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The Antioch Seminar on Paul and Peter will be held from July 9 to 16, 2023. Mark Wilson is the program director, and the program includes visits to Antioch, Tarsus, Cyprus, Perga, and Antalya. This is a great opportunity to go deeper on an area of Turkey and Cyprus that is not on most tours.

Construction workers discovered a beautiful Roman mosaic in Hatay (near biblical Antioch on the Orontes).

The first four shrines of King Tut are now in their permanent location in the Grand Egyptian Museum.

“An analysis of the remains of a 2,000-year-old Egyptian mummy found that she may have suffered from nasopharyngeal cancer.”

“The reliefs at the Camel Site [in Saudi Arabia] thus provide unique insights into the yearly rhythm of the seasons and their symbolism for Neolithic populations.”

Webinar on August 28: “Columns as Cultural Capital: The Jordanian Practice of Gifting Archaeological Objects,” by Elizabeth R. Macaulay

HebrewPal (the Hebrew Palaeography Album) is a fully-searchable online database of Hebrew palaeography.”

Carl Rasmussen went to McDonalds near Rome in order to see a Roman road branching off from the via Appia. He shares photos. Also, Carl will be leading one large 33-day Bible Study Tour next year, divided into three segments.

Bible Mapper has created more free maps for everyone:

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Arne Halbakken

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Excavations at the Church of the Holy Sepulcher have revealed rock layers of a stone quarry used for the construction of Constantine’s church. A press release from the Franciscan Custody of the Holy Land gives more details about all of the excavation works in progress.

“An Israel Antiquities Authority bust in the northern Israeli city of Afula late last week yielded thousands of ancient coins and arrowheads.”

The Druze military fortress on Mount Arbel will open after being closed for a year and a half for conservation work.

The Museum of the Bible and DIVE are offering a virtual tour of Shiloh on August 10 ($20).

John DeLancey just returned from volunteering at the Tel Dan excavation, and he shares his experiences on The Book and the Spade.

Bryan Windle has created a well-illustrated archaeological biography of King Menahem. (If you don’t remember who that is, you’ll be reminded in the first paragraph.)

Cynthia Shafer Elliott writes about the first post in a series on the geographical context of ancient Israel, looking at Israel’s place in the ANE.

Leen Ritmeyer notes the publication of JewishQuarter Excavations, Volume VIII, focused on the Palatial Mansion. Leen has created a beautiful new reconstruction drawing of the mansion, available in his image library for only $6.

Glamping is increasingly popular in Israel, including rooftop options in Jerusalem.

I watched Gesher Media’s “The Philistines: Warriors to the West” and was very impressed with the high-quality production, featuring top archaeologists, an interesting storyline, and (my favorite!) stunning aerial footage. For $7.99, you can stream it anytime.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Arne Halbakken

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Remains of a bridge over the Tiber built by Emperor Nero have been exposed by historically low levels of the river.

“Archaeologists have unearthed the ruins of what they believe was one of the greatest fire temples in Iran during the Sassanid age.”

A recent study of three Roman amphorae taken from a shipwreck revealed how Romans made wine.

Turkish Archaeological News posts a roundup of stories from the month of June.

“The mania for touring sites and treasures along the Nile is nearly as old as the pyramids of Giza. A recent wave of archaeological discoveries and museum openings has made the experience feel novel.” (subscription)

The new Archaeological Museum of Alexandroupolis has opened. The city is located near Greece’s border with Turkey.

The Met is now one of the most expensive museums in the world. The article lists other contenders.

“Two exhibitions at the Getty Villa explore the links between the Assyrian and the Persian Empires, which both revolved around powerful monarchs.” (subscription)

Zoom lecture on July 13: “Riddle of the Rosetta,” by Diane Josefowicz ($7)

New release: Moving on from Ebla, I Crossed the Euphrates: An Assyrian Day in Honour of Paolo Matthiae, edited by Davide Nadali, Lorenzo Nigro, Frances Pinnock (Archaeopress, 2022)

Carl Rasmussen shares photos of four emperor statues that were discovered in the cult room of the Augustales chapel at Herculaneum.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Explorator

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This year’s excavations at the Jewish synagogue of Huqoq in Galilee uncovered the first known depictions of Deborah and Jael.

“A professor at the University of Haifa claimed on Wednesday that he had deciphered a 3,500-year-old stone tablet discovered in Jerusalem more than a decade ago, contending that the artifact’s inscription was a curse against the city’s governor at the time.” In response, Christopher Rollston doubts whether it is an inscription at all, and he notes some troubling similarities with the Mount Ebal Lead Inscription.

