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On their first day back to sifting, the Temple Mount Sifting Project discovered their first pur, just in time for Purim.

This Times of Israel article has some drone footage that clearly shows the damage to the Mount Ebal altar site. The article details the firestorm that erupted. The Jerusalem Post argues for protection for the site.

Conservators are injecting the stones of the Western Wall with grout to help them withstand the effects of weathering.

Erez Ben-Yosef and Elisabetta Boaretto are interviewed on the weekly podcast from The Times of Israel about Solomonic copper mines and radiocarbon dating.

Aren Maeir’s MOOC on “Biblical Archaeology: The Archaeology of Ancient Israel and Judah” returns on March 8. This will be the fourth run, and the course is free.

Online on March 6: A Virtual Tour of Israel: Haifa, a Shared City. Free registration is required.

Chris McKinny continues his discussion of historical geography and archaeology at sites in central Israel including Gezer, Masada, Qumran, Jericho, Shiloh, and Caesarea.

Dumbest tradition ever: After conquering the Promised Land, Joshua asked God if he could go to Mesopotamia to die.

Bible Archaeology Report’s top three for February: “something deciphered, something discovered and something damaged.”

In light of the oil disaster on Israel’s shore, Shmuel Browns shares a series of Coastline photos.

HT: Agade, Arne Halbakken, Chris McKinny

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The enclosure wall around the Mount Ebal altar has been restored. And Israel’s defense minister is not allowing a visit by the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.

Two stone sarcophagi from the 2nd or 3rd centuries AD were discovered at the Ramat Gan Safari Park.

I share a bit about my work with photo collections, both past and future, in the latest Scholar’s Chair interview at Bible Archaeology Report.

Chris McKinny talks about learning historical geography and archaeology in Israel on a new video produced by John DeLancey.

Erez Ben Yosef is interviewed by the Jerusalem Post about his years of excavating at Timna.

Zoom lecture tomorrow: “Archaeology and the Hidden Religious Culture of Israelite Women,” by Carol Meyers.

The NY Times has posted an obituary for Norman Golb, the unorthodox Dead Sea Scrolls scholar who died last month.

Assyrians used the policy of deportation in the Levant not to bolster its labor supply but in order to intimidate the population and put down revolts.

The Hazor team is accepting applications for its 31st season of excavations at this important Canaanite and Israelite site.

The Times of Israel reports on the 2018 re-discovery in Cairo of a Hebrew Bible written in the year 1028.

Snow fell in Jerusalem this week for the first time in six years, and some photos are posted by The Jerusalem Post, Al Jazeera, Haaretz, and The Times of Israel. Shmuel Browns took some beautiful photos of the snow in the Judean hills. Daily Sabah has photos from around the Middle East.

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

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An Israeli soldier discovered a rare coin dating to AD 158 from the ancient city of Geva Phillip near Megiddo.

Israeli archaeologists recently re-discovered a dolmen in northern Galilee in a search inspired by the memoirs of Prince Albert and Prince George (later King George V). The underlying journal article is here.

A portion of the “altar site” on Mount Ebal has been destroyed by road construction work. Israel’s President has asked the Ministry of Defense to investigate.

King Manasseh’s reign is illuminated by archaeological discoveries, as Bryan Windle shows in his latest archaeological biography.

Barry Beitzel is interviewed about his background in biblical geography and his recent work on the Lexham Geographic Commentary series.

Tributes to Hershel Shanks have been shared by Suzanne Singer, Daniel Silliman, Aren Maeir, and the Washington Post. The full Shanks commemorative issue of BAR (from 2018) is now open to all, including kind words from Christopher Rollston and others.

Albright Virtual Workshop on Feb 22: “‘The loss of a minute is just so much loss of life’: Edward Robinson and Eli Smith in the Holy Land,” by Haim Goren.

Jonathan Robker gives some tips for finding and using digital resources related to biblical studies and material culture.

Registration is now open for Infusion Bible Conference (formerly The Institute of Biblical Context Conference), June 14-16, in Franklin, Tennessee.

HT: Agade, Alexander Schick, Arne Halbakken, Keith Keyser, Ted Weis, Explorator

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Archaeologists have found a ritual bath from the first century at the traditional site of the Garden of Gethsemane.

Palestinian farmers have discovered a Hasmonean fortress that can be explored but not excavated.

Archaeologists have recreated a realistic ancient floor from the courts of the Jerusalem temple in Herod’s day.

