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The discovery of bullae in Jerusalem indicates that at the time of Hezekiah there were two central treasuries, one a temple treasury and the other the royal treasury of Judah located at the “Royal Building” in the Ophel excavations. The underlying article will be posted soon at the website of the Jerusalem Journal of Archaeology, but is available now on Academia.

An analysis of remains found under a toilet south of ancient Jerusalem reveals that the people who used it were infected with a variety of parasites.

“Almost four miles of alleys in Jerusalem’s Old City were recently made wheelchair-friendly, while an innovative accessibility system for visually impaired people is also being installed after ten years of work.”

There is a new virtual tour of the City of David. To access it, you have to enter your email address, but once you are in, you can virtually walk around the tour areas of the City of David. I am more impressed with the 360-degree views than the very brief explanations given, but I do not know of anything comparable.

The Anglo-Israel Archaeological Society has announced its upcoming lectures to be held on Zoom:

  • Jan 20: Three Decades of Excavations at Bethsaida, by Rami Arav
  • Feb 17: New Light on Iron Age and Persian Period Jerusalem, by Yuval Gadot
  • Mar 15: Did Rabbis Write Down the Mishnah? Orality and Writing in the Jewish World in Late Antiquity, by Philip Alexander

Aren Maeir reflects on his work as an archaeologist in an interview in the Discussions with the Diggers series.

Israel’s Good Name reports on a couple of recent excursions in the vicinity of Givat Ze’ev in the territory of Benjamin.

Suzanne Singer, one of the original correspondents for Biblical Archaeology Review, has died in Jerusalem.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Alexander Schick, Arne Halbakken, Mark Hoffman

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Hundreds of Israelis trekked to Har Karkom on December 21 to see the “Burning Bush” phenomenon.

Israel’s (quasi-)observance of the sabbatical year may provide income for Gaza’s farmers.

Dozens of ancient sites in Jerusalem are suffering from neglect.

Israeli police caught a group of antiquities thieves plundering Horvat Zaak, a Jewish village from the Second Temple period in southern Judea.

Elisabeth Yehuda writes about wine production in the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem.

The Israeli government has approved a $48 million aid package for the tourism industry, some of which is designated for retraining programs.

The list of speakers and topics has been released for JUC’s Transitions in the Land online seminar. Registration is free and open to all.

The complete series of 26 episodes is now available of “Conversations in the Archaeology and History of Ancient Israel with Israel Finkelstein.”

Releasing today: Footsteps Every Day: A Daily Devotional is a year-long journey through all four Gospels, led by Bob Rognlien, author of Recovering the Way. The website includes a video introduction and sample devotions.

Ralph W. Klein died this week.

Bryan Windle highlights the top three reports in biblical archaeology for the month of December.

Three new top 10 lists for 2021:

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

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Archaeologists have found a second synagogue at Magdala, making the site the first to have two known synagogues in the first century AD. A 2-min video (in Hebrew) shows some of the excavation.

A police stop of a vehicle driving the wrong way on a one-way street in Jerusalem led to the discovery of some interesting archaeological artifacts from the Roman period.

A “new Sanhedrin Trail exhibition at the Yigal Allon Center on Kibbutz Ginosar includes 150 rare ancient artifacts from the Israel Antiquities Authority.”

The exhibition catalog for the Tel Rehov exhibit at the Eretz Israel Museum is online at Amihai Mazar’s Academia page.

Katharina Schmidt, currently the Director of the German Protestant Institute of Archaeology in Amman has been appointed as Director of the W. F. Albright Institute in Jerusalem.

A new English translation of the Jerusalem Talmud has been released online.

David Moster made a video about what makes the Tanakh different from the Old Testament.

Moshe Gilad recommends a visit to Gezer, including a walk down the new staircase into the ancient water system.

A fire broke out at the Crusader castle of Belvoir (Kochav Hayarden), temporarily trapping about 30 construction workers.

Bible & Archaeology shares news and stories that inform and entertain, promoting the study of the Bible, archaeology, and ancient civilizations, while celebrating their many diverse cultures and histories.”

Cyndi Parker is on the Biblical World podcast speaking with Lynn Cohick about “what it means to understand Jesus in his own cultural, political, social, and religious contexts.”

Baruch Levine died on Thursday.

The latest free maps from Bible Mapper:

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Arne Halbakken, Alexander Schick, Keith Keyser, Explorator

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“Archaeologists in Turkey have discovered 400 rock-cut chamber tombs that date to 1,800 years ago and make up part of one of the largest rock-cut chamber tomb necropolises in the world.”

There is controversy over a renovation plan for the Bodrum Museum which would relocate the famous shipwrecks of the Museum of Underwater Archaeology in order to convert the space into a mosque.

