Did David rule a powerful kingdom, as the Bible would have us believe? Or was the so-called kingdom merely a small tribal entity? Prof. Yossi Garfinkel claims his dig at Khirbet Qeiyafa supports the biblical story, but other archaeologists treat his conclusions with scorn.
Garfinkel may well be right but on the other hand he may well be making a suit out of a button.
The only thing archaeologists agree on is that the Khirbet Qeiyafa site is an extremely impressive and intriguing site. Apart from that, everything is open to debate. Prof. Israel Finkelstein of Tel Aviv University, who in the early 1990s was among the archaeologists who formulated the view that the Bible narratives have no significant historical foundation, says he is far from convinced that the site Garfinkel is excavating was part of the House of David in the Judean Hills rather than a Philistine or Canaanite settlement. Even if it did belong to the Kingdom of Judah, he says, he does not think it reinforces the notion of a developed kingdom in the Davidic period. His colleague from Tel Aviv University, the historian Prof. Nadav Na’aman, points out that although most of the data about the site have not yet been published, “the proposition that the site is related to the center in Jerusalem seems highly improbable.”
So the fun continues! Enjoy the whole essay.
- Archaeological War Over David (zwingliusredivivus.wordpress.com)
- Gershon Galil: On the Khirbet Qeiyafa Inscription (zwingliusredivivus.wordpress.com)
- Israel Finkelstein: In the Eye of Jerusalem (zwingliusredivivus.wordpress.com)
- Yuval Goren on the ‘War in the World of Archaeology’ (zwingliusredivivus.wordpress.com)