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Biblical Archaeology Review, May/June 2003


Special Section

Assessing the Jehoash Inscription

The Paleographer: Demonstrably a Forgery

By Hershel Shanks

Was it too good to be true? In recent months, the world learned of an inscribed tablet apparently written by Jehoash, the ninth-century B.C.E. king of Judah. But almost immediately, questions were raised about its authenticity. After examining the text of The Jehoash Inscription, Frank Moore Cross,...Read more ›

Assessing the Jehoash Inscription

The Linguist: Hebrew Philology Spells Fake

By Edward L. Greenstein

The language of The Jehoash Inscription is fake. It is not idiomatic ancient Hebrew but rather a perversion of it. If authentic, it would be a phenomenal find. But clearly it is not a genuine artifact. To be declared authentic, any inscription that has not been excavated...Read more ›

Assessing the Jehoash Inscription

Fool The Experts

Make a convincing fake and win $10,000!

Object: To make a facsimile of The Jehoash Inscription that will fool the experts. The recently disclosed Jehoash Inscription has divided the scholarly world. If it is authentic, it would be the first royal Israelite inscription ever found. Some experts, primarily epigraphers and linguists, are sure it...Read more ›


Mounds of Mystery

Where the Kings of Judah Were Lamented

By Gabriel Barkay

At the beginning of the 20th century, when Jerusalem, still centered around its ancient core, was surrounded by agricultural land and orchards, 20 mysterious earth-and-stone mounds rose above the city’s western horizon, clearly visible from afar. Today several of them have disappeared, flattened by excavation or by...Read more ›

Spending Your Way through Jewish History

Ancient Judean Coins Tell Their Story

By Sandy Brenner

Coins, ancient and modern, facilitate the flow of commerce. But their usefulness does not end there. Coins are also effective tools of mass communication—to disseminate propaganda. This was especially important in the ancient world, before television or even the printing press. Thanks to this second role, coins...Read more ›



What Did the Biblical Writers Know & When Did They Know It? What Archaeology Can Tell Us about the Reality of Ancient Israel

Reviewed by Ilan Sharon


Nimrud, Iraq