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An ancient stone weight dug up in Jerusalem has been found to be far heavier than the amount written on its surface, leading archaeologists to assume it was used to cheat in trading.” The discovery was presented at a conference in Jerusalem on Thursday (video in Hebrew here).

A report has recently been published on the overt and covert involvement of Israelis in archaeological research in the West Bank between 1948 and 1967.

Work has begun to renovate the bridge leading from the Western Wall plaza to the Temple Mount.

A new app allows visitors to explore the archaeological remains of the Church of the Glorious Martyr recently excavated near Beth Shemesh. The latest issue of BAR has more information about the church, and Owen Jarus provides a summary.

Archaeologists working in Saqqara used ancient Egyptian technology to raise a sarcophagus to the surface (3-min video).

Archaeologists announced the discovery of a settlement in Alexandria dating back to the 2nd century BC, including a sculpture of Alexander the Great.

“One of the most important religious centers of the ancient world, the city of Akhmim in southern Egypt is presented in the exhibit Akhmim: Egypt’s Forgotten City, currently on display in the James Simon Gallery of the Berlin State Museums.”

The “wine of Lebanon” mentioned by the prophet Hosea was famous in antiquity. An article in The Ancient Near East Today describes some new archaeological evidence for the production of Phoenician wine.

The skull of a woman who underwent the world’s first brain surgery will be reconstructed using a beeswax technique.

Norwegian authorities “confiscated approximately 100 antiquities from the extensive collection of Martin Schøyen which Iraqi authorities believe were illicitly removed from their country.”

On Sept. 19, Yosef Garfinkel will be speaking in the next Friends of ASOR webinar on the topic of “David, Solomon, and Rehoboam’s Kingdom—The Archaeological Evidence.”

On Dec 1, Andrea Berlin will be speaking in the BAS Scholars Series on “The Rise of the Maccabees:What Archaeology Reveals About Antiquity’s Last Independent Jewish Kingdom.”

This week’s program on The Book and the Spade: Ashkelon basilica, Sussita theater, missing walls, with Clyde Billington.

Lois Tverberg takes a Hebraic look at the gospel and its surprising bearers.

“For the Jewish New Year, Joan Nathan composes a dish that pays tribute to foods that the biblical Canaanites might have eaten.”

HT: Joseph Lauer, Agade, Arne Halbakken, Ted Weis, Alexander Schick

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A BBC Travel special reveals the scientific explanation to the deadly gases of the Ploutonion at Hierapolis. The story includes beautiful photos.

Excavations are underway at Claros, site of an ancient oracle in western Turkey.

After several years of restoration, the warren of corridors beneath the Colosseum floor has been opened to the public.

My Modern Met tells the story of a massive scale model of Rome that took about 35 years to build. Unfortunately, the Museum of Roman Civilization where it is housed has been closed for many years.

Caroline Wazer summarizes a recent study about slave collars in ancient Rome.

Brent Nongbri has written a guide to bookshops in Rome in the first century.

Greece has announced plans for five new or upgraded museums in Chios, Trikala, Sparta, Thyrreio and Ermioni.

A registry of all archaeological sites in Greece is now available online.

“Russia has begun a project to rehabilitate Syria’s ancient city of Palmyra in its latest efforts to gain a foothold in the country’s vital sectors.”

A CNN video documents the restoration of antiquities destroyed in the Beirut port blast.

“Egyptian police on Thursday arrested a former lawmaker and 17 other suspects on charges of illegal excavation and smuggling of 201 Pharaonic, Greek and Roman artifacts.”

Two people died while illegally excavating near the Giza pyramids.

Episode 1 of Ancient Lives on the Nile premieres on YouTube on July 9 at 5:00 pm Eastern.

Michele Cammarosano and Katja Weirauch explain the value and use of wax boards in the ancient Near East.

“The Painters of Pompeii” is an exhibit of 80 artifacts and artworks shown exclusively by the Oklahoma City Museum of Art from June 26 to October 17.

I found Bryan Windle’s interview of Mark Wilson to be very interesting and helpful.

HT: Agade, Ted Weis, Joseph Lauer, Arne Halbakken, Ferrell Jenkins, Gordon Franz, Charles Savelle, Alexander Schick, Explorator, Paleojudaica, Chris McKinny

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Leen Ritmeyer has created a new 41-slide presentation on “Jerusalem in the Time of Nehemiah” that is now available through his webstore.

The Byzantine mosaic recently discovered in Yavne will be displayed outside the city’s cultural center.

David Hendin explains how the coins of Sepphoris provide a “fascinating historic portrait of the city.”

John DeLancey’s latest devotion from Israel is about 1 Samuel 17 and the battle of David and Goliath.

New on This Week in the Ancient Near East podcast: “The Strange Story of the Roman Era Half Lamp, or A Sconce to Light Their Way.”

Zoom lecture on June 3: “Digging Up Armageddon: The Search for the Lost City of Solomon,” by Eric H. Cline.

The publisher L’Erma di Bretschneider has 92 titles related to the archaeology of Pompeii and Herculaneum that are discounted by 55% through May 23.

The transatlantic voyage of a reconstruction of a 6th-century-BC ship suggests that the Phoenicians had the technical ability to sail to America, but whether they ever did so is debatable.

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

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A “lost city” from the time of Amenhotep III has been discovered near Luxor. “After seven months of excavations, several neighborhoods have been uncovered, including a bakery complete with ovens and storage pottery, as well as administrative and residential districts.” The excavating team is hailing it as the “second most important archeological discovery since the tomb of Tutankhamun.”

The National Museum of Egyptian Civilization in Cairo opened on April 3, and Luxor Times has posted a 30-minute walking tour.

NPR has posted a number of photos of the spectacle dubbed “The Pharaohs’ Golden Parade.”

