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A 12-minute video on the discovery of the Isaiah seal impression describes the background and significance of this find. The video includes interviews with Eilat Mazar and Shmuel Ahituv.

Christopher Rollston issues some cautions about identifying that seal impression with the prophet Isaiah. He follows up with more here. Michael Welch goes further and says that the seal belongs to
Isaiah (son of) Nobai or Isaiah the Nobian and not the famous prophet.

Biblical Archaeology Review is honoring its founder Hershel Shanks with a double issue, the table of contents of which is now online.

Mark D. Smith investigates the probability of a body of an criminal executed by Rome being buried.

Wayne Stiles considers the purpose of Jesus’s transfiguration and its significance to us today.

Ferrell Jenkins recalls his own experiences in visiting the Jordan River near Jericho.

How was Jesus heard without a microphone? That’s the topic on this week’s The Land and the Book broadcast with Barry Britnell.

Sharon Herbert will be lecturing at the Albright Institute on March 1  on “New Work on the Sealings and the Archive from Tel Kedesh.”

Now’s a good time to sign up for the summer excavations at Tell es-Safi/Gath.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Ted Weis

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A team has been excavating the so-called “Cave 12” at Qumran and a statement of their latest work will be released soon.

One of the last unpublished Dead Sea Scrolls has been deciphered using high-tech imagery to put together a puzzle of 60 tiny scroll fragments.

The Times of Israel has more on the depiction of the birth of Athena on the potsherd from et-Tell.

Moshe Gilad, in a lengthy and well-illustrated article at Haaretz, asks why Qasr el-Yahud, the traditional place of Jesus’s baptism, is still mined and booby-trapped seven years after the site opened to tourists.

A conference on the Archaeology of the Dead Sea Region will be held next month at the State Museum of Archaeology Chemnitz in preparation for an exhibition on “Life at the Dead Sea” in the fall of 2019.

In a journal article for NEASB, Brian Peterson considers whether a ram’s head discovered at Khirbet el-Maqatir provides evidence for the Israelite conquest of Ai.

New images of mosaics discovered at the Huqoq synagogue will be displayed for the first time in a lecture at the University of Chester in the UK.

Carl Rasmussen shares photos of reliefs that illustrate the “dogs eating the crumbs” that fall from the table.

Leen Ritmeyer discusses the importance of the Trumpeting Stone discovered below the Temple
Mount and shares some photos from its original discovery.

Wayne Stiles explains why the Lord took his people to Mount Sinai before the Promised Land.

Kenneth Seeskin explains why the Hebrew Bible is so easy/difficult to interpret.

The Caspari Center is running a course on “Discovering Jesus in His Jewish Context” in April and May of this year.

Les and Kathy Bruce of Biblical Byways are leading a tour to Turkey and Greece in May and June.

Elisha Qimron has been awarded the Israel Prize for his work on the Dead Sea Scrolls.

The ESV Archaeology Study Bible is coming in March, and you can read about the editors and their approach.

Appian Media has released a trailer for their next big project: Searching for a King. Filming will begin this summer.

HT: Joseph Lauer, Agade, Charles Savelle

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Underwater excavations of Corinth’s harbor at the port of Lechaion have exposed five-ton stone blocks and a perfectly preserved wooden post. This article has lots of illustrations. A 2-minute video takes you there.


The New York Times reports on the numerous ancient finds from Rome’s ongoing subway project.

Archaeologists have been excavating a large Byzantine church complex near Beth Shemesh.

Excavations have revealed that the population of Shiloh switched from Gentile to Jewish following the Maccabean Revolt.

New excavations have revealed a Hasmonean-era settlement at Susiya near Hebron.

Israel’s Culture Minister is initiating a $70 million plan to uncover, preserve, and develop historical sites in Jerusalem and vicinity.

The Israeli government has approved funding for a hiking trail through the West Bank and Golan Heights.

“The ancient city of Hazor in the Galilee seems to have muscled its way to fame and fortune partly by developing a unique business in farming sheep, instead of goats like everyone else in Canaan 3,700 years ago.”

Recent excavations at Jericho show a close relationship between the city and Egypt.

Archaeologists have traced the history of a menorah relief in various buildings in Tiberias.

A young girl discovered a Hasmonean-period oil lamp in a porcupines’ den near Beth Shean.

Elsewhere antiquities thieves denied their activities by claiming that they were “just hunting porcupines.”

New book, with free ebook download: Finding Jerusalem: Archaeology between Science and Ideology, by Katharina Galor.

Cuneiform cookies are all the rage this Christmas. This video will teach you how to bake Ugaritic
Tablet Biscuits.

