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Israeli reserve soldiers discovered an ancient basalt mortar while on patrol near the Gaza Strip.

Marek Dospěl summarizes the argument for locating Peter’s house at Bethsaida (el-Araj) rather than Capernaum.

“The ancient remains of an unborn fetus found in the headless mummy of an Egyptian teenager shows she died while giving birth to twins.”

The latest issue of ‘Atiqot focuses on “The Archaeology of Purity,” and includes articles about the Pool of Siloam, ritual baths, and a chalk quarry on Mount Scopus.

New release: The Nubian Pharaohs of Egypt: Their Lives and Afterlives, by Aidan Dodson (AUC Press, $35)

The bi-weekly Research Seminar of the Archaeology department at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev will now be accessible to the public via Zoom. Lectures are given in English, and take place every other Tuesday, 9:15-10:45 am Eastern Time. The next lecture will be on January 23 entitled “Identities in the Making: Foodways and Table Manners in the City, Village, and Temple in Hellenistic Idumea,” by Débora Sandhaus.

Petra M. Creamer looks at what burial practices reveal about the power of an empire over its subjects, looking specifically at mortuary practices in couple of Assyrian cities.

The Biblical Archaeology Society is offering a free 2024 calendar (with email address and option to receive daily newsletter).

Steven Anderson who works with me on the Photo Companion to the Bible was interviewed for the Daily Dose of Aramaic (YouTube, Vimeo) to celebrate a special milestone for that ministry.

Carl Rasmussen has posted photos taken by David Padfield inside the Dome of the Rock.

HT: Agade, Arne Halbakken, Ted Weis

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(Post by A.D. Riddle)

For those living in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, there will be a very special showing of Hebrew Scrolls this coming Saturday. Many, perhaps, have seen a Torah scroll, which contains the text of the first five books of the Bible—the books of Moses. This collection of scrolls is rare, however, in that in includes the entire Old Testament.

Dallas International University is hosting the exhibition. The event is scheduled for Saturday, January 13, at 3:00pm, in the Event Center on campus.

The exhibition will begin with a talk covering topics such as the Hebrew Old Testament (or Tanakh), unique items in the scroll collection, and techniques used by scribes to copy a scroll. After the talk, visitors will be able to examine the scrolls up-close, discuss and ask questions about the scrolls, and take photographs. Some of the scrolls are several centuries old, some were specially commissioned in more recent times. This event is free and open to the public.

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A monumental tomb from the Roman era has been excavated at the Apollo Smintheus Sanctuary in western Turkey.

The head of Dionysus was discovered in Cyrene following a major storm.

Greece has reopened to tourists the palace where Alexander the Great was crowned.

Nathan Steinmeyer provides a list of the top ten biblical archaeology stories of 2023, in no particular order.

Jessica Nitschke lists ten exciting discoveries in Near Eastern archaeology last year.

Paleojudaica lists the top ten stories for 2023.

Hurriyet Daily News identifies the top 10 archaeological discoveries in Turkey in 2023.

The Greek Herald names the top four Greek archaeological discoveries of the year, one of which is in Jerusalem.

Gizmodo surveys the best archaeological discoveries from around the world.

“The Lexicon of Greek Personal Names (LGPN) traces every bearer of every name, drawing on a huge variety of evidence, from personal tombstones, dedications, works of art, to civic decrees, treaties, citizen-lists, artefacts, graffiti etc.: in other words, from all Greek literary sources, documentary sources (inscriptions and papyri), coins, and artefacts.”

“30 antiquities, with a collective value of $3.7 million, were returned to Greece” by the Manhattan District Attorney.

Jonathan Robie explains how artificial intelligence is beneficial in creating Bible translations.

Zoom lecture on Jan 23: “Scrolls and Scribes: How Well has the Bible Survived?,” by Hugh Williamson

Walking The Text has just released its “Proclamations of Christmas Study Guide.”

Leon Mauldin shares photos of the Arch of Constantine, with a close-up of the Battle of the Milvian Bridge.

HT: Agade, Arne Halbakken, Ted Weis, Gordon Dickson

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“Archaeologists in Turkey have unearthed more than 2,000 clay seal impressions that ancient [Roman] officials once used to fasten government documents.”