Hikers in the northwestern Negev discovered a rare Egyptian scarab amulet dating to the 9th–8th centuries BC.

500 caves have been excavated in the Judean wilderness in recent years, and it is estimated that it will take 2-3 years to finish what remains.

William A. Ross looks at what the recent Dead Sea Scrolls discovery means for Septuagint studies.

A bronze tablet from Yemen dating to the 1st century BC mentions a temple dedicated to a previously unknown god.

Visitors can now take a virtual tour of Baalbek that shows the site as it looks today as well as at its height in the Roman period.

Carl Rasmussen shares several photos of a well-preserved but seldom-visited portion of the Diolkos near Corinth.

April 13, 8:30 pm (Eastern): Steve Austin will be giving a special session on “Climate Change, Dead Sea Mud & Bible Chronology.” Registration is required, and the session will not be recorded.

April 14, 8:00 pm (Eastern): Lawrence Schiffman will be speaking about the newly discovered Dead Sea Scrolls.

April 14, 8:00 pm (Eastern): Beth Alpert Nakhai will be speaking on “The Real Lives of Women in Biblical Times.” Registration costs $7.

Thomas E. Levy provides a summary of William G. Dever’s life as recounted in his recently published autobiography.

Brunilde Ridgway’s review of John Boardman’s A Classical Archaeologist’s Life: The Story So Far: An Autobiography provides a good summary of an extraordinarily productive life.

“During the next three years, RINBE will create a complete and authoritative modern presentation of the entire corpus of the royal inscriptions of the six kings of the Neo-Babylonian Empire in print and in a fully annotated (linguistically tagged), open-access digital format.” Some is already available, including a pdf of The Royal Inscriptions of Amēl-Marduk (561–560 BC), Neriglissar (559–556 BC), and Nabonidus (555–539 BC), Kings of Babylon (Royal Inscriptions of the Neo-Babylonian Empire 2), by Frauke Weiershäuser and Jamie Novotny (and for sale here).

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

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A statue of Ramesses II has been placed in the Grand Hall of the Great Egyptian Museum so that the rays of the sun will illuminate it on February 22 and October 22 each year.

Closing on March 14: “Queen Nefertari’s Egypt,” at the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth.

Carole Raddato provides a list of the top 5 archaeological sites in Lebanon.

The British Museum identifies the top 10 historical board games, beginning with the Royal Game of Ur.

Duncan Howitt-Marshall explains how the ancient Greeks set us on the path to Mars.

Police recovered a rare bronze plate with a decree from Emperor Tiberius.

The renovated mausoleum of Emperor Augustus in Rome has reopened after being closed for many years.

Tyler Rossi writes about portraiture on ancient Roman coinage, noting that Julius Caesar was the first living person depicted on a Roman coin. Was this why he was assassinated?

in AramcoWorld’s well-illustrated article “The Quest for Blue,” Tom Verde explains that the color blue, while pervasive in nature, is much harder to reproduce and required considerable ingenuity in the ancient world.

Now in paperback from Oxford University Press: Archaeology and the Letters of Paul, by Laura Sarah Nasrallah.

HT: Agade, Explorator, Ted Weis, Paleojudaica

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Bryan Windle identifies the top three reports in biblical archaeology in December.

Funding has been allocated to install a new, retractable floor in the Colosseum of Rome. The restored version will include replicas of trapdoors, lifts and other mechanical elements.

Michael Arnold explains how Phoenicia’s banking and commerce allowed them to thrive in the Mediterranean world for a millennium.

A new project is examining the impact of dams on archaeology and heritage in the Middle East and North Africa.

New: Jerusalem and Other Holy Places as Foci of Multireligious and Ideological Confrontation, edited by Pieter B. Hartog, Shulamit Laderman, Vered Tohar, and Archibald L.H.M. van Wieringen

New: M. Campeggi, Karkemish. Report on the Investigations in the Area of the Halaf Kilns at Yunus, by M. Campeggi (fascicle for purchase; download free)

New: Zoara, the Southern Ghor of Jordan: A Guide to the Landscape and Heritage of the Lowest Place on Earth, by Konstantinos D. Politis (open access)

Francesco M. Benedettucci has created a very extensive listing of internet resources on the archaeology of Jordan. The latest updates are provided on his Academia page.

Mark Wilson has published an article in Adalya: “The Discovery of a Menorah in Attalia (Kaleici, Antalya) and its Significance for Jewish Communities in Pamphylia” (pdf).

Online lecture on Jan 5: Ido Koch will be speaking on “One Hundred Years of Assyrian Colonialism,” from the campaigns of Tiglath-pileser III to Ashurbanipal. To receive the Zoom link, write to write to [email protected].

Online lecture on Jan 14: Why are the Dead Sea Scrolls so Sensational?, by James Charlesworth

“Alex Joffe, JP Dessel, and Rachel Hallote announce a new podcast, This Week in the Ancient Near East. Recent episodes feature discussions of the role of a comet in ushering in plant and animal domestication, the discovery of cannabis and frankincense in a Judean temple, an Iron Age figurine suggested to depict the face of God, and other new and interesting finds.” Listen or subscribe on Podbean, Apple Podcasts and Google Podcasts.

The latest on Thin End of the Wedge podcast: Daniel Nicky: Teaching Mesopotamia through music.

In a flashy new video, Aren Maeir invites you to join his team in excavating the Philistine city of Gath this coming summer.

Mike Beall and Mike Markowitz provide a tour of coins of the Bible in a 33-minute video conversation.

Carl Rasmussen gives some suggestions for enjoying what he considers to be the most beautiful museum in Athens: The New Acropolis Museum.

HT: Agade, Explorator, Ted Weis, Arne Halbakken, Paleojudaica, Ferrell Jenkins

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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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