They’re ‘Excavating’ [Sic!] in Kentucky for the Ark…

A bit of fun poking double entendre in the title of the post concerning the story here…

Workers are clearing land in northern Kentucky to build a long-stalled tourist attraction featuring Noah’s Ark.

Ken Ham, head of the Christian ministry Answers in Genesis, posted video of the excavation work on his Facebook page this week.

It is the first sign of large-scale construction activity at the site in Grant County since plans for the 510-foot long biblical ark were announced by Answers in Genesis in 2010. The project had been delayed when private donations did not keep pace with the construction timeline.

“They’re doing all the site work now to get the spot ready,” Michael Zovath, the project’s coordinator, said Thursday. Zovath said heavy machinery will eventually push away about a million cubic feet of earth and rock to make way for the 200-acre ark site and parking lot.

Oh.  Boy.  Just think how many out of work academics can serve as tour guides!!!!!!  Take heart recent grads, you can work for Ham!

Maybe in 50 Years the Person who Inscribed the ‘James’ Ossuary Will Come Forward as Well…

The mysterious rune stone that disappeared from the shores of Pojac Point, strangely resurfaced and has been concealed under lock and key, now adds another chapter to its odd tale.  Plans to put it on public display in Updike Park were suspended after a Providence man said he carved the runic letters in 1964.  Adding to the whodunit is the fact that people who lived near the stone in the 1950s say they remember seeing the carvings before 1964.

The enigmatic stone, sometimes called the Narragansett Rune Stone or Quidnessett Rock, is a 6-ton, 7-foot-long boulder that came to public attention in 1984, when a quahogger noticed its carved symbols, visible only at low tide. Archaeologists, geologists and historians have debated whether it is evidence of Viking exploration. Disappearing from Pojac Point in June 2012, causing a dispute among neighbors, it was recovered by the attorney general’s office in April 2013, and kept under wraps at the University of Rhode Island. Experts, one from as far away as Sweden, have studied it, and the state Department of Environmental Management was planning to display it in the park.

Everett Brown, 63, of Providence, has added another layer to the story, coming forward to say that he carved the Norse-like letters 50 years ago.

Fraud.  Ain’t it glorious…  Maybe the guy who inscribed the ‘James Ossuary will come forward one day too.

The Ignorant Cohort of Elkingtons Are Still Trying to Convince the World that The ‘Lead Codices’ Are Important

 

They’ve gone full bore PR campaign to do it in an ignorance laced ‘interview’ which is nothing more than a poorly framed parade example of pseudo-scholarship.

The ‘International Times’ must have been paid a lot of money for the ‘privilege’ of publishing this rapaciously senseless ‘interview’.  You’ll enjoy it.  Especially if you are a biblioblogger.  The Elkington’s don’t like you at all.  But probably only because you’re putting a dent in their chances of selling their ‘product’.

If you want one of these little trinkets, next time you’re in Jordan, you can pick up a dozen.  Easily.  And then you can try to pimp them too.  But be sure to be mad at anyone who questions your ‘scholarship’.

With thanks to Jim Aitken for telling me about the farcical nonsense.

Yay! More Archaeological Use of Jesus Without any Evidence!

For the Rev. Juan M. Solana, it was the spiritual equivalent of striking oil.  When he set out to develop a resort for Christian pilgrims in Galilee, he unearthed a holy site: the presumed hometown of Mary Magdalene and an ancient synagogue where experts say Jesus may well have taught. The project, which Father Solana, a Roman Catholic priest, describes as “providential,” will be blessed by Pope Francis during his visit to the Holy Land this month.

Yay!  Now if only they could also connect the site to Abraham and Jacob and Joshua and Moses they’d have it made.  They could erect all sorts of ‘Jesus slept here’ signs and tell tourists anything they liked because without contradictory evidence they will be believed.  Even with contradictory evidence, or as the case is presently, no evidence at ALL, they’ll still be believed.

Poor Jesus.  He’s used to sell more stuff than anyone else.

Oded Gets His Fake Back

jehoashAn inscribed stone that may be the only remnant of Solomon’s Temple has been returned to its owner after an 11-year legal battle waged by the Israeli government.

So Matthew Kalman, referring to the return to Oded Golan of his fake, patently fake, obviously fake, tremendously fake fraudulent ‘Jehoash Tablet’.

I hope he sells it to a gullible collector for 80 bazillion dollars and the collector travels the world showing it off at shows where films by Simcha Jacobovici play on monitors in loud surround sound and visitors are separated from their hard earned money to the tune of $100 a pop.  That would be a fitting fate for the fake.  And for all those people ignorant enough to bow at the altar of fraud.

Maybe Harvard Theological Review will publish an essay on it too, in which the author of the piece defends the authenticity of the holy relic in spite of the fact that there’s not one scintilla of evidence anywhere at all that the thing is authentic and anything other than a forgery.  That would be the icing on the cake.

A Guest Post – By Joe Zias: “A Dummies Guide to Koshering Forged Antiquities”

A Dummies Guide to Koshering Forged Antiquities

This whole sad “Jesus wife ” papyrus affair reminds me of an incident in Ein Gedi a few years back. A high ranking official from the IAA where I had been employed, visited the on-going excavations there and the archaeologist, excitedly showed him an amulet with Jewish symbols found in-situ, earlier that day. The experienced excavator was thinking of calling a press conference to announce the find. Fortunately, cooler heads prevailed and the official from the IAA showed him, despite the fact that it was found in-situ, it had been planted and was a modern day forgery. The question now becomes why? Well as I’ve said time and time again, ‘we’ve seen this movie before’ in that the forger will wait until after the forged artifact is shown in a press conference, with the archaeologist believing that as it was found in-situ, it was authentic, thus giving it his seal of approval. Sooner or later, identical amulets will appear on the dealers shelves or as with what happens with high end items, there are always buyers waiting in line to purchase these finds, bypassing the market. I, in fact, was once approached by an individual who asked me to ‘plant’/salt an ostraca in an excavation in which Yadin had excavated. That ‘2,000 year old’ zinc coffin lid found in Qumran, coated with modern day paint to prevent corrosion, is but another example in which items are salted into a dig.

I have this uneasy feeling that Professor King, may have been unwittingly duped into such a transaction and it would just be a matter of time before a few more similar fragments would turn up on the market, as we have seen with those Jordanian lead codices. We’re dealing with highly sophisticated forgers, which it would appear have assistance from academically trained scholars.

Perhaps no field is immune to forgery as when it comes to amber studies, in which amber is melted down and modern day insects are embedded in the new amber which is difficult to tell, unless one takes the item to an entomologist who can readily discern a modern fly from one in antiquity. One of the EU labs producing these fakes eventually hired a university trained entomologist whose task was to change or remove those morphological features in which one could easily determine if the insect was recently embedded or ancient, thus removing tell tale signs of forgery. It eventually ended up in the courts when a US university challenged their right to do such, and the lab producing these forged items replied, ‘it’s no ones business what we do’.

Anything, you see, can be made kosher if the right ‘expert’ is at work.