The Evidence of Foreign Lordship in Jerusalem

Archaeologists have found evidence of a Greek Fortress in Jerusalem.

For more than a decade, archeologists have been excavating a site in Jerusalem known as the Givati Parking Lot. This week, The Times of Israel reports, they have finally confirmed what they discovered: A citadel and tower that solve “one of the great archaeological riddles in the history of Jerusalem.” The site is believed to be a famous, 2,000-year-old Greek fortress, known as Acra, which played a key role in the Jewish revolts that inspired Hanukkah.


Radiocarbon Dating Khirbet Qeiyafa and the Iron I-IIA Phases in the Shephelah: Methodological Comments and a Bayesian Model

A new essay by I. Finkelstein and E. Piasetzky, in Radiocarbon 57 (2015), 891–907.

This article discusses methodological issues related to the radiocarbon dating of Khirbet Qeiyafa, mainly the question of whether the site should be dated solely according to samples retrieved there or dated as part of a regional sequence of stratigraphically based ceramic typology phases. For the latter, we deploy the large number of 14C determinations now available for several sites in the Shephelah, which are located in close proximity to each other, in order to establish a Bayesian model for the absolute chronology of the Iron I–IIA phases in the region. We argue that the information assembled from six neighboring sites in the Shephelah pushes forward the date of Qeiyafa to the 10th century, a date later than the one the excavators estimated based on the more limited 14C information from the site alone.

The more you know. Give it a read.  They also comment on a recent article by Faust and Katz on Tel Eton.

The World’s Oldest Alphabetic Inscription

A flake of limestone (ostracon) inscribed with an ancient Egyptian word list of the fifteenth century BC turns out to be the world’s oldest known abecedary. The words have been arranged according to their initial sounds, and the order followed here is one that is still known today. Ben Haring’ discovery (Leiden University)…

Antonio Lombatti