Biblical Archaeology Review 14:6, November/December 1988

Books in Brief

Nabatean Archaeology Today

Avraham Negev (New York: New York Univ. Press, 1986) 155 pp., 66 illustrations, $50.00.a

The Nabateans, a bedouin group that occupied ancient Petra late in the fourth century B.C., became the greatest commercial power in the Near East during the Roman period. By the first century A.D., they controlled over a thousand sites along the great caravan routes west of the Jordan River and in southern Palestine. Much has been written concerning their capital city of Petra. Now the work of Avraham Negev fills in the story in the western region.

In this short, readable and informative volume, Dr. Negev draws on his long experience excavating Nabatean sites in Israel. He discusses the history and chronology of the Nabateans, the development of their architecture and movement toward urbanization, their burial customs and social structure, and concludes with a section on the later Nabatean period in the Negev desert and Sinai.

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