The former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams has called for a fresh examination of the Jordanian Codices, a series of about 50 metal books variously described as a key find in Biblical archaeology and a crude fake, after tests showed they were not made from modern lead.
When the discovery of the codices, allegedly in a cave in northern Jordan, was announced in 2011, some compared it to the unearthing of the Dead Sea Scrolls, a collection of texts dating as far back as the 4th century BC, in the West Bank from 1946.
But many academics say the supposedly early Christian codices are forgeries, with Dr Peter Thonemann, an Oxford classicist, describing the books as “moderately ingenious tourist tat”.
Tourist tat is complimentary. They’re rubbish. And they’ve been known to be rubbish for years. All you would want to know about the rubbish things you can find here.