A brush fire cleared the overgrowth at Tel Gezer but did not cause damage to the archaeological ruins. There are more photos and video (in Hebrew) here.

Week 3 has been the most productive week of excavations at Tel Burna this season.

Was Hezekiah’s Tunnel fitted with a sluice gate to allow water to flow into the Siloam Tunnel and Round Chamber? Chandler Collins summarizes a new theory and identifies some problems with it. You can also subscribe to Chandler’s new newsletter.

Bible History Daily has begun a series on excavations in biblical lands. The first post asks volunteers and students questions about their experiences in the ongoing excavations at Tel Hadid in the Tel Aviv area.

Jason Staples believes that from the exilic period on, the term “Jews” was a subset of the larger group of “Israelites.”

The Albright Institute has issued a call for applications for fellowships for the year 2023-2024.

New release: Women and the Religion of Ancient Israel, by Susan Ackerman (Anchor Yale Bible Reference Library, 2022). Also at Amazon.

New release: Encyclopedia of Material Culture in the Biblical World: A New Biblisches Reallexikon, edited by Angelika Berlejung (Mohr Siebeck, 2022).

Zoom lecture on July 14: “Water the Willow Tree: Memoirs of a Bethlehem Boyhood,” with book author George A. Kiraz talking with Sarah Irving and Jacob Norris.

Online on October 8-9: The 25th Annual Bible and Archaeology Fest, sponsored by the Biblical Archaeology Society and featuring more than 20 speakers.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Explorator

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“An ongoing underwater archaeological project [near Antikythera Island in Greece] most recently recovered a large marble head of a bearded male figure believed to be part of a statue of Hercules.”

Archaeologists discovered granite blocks from the time of Khufu at the temple of the Sun in Heliopolis, along with many other remains.

A study of cattle teeth discovered at Ur sheds light on the economy, health, and diet of ancient Mesopotamia.

Isabella Segalovich gives a brief history of women’s eyebrows in art.

Robyn Ramsden gives workshops on how to create your own Nag Hammadi codex.

“Italy has been so successful in recovering ancient artworks and artifacts that were illegally exported from the country it has created a museum for them.”

“The funerary portraiture from the city of Palmyra, in the eastern Roman Empire, is a rich and heterogenous display of identity dating to the first three centuries CE.”

“A new exhibit at the Israel Museum uses VR technology to bring back to life the rich heritage of the destroyed Great Synagogue of Aleppo.”

New release: The Archaeology of Iran from the Palaeolithic to the Achaemenid Empire, by Roger Matthews and Hassan Fazeli Nashli. Also available as a free download.

New release: A Guide to Scenes of Daily Life on Athenian Vases, by John Howard Oakley (University of Wisconsin Press, 2020). Summarized and reviewed here.

Carl Rasmussen shares photos of the only completely preserved chapel for emperor worship in the Roman world.

Joel Kramer’s latest video is about his visit to Babylon and how the prophecies against the city were fulfilled.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Arne Halbakken, Paleojudaica

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Archaeologists have excavated two Late Bronze tombs belonging to wealthy families near Hala Sultan Tekke on Cyprus.

“New excavations of the ancient complex of Girsu in Iraq, led by the British Museum, have the potential to rewrite accepted histories of the development in Mesopotamia.”

“The pyramids in Egypt are more famous, but the ones in Sudan hide royal burial sites that archaeologists can explore—as long as they don’t mind swimming.” (National Geographic; requires email registration)

“The Lost Heritage Atlas initiative is dedicated to collecting the history and memory of those archaeological sites, monuments, sacred places or cultural items that have been completely destroyed.

A rapid change of climate did not cause the fall of the Akkadian empire.

New releases: The Oxford History of the Ancient Near East: Volume II: From the End of the Third Millennium BC to the Fall of Babylon and The Oxford History of the Ancient Near East: Volume III: From the Hyksos to the Late Second Millennium BC, by Karen Radner, Nadine Moeller, and D. T. Potts. $150 each (slightly cheaper at Amazon)

thetruesize.com allows you to easily compare the sizes of countries. Israel, for example, is smaller than any of its neighbors.

“Jordan’s Tourism and Antiquities Ministry plans to encourage visits to Madaba after the Arab League designated the city as the Arab Capital of Tourism” for 2022.

The Greek Reporter lists six lesser-known archaeological sites to visit near Athens.

Carl Rasmussen shares about a funny thing that happened on his way to the temple of Apollo at Didyma.

Mark Hoffman reports on the creation of three new Pauline pilgrimage paths in Greece to open in the next couple of years. Anyone want to go hiking?

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Arne Halbakken, Explorator

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