Biblical Archaeology Review 42:5, September/October 2016

Strata: The Head of All Those Papers

Hazor was a powerhouse in the Bronze Age. Called “the head of all those kingdoms” in Joshua 11:10, Hazor ruled over the surrounding countryside and people groups. Perhaps not surprisingly, Hazor is the largest archaeological site in the Land of Israel.

Excavations at Hazor have yielded lots of pottery. Shlomit Bechar, the winner of the 2016 Sean W. Dever Memorial Prize, examines one particular type of pottery—Black Wheel-Made Ware (BWMW)—uncovered at Hazor in her winning paper, “A Reanalysis of the Black Wheel-Made Ware of the Intermediate Bronze Age,” which was published in Tel Aviv 42 (2015). According to Bechar, Hazor played a major role in the distribution and consumption of BWMW. Despite previous claims that these vessels were imported from Syria, she suggests that they were only influenced by the Syrian vessels.

Shlomit Bechar is a Ph.D. candidate at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Her M.A. thesis dealt with the architecture and pottery of Intermediate Bronze Age Hazor. Her Ph.D. dissertation deals with the relation between historical events and material culture—with the transition from the Middle Bronze Age to the Late Bronze Age in northern Israel used as a test case.

Bechar has been an area supervisor at Tel Hazor since 2007 and has recently joined Professor Amnon Ben-Tor as Field Director of the excavations. She is working on the publication of the Bronze Age acropolis of Hazor, as well as the publication of the renewed excavations in the Lower City of Hazor.

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