“A unique Byzantine-era blessing token featuring baby Jesus was recently unveiled by the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.”

A new study in dental calculus reveals that “that ancient Mediterranean civilizations were importing everything from chickens to black pepper and vanilla from as far away as India and Indonesia.”

“An olive press in ancient Yodfat, in northern Israel, sheds light on the role of olive oil in Jews’ lives 2,000 years ago” (Haaretz premium).

“Long Live King David” is a new 1-hour documentary featuring Israel Finkelstein, Yossi Garfinkel, and Eilat Mazar.

Rami Arav recently discussed a pair of spooning skeletons he excavated at et-Tell, a Geshurite city near biblical Bethsaida.

Aren Maeir shares photos from his recent visit to the Museum of the Philistine Culture in Ashdod.

Gideon Avni will be lecturing on Jan 6 at 5pm GMT by Zoom on “Jerusalem between Late Antiquity and Early Islam—The Creation of a Multicultural City.” An announcement is not yet posted online, but you can register at the email address on this page.

The Carta Jerusalem Bible Reference Collection (13 vols) for Logos Bible Software ships soon.

Recordings of 2020 lectures for the Anglo-Israel Archaeological Society are available on their website.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Explorator

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A seal impression of an official of King Jeroboam II has been discovered. It is a smaller version of the famous seal found at Megiddo in 1904 (and later lost).

An archaeologist has brought to light a menorah engraved in a Second Temple period tomb on the outskirts of Mukhmas (biblical Michmash), home of Jonathan the Hasmonean. The press release is here, and a journal article is available here.

Authorities are opening several new areas to visitors to Herodium, including the arched stairway, foyer, and private theater.

The underground excavations in Jerusalem took top prize for “Oddities of the Underground” at the International Tunneling and Underground Space Association Awards.

Israel21c photographs 10 eye-catching sculptures around Tel Aviv.

Wayne Stiles looks at traditional sites associated with Jesus’s flight to Egypt.

Bridges to the Bible has created their first series of videos, focusing on the communal culture of the biblical world.

Jerusalem University College will be hosting its first-ever online seminar on January 10 and 11. The event is free and open to the public.

Now available from ACOR (free pdfs): Archaeology in Jordan 2: 2018 and 2019 Seasons, edited by Pearce Paul Creasman, John D.M. Green, and China P. Shelton. This publication features over 50 reports on archaeological fieldwork, conservation initiatives, and publication projects in Jordan.

New: My Nine Lives: Sixty Years in Israeli and Biblical Archaeology, by William G. Dever

Favorably reviewed in the NY Times: A World Beneath the Sands: The Golden Age of Egyptology, by Toby Wilkinson.

Ferrell Jenkins has a lengthy, informative post about the problem of emperor worship faced by the seven churches in Revelation.

Leen Ritmeyer’s post on the synagogue of Capernaum includes a number of beautiful reconstruction drawings.

Wrapping up her long-distance internship with the PEF, Jade Dang explains how the maps of the Survey of Western Palestine provide a fascinating snapshot of history.

December is the perfect month for an archaeological biography on Herod the Great.

“Who Were the Maccabees, Really? Hannukah, the Hasmoneans and Jewish Memory,” A Conversation with Prof. Joseph Angel and Prof. Steven Fine, Dec 15, 11 am EST.

In asking why Jews today do not read a scroll for Hanukkah, David Golinkin recalls that historically the Scroll of Antiochus was read, but he proposes beginning a new custom by reading 1 Maccabees 1-4.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Ted Weis, Charles Savelle, Explorator

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Archaeologists working near Beit El have discovered an ancient play die dating to the Second Temple period.

Scholars continue to discuss whether Judean Pillar Figurines were depictions of Asherah, fertility figurines, apotropaic symbols, or something else.

An article in Discover Magazine looks at the religious motivations of some archaeological projects in the last century.

A Jewish arsonist attempted to set fire to the Church of All Nations at the Garden of Gethsemane.

Christianity Today interviews Christopher Rollston about forgeries of biblical antiquities.

Drawing on the research of Shmuel Safrai, Brad Gray explains the educational system in Jesus’s day.

Carl Rasmussen’s “Encountering the Holy Land” is now available on Apple TV, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, and Android TV.

Leen Ritmeyer has created a new image collection illustrating the Roman destruction of the Temple Mount.

HT: Joseph Lauer, Agade, Explorator, Charles Savelle

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