You are here

Biblical Archaeology Review, March/April 2009



The Wall That Nehemiah Built

By Eilat Mazar

Even before Nehemiah came from Babylonia to Jerusalem in the middle of the fifth century B.C.E., he knew that he wanted to rebuild the broken-down walls of Jerusalem (Nehemiah 1:3). When he arrived, he promptly made his famous night journey around the city, surveying...Read more ›

Double Identity

Orpheus as David. Orpheus as Christ?

By Jas’ Elsner

A splendid mosaic now in the Istanbul Archaeological Museum is said to portray Christ as Orpheus playing his lyre. A similar figure in a synagogue mosaic discovered in Gaza in the 1960s—resembling the traditional form of Orpheus but labeled “David”—may be thought to support...Read more ›

Rare Magic Inscription on Human Skull

By Dan Levene

Not long ago, the well-known collector Shlomo Moussaieff acquired two earthenware bowls, the open ends of which were adjoined to form a kind of case—inside the case was an ancient human skull. A magic incantation, written in Aramaic, was inscribed on the skull. BAR readers already know...Read more ›

A Tiny Piece of the Puzzle

Six-Letter Inscription Suggests Monumental Building of Hezekiah

By Hershel Shanks

Ancient Jerusalem sometimes reveals itself in little bits. In this case, it is a tiny inscription with only six letters preserved. So little remains of ancient Israel in the City of David (the 12-acre ridge where the oldest inhabited part of Jerusalem is located) because later...Read more ›