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“Archaeologists believe that a 2,300-year-old jar from Ancient Greece containing the bones of a dismembered chicken was likely used as part of a curse to paralyze and kill 55 people in Athens.”

“A multinational team of archaeologists and scientists is reassessing the history of sea-level change in the Eastern Mediterranean based on underwater excavation and photogrammetry at sites on Israel’s Carmel coast.”

“An Egyptian archaeological mission is preparing to launch an excavation project in Saudi Arabia after several discoveries showed that ancient Egyptian King Ramses III had a presence in the Arabian Peninsula.”

Turkish Archaeological News has a roundup of stories from the month of May.

“The Covid-19 pandemic, however, has offered these thieves new opportunities to raid closed archeological sites, churches and museums [in Italy] for priceless artifacts while police are reassigned to enforce lockdowns.”

First discovered in 2015, a cache of Roman coins dating from 200 BCE to 27 BCE are now on display at the Santa Maria della Scala Museum in Siena, Italy.

A replica of Noah’s Ark has been deemed unseaworthy and is prohibited from leaving port.

Charles Aling is on The Book and the Spade discussing “Post-Exodus Disruptions in Egypt.”

Carl Rasmussen shares photos from “The Grotto of Paul” at Ephesus, including ancient paintings of Paul and Thecla.

If you’ll be at the Infusion Bible Conference this week, stop by the BiblePlaces table and say hi to Kris Udd and me. I haven’t had a chance to meet many roundup readers this past year, but our team has used the time to create some great new photo collections.

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

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Joshua Berman and Ari Zivotofsky reject the recent study that ancient Judeans ate non-kosher fish because they had no knowledge of the Torah.

About 250 rock-cut tombs from the Old Kingdom to the Ptolemaic period have been discovered in Egypt’s Eastern Desert.

“Saudi Arabia is seeking Greek expertise in archaeological excavation for its nascent cultural sector.”

Sinkholes are a growing problem in Rome due to ancient and medieval tunnels.

The curatorial team behind the Epic Iran exhibition give an overview of the show ahead of its opening.

In the latest episode of the Biblical World podcast, Mary Buck and Chris McKinny discuss Ugarit and possible connections to the Old Testament.

Ariel M. Bagg reviews the history of Neo-Assyrian historical geography, leading up to the recent publication of the final volumes of the Répertoire Géographique des Textes Cunéiformes (Geographical Register of Cuneiform Texts).

Returning to his series on the seven churches, Ferrell Jenkins focuses on the church at Sardis, with a number of beautiful photos.

Bryan Windle’s top three archaeological reports of the month all come from the New Testament era.

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

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“A team of archaeologists in north-west the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has uncovered the earliest evidence of dog domestication by the region’s ancient inhabitants.”

“Italian art police recovered a 1st century Roman statue that had been looted from an archaeological site nearly a decade ago after off-duty officers spotted it in an antique shop in Belgium.”

Rebekah Welton looks at excessive and deviant consumption in the Bible, particularly with reference to the rebellious son in Deuteronomy 21.

Now online: “Learning historical geography and archaeology in Israel with Chris McKinny, Part 4.”

Webinar on April 18: “Will the Real Bar Kochba Please Stand Up,” with Isaiah Gafni.

Webinar on April 21: “The Queens of Ancient Nimrud,” with Amy Gansell and Helen Malko.

Webinar on April 29: “Pandemics in Antiquity and Beyond,” with Kyle Harper, Calloway Brewster Scott, and Hunter Gardener.

Virtual workshop on May 4: “Listening To and Learning From Children in the Biblical World,” hosted by the Albright Institute.

NYU Skirball Department of Hebrew and Judaic Studies is sponsoring a 4-day virtual conference, “The Dead Sea Scrolls: A Second Public Conference” on June 6-9.

New book: Jerusalem II: Jerusalem in Roman-Byzantine Times, edited by Katharina Heyden and Maria Lissek, published by Mohr Siebeck, €154.

HT: Agade, Keith Keyser, Alexander Schick, Arne Halbakken, Charles Savelle

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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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Archaeologists discovered a massive gateway near Persepolis that was built by Cyrus in honor of the conquest of Babylon.

A large-scale production brewery was found in Abydos, Egypt.

“The discovery of a rare ‘mud mummy’ from ancient Egypt has surprised archaeologists, who weren’t expecting to find the deceased encased in a hardened mud shell.

A CT study indicates that Pharaoh Seqenenre Taa II (558-1553 BC) died on the battlefield.

A researcher studied tomb reliefs and conducted dozens of experiments in order to discover how the ancient Egyptians baked bread.

A UNESCO jobs program is helping to restore Byzantine sites in Jordan.

Carl Rasmussen shares photos of Aizanoi in Turkey, where one of the best-preserved temples of the ancient world is located.

Greece Is lists the top 10 archaeological finds in Greece in 2020.

The Paphos Archaeological Museum in Cyprus has reopened after four years of renovations and delays.

Smithsonian Magazine: Iraq’s Cultural Museum in Mosul is on the road to recovery.

“The Encyclopædia Iranica Online is now freely accessible at Brill’s Reference Works Platform.”

5,000 photographs of Arabia taken by Sir Wilfred Thesiger between 1945 and 1950 have been digitized by the Pitt Rivers Museum.

“Excavating the History of the Bible: What Archeology Can Teach us About the Biblical World”—hosted by Dr. Andrew Mark Henry has launched on YouTube. The first episode provides an intro to biblical archaeology. The second is on the Canaanites.

A rare snowstorm covered Athens and its acropolis with several inches of snow.

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

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Two female statues from the 4th century BC have been discovered near the Athens airport.

The removal of two millennia of detritus has revealed the beautiful colors of the temple of Esna.

More than 13 types of inscriptions from various civilizations are known in the Arabian Peninsula.

The Antiquarium at Pompeii has now been reopened permanently.

A remorseful thief returned some fake coins he stole from the Paestum museum.

National Geographic has a feature on what may have been the Roman empire’s most enduring contribution: a road network covering more than 200,000 miles.

CSNTM has announced a brand new manuscript viewer.

Smithsonian Magazine: Who Invented the Alphabet?

Judeans in Babylonia: A Study of Deportees in the Sixth and Fifth Centuries BCE, by Tero Alstola, published by Brill in 2019 in Culture and History of the Ancient Near East series. Available for free as a pdf.

Reviewed: Libraries before Alexandria: Ancient Near Eastern Traditions, by Kim Ryholt and Gojko Barjamovic.

Sinclair Hood, best known for his excavation of the Minoan Palace of Knossos, has died just shy of his 104th birthday.

I join John DeLancey to talk about the Top 10 Archaeological Discoveries of 2020. This interview builds on a list I wrote, but with added commentary and a few photos.

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

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