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Biblical Archaeology Review, May/June 2004


Special Section

Ossuary Update

Lying Scholars?

Rumor, Gossip and Misinformation Swirl around the James Ossuary Inscription

By Hershel Shanks

Intense scholarly disagreements are common in archaeology. Cases of deliberate lying, however, are rare. Is this such a case? If so, what is the motive? When I returned from the Annual Meetingsa in Atlanta last November, I penned my customary report for publication in...Read more ›

Ossuary Update

The Trial of Oded Golan

State of Israel vs. Oded Golan—You Be the Judge

This is the imaginary trial of Oded Golan, the Tel Aviv antiquities collector who owns the ossuary, or bone box, inscribed “James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus.” He is charged with forging the inscription. You be the judge (there are no juries in Israel): Don’t assume...Read more ›


Temple Mount Excavations Unearth the Monastery of the Virgins

By Eilat Mazar

For ten years, between 1968 and 1978, the area south of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem was intensively excavated by archaeologist Benjamin Mazar.1 His many spectacular discoveries included the remains of a monumental staircase that led up to the southern enclosure wall of the...Read more ›

Four-Horned Altar Discovered in Judean Hills

By Yoel ElitzurDoron Nir-Zevi

We are what the outside world calls “settlers.” We live in the West Bank, but refer to it by its Biblical names, Judea and Samaria. I (Yoel) live in Ophrah, about 10 miles from the ancient site of Shiloh. Ophrah was established in 1975, the first Jewish...Read more ›



The DaVinci Code

Reviewed by Ben Witherington III

O Jerusalem

Jerusalem in Original Photographs 1850–1920

Reviewed by Michael R. Shurkin


Gandhara, Pakistan