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“Archaeologists have uncovered a marble head of the Roman emperor Augustus in the Italian town of Isernia.”

Researchers “have successfully sequenced the genome of previously extinct date palm varieties that lived more than 2,000 years ago.”

The Roman Colosseum will have its event floor rebuilt in a $18 million remodeling project.

Many academics are criticizing planned renovations to the Athens acropolis.

The Mosul Museum is being rebuilt after its destruction by ISIS.

The ancient site of Assos will be closed for more than a year while work is done to stabilize the slope.

“Turkish Archaeological News collects the most important, interesting and inspiring news from Turkish excavation sites. Here’s the review for April 2021.”

Zoom lecture on May 4: “Clues in Cuneiform: Lives Revealed in Ancient Records of Mesopotamia,” by Amanda Podany

Thousands of monumental structures built from walls of rock in Saudi Arabia are older than Egypt’s pyramids and the ancient stone circles of Britain, researchers say – making them perhaps the earliest ritual landscape ever identified.”

Andrew Shortland investigates the earliest use and production of glass in the ancient Near East.

The French thought it was a toe, but Rome’s Capitoline Museums has recognized the bronze piece is a 15-inch-long index finger, now reattached to a colossal statue of Constantine.

The British Museum blog takes a look at the gods and goddesses of the Greek and Roman pantheon.

HT: Agade, Ted Weis, Joseph Lauer, Arne Halbakken, Explorator

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Researchers investigating a perfectly circular structure submerged under the Sea of Galilee are considering a possible connection to the tomb of Aqhat in Ugaritic mythology. The underlying journal article is here.

Mark Hoffman writes about the new “Timelapse in Google Earth,” with a couple of suggested views to check out.

Chris McKinny is on the Out of Zion podcast discussing the biblical and geographical backgrounds related to crossing the Jordan River.

Wendy Slaninka continues the fascinating story of her grandfather, James Leslie Starkey, excavator of Lachish.

Sudarsan Raghavan writes about the latest discoveries at Saqqara for the Washington Post.

“Pharaonic history provides us with well-documented cases of condemnation of the memory of specific individuals – what we today call damnatio memoriae.”

A project using artificial intelligence has determined that the Great Isaiah Scroll was written by two scribes, not one (Times of Israel, Jerusalem Post, Haaretz premium, journal article).

New: Babylon: The Great City, by Olof Pedersén (Zaphon, 2021). Available in hardcover (44 €) and pdf (free).

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Arne Halbakken, Ferrell Jenkins, Keith Keyser, Explorator, G. M. Grena

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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 well-preserved Roman arena, partially buried and hidden by vegetation, has been discovered in the ancient city of Mastaura, in Western Turkey.

A new study suggests it only took fifteen minutes after the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius for the city of Pompeii to be engulfed in its lethal plume.

The ancient Diolkos of Corinth is being restored. The stone-paved road was once used for transporting ships across the isthmus. The well-illustrated article includes a video showing the Diolkos in operation.

Restoration work has begun at Alexandria, Egypt, on the sea wall, lighthouse, and ancient bridge.

NewScientist has a brief report on the excavations of Berenike, ancient Egypt’s southernmost port.

The NY Times has a feature on the forgotten pyramids of Sudan, with some beautiful photos.

BBC: “Kelly Grovier explores how images depicting a staged lion hunt were used to proclaim a king’s greatness.”

Webinar on April 12 and 13: “Jehu’s Tribute: What Can Biblical Studies Offer Assyriology?” Free registration is required.

Now online: The Archaeological Gazetteer of Iran: An Online Encyclopedia of Iranian Archaeological Sites, a free open-access online encyclopedia maintained by UCLA.

Ancient Iran: A Digital Platform provides various resources including timeline, maps, teaching tools, and photos.

The Louvre announced it now has more than half a million objects from its collection available to view online. The museum has hundreds of important objects related to biblical history.

Mark Wilson is on The Book and the Spade discussing the latest excavations at Laodicea, including an alleged house church.

“For Israelis, this year, Passover marks a celebration of freedom from virus.”

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

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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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A nearly intact 4-wheel ceremonial carriage has been found near Pompeii. Here’s a 3-D view and here’s a short video.

“Pompeii has completed a major restoration on a large fresco in the garden of the House of the Ceii, bringing back to life its intense colours, with the help of laser technology.”

A cemetery recently iscovered in Larnaca, Cyprus, was in use from the 12th century BC to the Roman period.

David Hendin provides a primer on silver shekels and half-shekels from Tyre, including addressing the difficult question of why these coins were chosen for use in the Jerusalem temple.

Discoveries in a tomb at Achziv may reflect the ancient “victory song” tradition evidenced in the accounts of Miriam, Deborah, Jephthah, David.

Drones equipped with multispectral cameras are providing clues of the path followed by water canals dug 2,000 years ago in Spain to support Roman-era gold mining operations.”

Pope Francis will be leading a prayer service at the ancient site of Ur. Iraqis hope the visit will help to bring back tourists.

The IAA website reviews the exhibition, “Owning the Past: From Mesopotamia to Iraq at the Ashmolean Museum.

David Moster explains what is the Bible’s most mispronounced letter, and how that plays out in the names of Jerusalem, Jericho, and other names.

The spring issue of Biblical Archaeology Review includes articles on the Holy Sepulcher, the “face of God,” and Auja el-Foqa.

Pinar Durgun provides tips for searching online museum collections.

Al Hoerth died in October. The Book and the Spade brings back an interview with him from 2006.

HT: Agade, Arne Halbakken, Chris McKinny, Ted Weis, Alexander Schick

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