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Peter in Rome
Every year millions of Christian pilgrims converge on the Vatican, the heart of Catholic Christendom, and its vast basilica bearing the apostle Peter’s name. The church, visitors are told, marks the site of Peter’s tomb. According to long-...
Bible Review, February 2004
Nahman Avigad: In Memoriam
Nahman Avigad was born in the Galician town of Zawalow (then in Austria, now in the Ukraine), on September 25, 1905, the son of Isak and Perl Reiss. He died at age 86 in Jerusalem on January 28, 1992. His childhood and schooling took place in...
Biblical Archaeology Review, May/June 1992
How To Find Your True Love
Are you single and looking for your true love? Someone thought the conference I recently attended at Oxford was the answer: Radiocarbon dating was the way to find the perfect match...
Biblical Archaeology Review, January/February 2005
Rejected! Qeiyafa’s Unlikely Second Gate
Excavations at Khirbet Qeiyafa have uncovered a second city gate from the 10th century B.C.E., the time of King David’s reign. No other site from this period has more than one gate. What do Qeiyafa’s two city gates tell us about the Kingdom of Judah in David’s time?
Biblical Archaeology Review, January/February 2017
How to Find the Hazor Archives (I Think)
Biblical Hazor was the largest and most important royal city in the southern Levant in the second millennium B.C.E. Its continuing exploration has brought to light impressive architecture and unique objects. But, one major discovery remains elusive: Where are Hazor’s cuneiform archives?
Biblical Archaeology Review, March/April 2017
The Hasmonean Kings: Jewish or Hellenistic?
The Jewish dynasty of Hasmoneans ruled Judea for more than a century in the Late Hellenistic period. Their palaces, excavated in Jericho, reveal a great deal about how they lived. But what do the palace architecture and pottery tell us about the delicate balance the Hasmonean rulers tried to strike when projecting the power, wealth, and authority—both secular and religious—of their independent Jewish state to their Jewish subjects and foreign dignitaries?
Biblical Archaeology Review, November/December 2018
Ideology from Artifacts
How ancient objects reveal the social reality of their time
We tend to think of ancient objects as either useful or beautiful—or both. A bit of text scratched on a clay tablet is used to communicate or record information; a finely filigreed golden earring is thought to be lovely; an elegant stairway,...
Archaeology Odyssey, March/April 2001
Excavating the Land of Sheba
Archaeology reveals the kingdoms of ancient Yemen
To most people, Yemen is an obscure part of southwest Arabia that appears to have escaped major currents of history. Yemen’s greatest claim to fame is that it is known as the birthplace of the queen of Sheba and that it was once the center of...
Archaeology Odyssey, November/December 2001
Philadelphia of the Decapolis
In the reign of Ptolemy II Philadelphus (283–246 B.C.), Rabbath Ammon was renamed Philadelphia. Despite the name change, the city’s inhabitants remained largely Semitic and probably were never extensively Hellenized. When Arab Muslims...
Archaeology Odyssey, March/April 2002
The World’s First Museum and the World’s First Archaeologists
In 1160 B.C., Shutruk-Nahhunte, King of Elam in the mountains east of Mesopotamia, campaigned triumphantly through Agade, Kish, Sippar, and other towns of ancient Babylonia. He returned to his capital at Susa with a rich haul of loot, which...
Biblical Archaeology Review, January/February 1979
Excavations Near Temple Mount Reveal Splendors of Herodian Jerusalem
Of Jerusalem’s beauty during the Herodian period, the Talmuda tells us: “Whoever has not seen Jerusalem in its splendor has never seen a lovely city.1 Lest this seem a parochial...
Biblical Archaeology Review, July/August 1980
A BAR Editorial: Ancient Remains on the Temple Mount Must Not Be Destroyed
Any archaeological discussion of the Temple or its location on the Temple Mount invariably includes a statement to the effect that it would, of course, be unthinkable to conduct any archaeological excavations on the Temple Mount itself. We do...
Biblical Archaeology Review, March/April 1983
Burial Cave of the Caiaphas Family
The history of archaeology is filled with accidental discoveries. With all our scientific tools and methodologies, chance continues to be a major component of our success. So it was that we discovered the final resting place of the Caiaphas...
Biblical Archaeology Review, September/October 1992
Prize Find: An Incense Shovel from Bethsaida
Slowly it emerged from the ground: a beautiful, 8-inch-long bronze incense shovel, the prize find of the 1996 excavations at Bethsaida, near the northeastern shore of the Sea of Galilee. The shovel lay in a first-century C.E. refuse pit. Just...
Biblical Archaeology Review, January/February 1997
The Holy Sepulchre in History, Archaeology, and Tradition
The Church of the Holy Sepulchre is revered as the site of Jesus’s death, burial, and resurrection. BAR readers get a look at the church’s history and tradition in light of new archaeological research.
Biblical Archaeology Review, Spring 2021
Who Built the Tomb of the Kings?
Since its discovery, most scholars have argued that Jerusalem’s Tomb of the Kings belonged to Queen Helena of Adiabene. But was she the original commissioner of the tomb? Our author presents new archaeological clues that suggest the ownership history of this impressive monument is far more complex than originally thought.
Biblical Archaeology Review, Winter 2021
Journey to Jerusalem
Pilgrims and immigrants in the time of Herod
Jerusalem was home to numerous Diaspora Jewish communities before the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 C.E. From texts to tombs, evidence of these communities abounds. See what it reveals about the city’s cultural, economic, and religious life and diversity.
Biblical Archaeology Review, Fall 2022
The Work of a Lifetime Destroyed—Three Years Later
Early in the afternoon of October 26, 1975 a fire struck the cramped, book-filled office of Father Albert Jamme at Catholic University in the nation’s capital. The fire probably started from neon tubes in a ceiling light fixture, but...
Biblical Archaeology Review, September/October 1978
Who First Excavated Stratigraphically?
Hint: He was an American. Dead giveaway: You’ve known his name since first grade.
North American Indians left few monuments of their civilization. Early European explorers and settlers in North America found no stone cities or defense walls or water systems or monumental structures built by the native Americans. The only...
Biblical Archaeology Review, January/February 1981
Have the Tombs of the Kings of Judah Been Found?
In a recent issue of BAR, archaeologists Gabriel Barkay and Amos Kloner described two magnificent burial caves from the First Temple period located just a few hundred yards north of Jerusalem’s old city (“Jerusalem Tombs From the Days of the...
Biblical Archaeology Review, July/August 1987