HT: Ted Weis, Joseph Lauer, Agade, Mark Hoffman, Charles Savelle, Explorator, Chris McKinny,
Mike Harney

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Jodi Magness keeps digging up cool mosaics in the Late Roman synagogue at Huqoq. (Unfortunately, they seem to have released only two photos.)

A manuscript with a medical recipe from Hippocrates has been discovered in restoration works of the library of St. Catherine’s Monastery in Sinai.

The first week of excavations has concluded at Gath, and Aren Maeir has posted a daily summaries and photos from the week.

Chris McKinny has posted a summary of Week 1 at Tel Burna.

The first aquarium in Jerusalem will open later this month next to the Biblical Zoo.

A study of ancient sea walls has found that the Romans used a volcanic ash in construction because it was strengthened by its contact with sea water.

“Iraq’s Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities has accelerated its efforts to finish by the end of 2018 the Virtual Museum of Iraq, which will create a comprehensive database of Iraqi archaeological heritage online.”

Hobby Lobby will pay a fine and return artifacts to settle a lawsuit brought by the US government.


The Federalist argues that the US government should allow Hobby Lobby to retain the artifacts because doing so will ensure their preservation and study.

John DeLancey has posted an 11-minute video showing a hike up Mount Arbel. He has several dozen teaching videos on his website here.

The Bible and Interpretation has posted a review article by Aren M. Wilson-Wright, “Hebrew or
Not?: Reviewing the Linguistic Claims of Douglas Petrovich’s The World’s Oldest Alphabet.”

Lawrence Schiffman writes about a recent conference of Jewish, Christian, and Muslim scholars on the history and archaeology of the Temple Mount.

Wayne Stiles: “Have you noticed how often hymn writers use the Jordan River as a metaphor for transitions in the spiritual life? That may be because the Bible does the same.”

Ferrell Jenkins asks, “Did Philip baptize the Ethiopian at ’Ain ed-Dirweh?”

Scott Stripling is the guest this week on The Book and the Spade, discussing the first season of ABR excavations at Shiloh.

Tom Powers investigates celebrations of the 4th of July held by the American Colony in Jerusalem.

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

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A new McDonalds in Italy incorporates a 150-foot section of Roman road that dates to the 1st or 2nd centuries BC.

Film footage from excavations of Nineveh in the late 1920s and early 1930s has been digitized by the Royal Asiatic Society.

Carl Rasmussen asks if the house of Jesus has been found in Nazareth.

Shmuel Browns provides the history of Naharayim and its short-lived hydroelectric plant. Naharayim gets its name from the junction of two rivers: the Jordan and the Yarmuk.

Israel’s Good Name took a walking tour of the abandoned village of Lifta and shares many photos.

John DeLancey, director of Biblical Israel Ministries & Tours, is now offering a “Physical Settings of the Bible” weekend seminar for local churches.

Aren Maeir has posted the schedule for this week’s conference at Tel Aviv University entitled, “From
Nomadism to Monarchy? ‘The Archaeology of the Settlement Period’—30 Years Later.”

The director of the Met has apparently been forced to resign.

ASOR’s March Fellowship Madness is underway and they are only $5,300 short of their $50,000
goal.

The Associates for Biblical Research have a $10,000 matching gift for the Shiloh Excavations for donations made this month.

We post a photo and verse/caption every weekday on Facebook, Twitter, and now Instagram. If you’re on any of those, we invite you to follow us.

HT: Explorator, Joseph Lauer, Agade

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“For the first time in centuries, scientists have exposed the original surface of what Christians traditionally believe to be Jesus’s tomb in Jerusalem’s Church of the Holy Sepulchre, as part of a restoration project.” National Geographic has a video and photos. Justin Taylor interviews Leen Ritmeyer about the specifics of Jesus’s tomb as known from the biblical record and archaeology. The first-ever artifacts discovered in situ from the time of the First Temple have been unveiled in Jerusalem. Haaretz’s story includes a photo of a structure that was revealed. The protective cover of an enormous mosaic in Hisham’s palace in Jericho was removed for a day in advance of the construction of a protective roof. Excavations have begun in the Umayyad palace at Khirbat Al-Minya on the northwestern shore of the Sea of Galilee. Ancient tombs were discovered north of the Old City of Jerusalem during recent road maintenance. Aren Maeir suspects that the Jerusalem Papyrus may be fake. An ancient Muslim inscription indicates that the original name of the Dome of the Rock was the “House of the Temple.” The TMSP blog comments on some of the reports at this week’s conference on the Archaeology of Jerusalem, including notice of a new study that the spring house over the Gihon in the City of David dates not to the Middle Bronze Age but to the 9th century BC. The Mount of Olives cemetery was ranked #8 on Bloomberg’s list of most beautiful burial sites in the world. HT: Joseph Lauer, Steven Anderson, Agade, Charles Savelle, Ted Weis, Paleojudaica

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