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Researchers investigating a perfectly circular structure submerged under the Sea of Galilee are considering a possible connection to the tomb of Aqhat in Ugaritic mythology. The underlying journal article is here.

Mark Hoffman writes about the new “Timelapse in Google Earth,” with a couple of suggested views to check out.

Chris McKinny is on the Out of Zion podcast discussing the biblical and geographical backgrounds related to crossing the Jordan River.

Wendy Slaninka continues the fascinating story of her grandfather, James Leslie Starkey, excavator of Lachish.

Sudarsan Raghavan writes about the latest discoveries at Saqqara for the Washington Post.

“Pharaonic history provides us with well-documented cases of condemnation of the memory of specific individuals – what we today call damnatio memoriae.”

A project using artificial intelligence has determined that the Great Isaiah Scroll was written by two scribes, not one (Times of Israel, Jerusalem Post, Haaretz premium, journal article).

New: Babylon: The Great City, by Olof Pedersén (Zaphon, 2021). Available in hardcover (44 €) and pdf (free).

HT: Agade, Joseph Lauer, Arne Halbakken, Ferrell Jenkins, Keith Keyser, Explorator, G. M. Grena

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Tutku Educational Travel has a number of terrific tours planned in the latter half of 2021 and on through 2022. I’ve traveled with Tutku several times in the past, and my university is a regular partner with them for our student tours, and so I like to recommend them to others looking for great tours with the best instructors. You can get the full run-down of upcoming trips on the Tutku website, but I wanted to recommend and highlight six in particular:

Open to all:

For faculty and pastors (with discount):

You can see the full list of biblical tours here.

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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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Yesterday, 22 ancient Egyptian royal mummies were paraded through Cairo on their way to the new museum.

D. Clint Burnett discusses various references to inscriptions in the New Testament as well as the value of inscriptions in interpreting the New Testament and early Christianity.

Modern development and looting is taking its toll on the ancient Greek city of Cyrene in Libya.

The Times Insider column looks back into references to Moshe Shapira in The New York Times in the late 1800s.

Webinar on April 14: “Why Pottery Matters: Judean Storage Jars and the Qumran Sect,” by Jodi Magness (Zoom link)

Webinar on April 15: “A Toast to Ancient Greek Wine Drinking,” with Kathleen Lynch

Webinar on April 18 sponsored by the Friends of ASOR: “Archaeogaming: Why Video Games Deserve Their Own Archaeology.”

Webinar on April 22: John Curtis and his fellow curators give an overview of the soon-to-open Epic Iran exhibit in London.

Mark Wilson’s presentation on Hierapolis for the Tutku Guide Seminar is now online. He is followed on the same video by Mark Fairchild’s presentation on Paul’s little-known ministry in Cilicia.

“The online edition of the Amarna Letters aims to make transliterations, translations, and glossaries of the letters and administrative texts available to both scholars and the wider public.” The letters to and from the Levant, excluding Phoenicia, are now available.

Free download until April 13: Migration Myths and the End of the Bronze Age in the Eastern Mediterranean, by A. Bernard Knapp, published by Cambridge University Press.

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

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A well-preserved Roman arena, partially buried and hidden by vegetation, has been discovered in the ancient city of Mastaura, in Western Turkey.

A new study suggests it only took fifteen minutes after the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius for the city of Pompeii to be engulfed in its lethal plume.

The ancient Diolkos of Corinth is being restored. The stone-paved road was once used for transporting ships across the isthmus. The well-illustrated article includes a video showing the Diolkos in operation.

Restoration work has begun at Alexandria, Egypt, on the sea wall, lighthouse, and ancient bridge.

NewScientist has a brief report on the excavations of Berenike, ancient Egypt’s southernmost port.

The NY Times has a feature on the forgotten pyramids of Sudan, with some beautiful photos.

BBC: “Kelly Grovier explores how images depicting a staged lion hunt were used to proclaim a king’s greatness.”

Webinar on April 12 and 13: “Jehu’s Tribute: What Can Biblical Studies Offer Assyriology?” Free registration is required.

Now online: The Archaeological Gazetteer of Iran: An Online Encyclopedia of Iranian Archaeological Sites, a free open-access online encyclopedia maintained by UCLA.

Ancient Iran: A Digital Platform provides various resources including timeline, maps, teaching tools, and photos.

The Louvre announced it now has more than half a million objects from its collection available to view online. The museum has hundreds of important objects related to biblical history.

Mark Wilson is on The Book and the Spade discussing the latest excavations at Laodicea, including an alleged house church.

“For Israelis, this year, Passover marks a celebration of freedom from virus.”

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

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Archaeologists working in Egypt’s Western Desert have discovered a monastery complex dating to the 4th to 8th centuries.

Twenty-two royal Egyptian mummies are set to be transferred to the National Museum of Egyptian Civilisation (NMEC) in a much-awaited parade in the streets of Cairo on 3 April.”

King Tut’s war shield has been restored so that it may be displayed to the public for the first time.

A small bronze bull was discovered after a rainfall near the temple of Zeus in Olympia.

Dimitris Tsalkanis describes his goals in creating “Ancient Athens 3D,” a collection of hundreds of digital models from seven historical periods from 1200 BC to AD 1833.

Some people are not happy with the proposal to loosen governmental control over five major museums in Greece.

There are a number of similarities between the chariot recently discovered chariot near Pompeii and five chariots discovered in Greece in 2002.

A beautiful, long-lost mosaic that once adorned a ship belonging to Caligula has found its way into an Italian museum.

A collection of 24 studies by Cyrus H. Gordon, published in a variety of books and journals between 1933 and 1982, have been compiled in pdf format by Robert Bedrosian.

In response to Peter J. Parr, Aren Maeir explains why preliminary reports and prompt publication of excavation results are essential.

HT: Agade, Arne Halbakken, Ted Weis, Alexander Schick, Explorator, Steven Anderson

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