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Archaeologists working in the temple of Amenhotep III in Luxor have discovered remains of a pair of gigantic limestone colossi.

“A joint Egyptian-Italian Mission excavating near Aswan in Egypt has discovered a tomb from the Greco-Roman period containing twenty mummies.”

“Scientists found the first recorded example of a bandaged wound on a mummified body, which could offer more insight into ancient medical practices.”

“Scholars have concluded that King Tutankhamun was not murdered, after a lengthy investigation that seemed to refute popular theory.”

Joshua Berman says that marks of Egyptian culture in the Torah give evidence of the Israelites’ sojourn in Egypt.

Deb Hurn argues that the meteoric airburst theory for the destruction of Tall al-Hammam does not match various details in the biblical text for the destruction of Sodom.

The world’s largest mosaic is now open to the public underneath the newly built Antakya Museum Hotel (in biblical Antioch on the Orontes).

“A new study has revealed that some 4,500 years ago the ancient Mesopotamians were the first to create a hybrid animal, producing an entirely new beast by mating two different species.”

New technology is allowing scientists to better determine the sex of ancient skeletons.

Candida Moss writes about the relationship that ancient Romans had with their dogs.

A Hellenistic necropolis near Naples is opening to the public for the first time.

Nimes is my favorite Roman city in France, and National Geographic reviews some of the highlights.

Michael Shutterly has written a brief guide to the coins of the Persian kings.

Carl Rasmussen shares photos of what’s new at Laodicea—“a two hundred foot long, 25 foot high Frescoed Wall.”

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Explorator, Arne Halbakken

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Israel’s Good Name reports on his tour of four sites in the Nahal Tirzah area, including a possible site for Gilgal and a Roman army camp.

“People may find it hard to believe that tiny little Israel has more than 300 wineries,” with more than 50 in the foothills between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.

Foreign tourists are again allowed in Israel, and John DeLancey is posting daily updates about his group’s travels.

With the celebration of his 200th anniversary around the corner, Conrad Schick’s work in Jerusalem is highlighted by Bible History Daily. The article also notes that Shirley Graetz is working on a historical novel about Schick’s life.

Les and Kathy Bruce are leading an English/Spanish tour of Israel in April/May, and a Turkey/Greece tour in May.

Susan Laden and Rob Sugar share about the impact of Suzanne Singer on Biblical Archaeology Review.

New in paperback: Children in the Bible and the Ancient World Comparative and Historical Methods in Reading Ancient Children, edited by Shawn W. Flynn.

Zoom lecture on Jan 26: “The Roman Army in the Negev,” by Alexandra Ratzlaff ($7).

Jerusalem Seminary has announced its spring course offerings, including courses on the “Life and Land of Yeshua,” “Jewish Life and Literature,” and “Faith, Politics and Ministry.” The description and the various instructors in that last course look particularly interesting to me. You can see the full list here.

The latest free maps from Bible Mapper include:

Emanuel Hausman, founder of Carta Jerusalem Publishing House, died this week.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Explorator, Arne Halbakken

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A new study suggests that the mining operations in the Timna Valley and Faynan thrived in the 10th century because of good management. The underlying journal article is here.

Moshe Gilad wonders whether the Bible can be used as an archaeological travel guide to Israel, and his article in Haaretz is based on the responses of Israel Finkelstein, Aren Maeir, and Yoram Bilu.

Saul Jay Singer writes about the life of Yigael Yadin and his father Eliezer Sukenik.

A couple of scholars are suggesting that Mary Magdalene was not from Magdala. (Now seems to be the perfect time for such a proposal, with all the great finds coming out of 1st-century Magdala…) The underlying journal article is here.

Questions have been raised about artifacts in the Israel Museum that were donated by Michael Steinhardt.

John DeLancey and Kyle Keimer complete their four-part tour of the archaeological wing of the Israel Museum.

The Museum of the Bible and Digital Interactive Virtual Experiences are offering virtual tours of Caesarea on January 20 and Qumran on January 27.

The materials in the Israel Film Archive are now online for public viewing. The Times of Israel identifies some highlights.

Andrew Lawler is on The Times of Israel podcast talking about his recent book, Under Jerusalem. (I enjoyed the book, and I hope to say more later.)

The Jerusalem Post reviews Adventure Girl: Dabi Digs in Israel, an illustrated book for children.

Israel’s Good Name reports on his trek around Horvat Hanut and Salvatio Abbey.

The 200th anniversary of the birth of Conrad Schick is on January 27, and Christ Church in Jerusalem will be having a special event to celebrate on the 28th (10:00-13:00). Their museum includes some of Schick’s models, including the one pictured below.

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Arne Halbakken, Wayne Stiles, Alexander Schick

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Model of Conrad Schick on display at Christ Church, Jerusalem. Photo by Michael Schneider.

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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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Excavations revealed an ancient synagogue in Side near Antalya (biblical Attalia), a city where Paul preached, albeit six centuries after his visit.

“A team of researchers has successfully digitally unwrapped the mummified body of the pharaoh Amenhotep I, who lived around 3,500 years ago.”

Mark Boslough claims that the Sodom cosmic airburst theory has significant shortcomings.

108-year-old Sumerologist credits Istanbul museum for long career.”

“A digital model of Babylon is under development.”

Virtual workshop on January 11 at the Albright Institute: The Religious Soundscape of the Holy Land: From the Crusades to the Late Ottoman Empire

Webinar on January 20: “The Not-So-Innocents Abroad: The Beginnings of American Biblical Archaeology,” by Rachel Hallote

Carl Rasmussen writes about an anchor stock at Malta with the name of an Egyptian deity on it.

John DeLancey and Kyle Keimer give a virtual tour of highlights in the archaeological wing of the Israel Museum (part 1 of 4).

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

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Marine archaeologists working near Caesarea have discovered a gold ring with a green gemstone depicting the “Good Shepherd,” a red gemstone depicting a lyre, and a hoard of Roman coins. A 2-minute video announcing the discoveries has been produced by the IAA.

“New research suggests that the Roman prefect Pontius Pilate is the one that built the Biar Aqueduct, the most sophisticated ancient aqueduct of the Jerusalem area” and the main one supplying Solomon’s Pools (Haaretz premium). The underlying journal article is available on Academia.

“Archaeologists say discovery at Tel Tsaf in the Jordan Valley is first known instance of alcohol being imbibed inside a community in the ancient Middle East.”

Authorities found the lid of a Roman sarcophagus in a garbage dump in Ashkelon.

The Jerusalem Post runs a brief story on the legend of the ark of the covenant being brought to Ethiopia.

The Biblical Zoo in Jerusalem has added a number of new programs and educational opportunities in the last year.

This Week in the Ancient Near East podcast: “Even More New Amazing Iron Age Finds from a Cult Site West of Jerusalem, or, To Gaze Upon the Knees of God”

A recent video of the Temple Mount shows the interior of the Golden Gate now furnished as a mosque.

The Conversation provides an explainer on what it is like to volunteer on an archaeological excavation.

The second episode in the “State of Jerusalem” miniseries by The Times of Israel looks at the Christian community in the city.

The Israeli government has again cancelled Christmas in the Holy Land for most, but not all, tourists.

Chris McKinny and Kyle Keimer discuss the history and archaeology of Christmas on the Biblical World podcast.

Andy Cook at Experience Israel Now has created a two-part special entitled “The Journey to Christmas.” Part One came out a few days ago, and Part Two will be released tomorrow. The videos include drone footage of the route that Joseph and Mary took from Nazareth to Bethlehem.

We’ll have a part 2 for this roundup on Sunday.

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

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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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