The Imhotep Museum in Saqqara has reopened after a year of renovations.

“An ancient clay tablet at Yale has shed light on how the ‘Epic of Gilgamesh’ has evolved over the ages.

Expedition Bible’s latest video goes to Nineveh in Iraq to explore the site and understand its significance for the Bible.

“A team of German researchers has figured out a new way to train computers to recognize cuneiform and even make the contents of millennia-old tablets searchable like a website, making it possible to digitize and assemble larger libraries of these ancient texts.”

“Authorities in New York have been accused by leading academics in France and Britain of repatriating fake Roman artefacts to Lebanon.” Does this mean that ancient mosaics were never stolen in the first place?

ASOR webinar on Dec 14: “The Wheat from the Chaff: What we can Learn from Studying Plants in Antiquity,” by Jennifer Ramsay ($13).

The world’s only intact Roman shield will be part of an exhibit at the British Museum opening in February.

eHammurabi provides a digital version of the Law Code of Hammurabi, including cuneiform, transliteration, normalization, English translation, some comments, and a brief bibliography.

Konstantinos Politis recalls the impact that Jonathan Tubb had in his career as an archaeologist, working at Tell es-Sa’idiyeh, the Palestine Exploration Fund, and the British Museum. A festschrift was released shortly before his death.

Will Varner explains why Hannukah is not the Jewish Christmas.

HT: Agade, Arne Halbakken, Ted Weis

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Aren Maeir and colleagues have written three articles in the forthcoming Israel Exploration Journal that raises questions about the Mount Ebal “curse inscription,” including “whether it is an inscription, its dating, its function (it is most probably a mundane lead fishing weight) and other issues.” The story is reported by The Jerusalem Post and Haaretz.

A new study of lion bones discovered at Tel Burna suggests that local leaders displayed them as trophies of their prowess. Ruth Schuster’s article includes a lot of more general information about lions in the ancient world.

Zoom lecture on Dec 6: “The Schooling of a Scribe in Ancient Israel,” by Christopher Rollston, hosted by the Anglo-Israel Archaeological Society.

The Near East Archaeological Society has a list of twenty papers given at the recent conference in San Antonio. Videos of three of the presentations have been posted:

  • The Kingdom of the Palastin: Sea Peoples of the North?, by Brian Janeway
  • The Late Date versus the Early Date at the Mount Ebal Altar, by Abigail Leavitt
  • Fifth Excavation Season at Shiloh, by Scott Stripling

Bryan Windle surveys the top three reports in biblical archaeology for the month of November.

Bible Mapper Atlas links to a series of free maps related to Christmas.

Carl Rasmussen is leading a “comprehensive 35-day Bible Study Tour to Israel/Jordan, Turkey, and Greece.” Participants can join one or more of the segments of the trip. (The Turkey portion looks particularly outstanding to me.)

Kristine Garroway discusses children in ancient Israel in the latest episode of Biblical World.

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

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A new study reports on some of the earliest evidence of warfare—424 biconical slingstones from the Early Chalcolithic period discovered at two sites in northern Israel.

Chandler Collins has produced his latest Jerusalem Tracker, with the latest news, publications, and media about the holy city.

The latest issue of DigSight, produced by the Institute of Archaeology at Southern Adventist University, has stories on a new museum exhibit, the inscribed ivory comb, and a new Archaeology and Cultural Background Study Bible.

The Biblical Archaeology Society has announced its publication awards for 2023 in the following categories:

  • Best Book on Archaeology
  • Best Dig Report
  • Best Book on the Hebrew Bible
  • Best Book on the New Testament

Bryan Windle discusses the top ten archaeological discoveries related to the book of Joshua on a latest episode of Digging for Truth.

Israel’s Good Name reports on a berry-picking expedition near Shiloh that he went on this summer.

James R. Strange is on The Book and the Spade discussing his new book, Excavating the Land of Jesus.

Jerusalem University College has announced its online courses for the spring semester, including:

HT: Agade, Arne Halbakken, Keith Keyser

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