translate ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs.”

New release: “a public, open platform for the Digital Library of the Middle East (DLME), which . . . aggregates, through an ongoing program, digital records of published materials, documents, maps, artifacts, audiovisual recordings, and more from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.”

From Meretseger Books: Digitized Treasures – 100 rare books now fully online and Pictures of Egypt – 15,000 photos of most sites in Egypt available for free use.

The auction of this selection from the Schoyen Collection is over, but the catalog of items providing a “history of Western script” may still be of interest.

Fifty titles from Brown Judaic Studies have been released in open access format.

The festschrift for James Hoffmeier, previously described on this blog here, is now available at 40% off with code NR18.

New: Studies in Literacy and Textualization in the Ancient Near East and in the Hebrew Scriptures: Essays in Honour of Professor Alan R. Millard, edited by Daniel I. Block, David C. Deuel, C. John Collins, Paul J. N. Lawrence (Pickwick, $49).

Eric Cline will be the first speaker in the Friends of ASOR’s new webinar series. The topic is “Digging Deeper: How Archaeology Works,” and it will be held on August 9 at 8 pm Eastern. Registration and payment is required.

The Annual Meetings of the Evangelical Theological Society and the Society of Biblical Literature will be conducted virtually.

The International Virtual Conference on the Archaeology of Iran and Adjacent Regions will be held from July 20-21.

Alex Joffe looks at the possibility of pickles and pickling in the ancient Near East.

Though ancient temples were called “houses,” they did not look like houses.

The Louvre reopened, and the Vatican Museums are empty.

The Assyrian king Sennacherib is a great subject for the latest archaeological profile by Bryan Windle.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Alexander Schick, Ted Weis, Explorator

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