The ancient city of Dolichiste was a thriving Lycian trading hub until it was partially submerged in the Byzantine period.

The tombs of gladiators in Ephesus shed light on our knowledge of the ancient warriors.

An Italian archaeologist who has been excavating in Turkey for 30 years is ready to retire.

“During the excavation of the now-famous northwest corner of Rameses III’s fortress from the first half of the 12th century BCE, archaeologists unexpectedly came across two more fortress walls covering each other.”

New exhibit at the Art Museum of the University of Memphis: “Writing in Three Dimensions: Myth and Metaphor in Ancient Egypt,” through November 29.

Personal letters provide insight into the lives of ancient Egyptians.

Archaeologists have made what they are calling a “sensational” new find with the discovery of a skeleton a step away from the sea at Herculaneum.

A Lebanese official has been caught with antiquities looted from Syrian museums in his office.

“Escape to the past and explore true crime in antiquity during a free week-long online experience of the Getty Villa Museum’s annual College Night.”

Leon Mauldin has recently returned from a tour of Greece and Turkey, and he shares photos of Assos and Corinth.

Thomas Parker, director of several archaeological projects in Jordan, passed away suddenly last month.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Arne Halbakken, Ted Weis, A.D. Riddle, Paleojudaica, Explorator, BibleX

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Several dozen fossilized shark teeth were discovered in the City of David.

The first week of excavations has ended at Tell es-Safi. Here’s the most recent update.

The IAA announced the discovery of a “city council building” near the Western Wall. But this same building has been open to tourists for several decades, so I think the story is more properly that additional facts have been learned about this building, such as that it was used as a triclinium, featured a fountain, and was built in AD 20 (and not in the Hasmonean era). Or maybe the story is that a new tourist route is opening.

A new study has found that Egypt’s primary source of copper during the Third Intermediate Period was the Arabah, in turn suggesting that this was a significant motivation for Shishak’s campaign (underlying journal article here).

Bible History Daily introduces a recent BAR article by Jeffrey P. Garcia by describing the three pilgrimage paths from Galilee to Jerusalem.

Brian Blum describes his hike on the new Emmaus Trail which runs from Abu Ghosh to Canada Park. The trail begins near a new visitor center that includes a museum dedicated to the life of Jesus.

The Bethsaida (et-Tell) Excavations Project website has been updated with the latest publications, including field reports.

New release: The Koren Tanakh of the Land of Israel – Samuel, edited by David Arnovitz. Contributors include Aren Maier, Yosef Garfinkel, Erez Ben-Yosef, and Chris McKinny (publisher’s website; Amazon). An early enthusiastic review is here; the previously released Exodus volume is available here.

Free download: Beneath the Church of the Holy Sepulchre Jerusalem: The Archaeology and Early History of Traditional Golgotha, by Shimon Gibson & Joan E. Taylor (Palestine Exploration Fund, 1994)

Ram Gophna, Professor Emeritus at Tel Aviv University, died on Monday.

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

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Forty years after it was discovered in Arbel by a private citizen, a Byzantine amulet featuring the name of the God of Israel has been turned over to the Israel Antiquities Authority.

“A new study scrutinizing 2,000 years of fish consumption in the ancient holy land has found that — despite clear Torah prohibitions — non-kosher finless and scaleless fish were generally eaten by all peoples, regardless of ethnic and religious affiliation.” The story is based on a Tel Aviv journal article.

Israel’s Good Name visited the northwest Negev and saw plenty of birds, several reservoirs, a couple of bridges, and animal parts falling from the sky.

On the bicentenary of Napoleon’s death, Stephane Cohen revisits his campaign in Palestine in 1799.

The director of the Israel Museum is stepping down after four years.

The summer issue of Biblical Archaeology Review includes articles on New Testament figures confirmed in archaeology, a history of the paleo-Hebrew script, and remembrances of Hershel Shanks.

The Biblical Archaeology Study Group of Tyndale House will be meeting virtually on June 30, with lectures on the Amorites, Ugarit, David’s scribes, and the exodus, by various scholars including Alan Millard and James Hoffmeier.

Webinar on May 31 and June 1: “Sheshonq (Shishak) in Palestine.” Registration required.

Webinar on June 17: “Reconsidering the Role of Nomads in Ancient Israel and Its World.” (Zoom link)

The first group of tourists to arrive in Israel for more than a year was a vaccinated group of theology students from Missouri. (Showing them all wearing masks is not good P.R.)

Eilat Mazar died on Tuesday at the age of 64 after a long illness. Following in the footsteps of her grandfather, Benjamin Mazar, her work focused especially on the City of David and southern Temple Mount excavations. A list of her publications is here.

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

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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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