Displaying 1 - 20 of 88 results
Barry Powell should have listened to his grammar school teacher. It was the Phoenicians who invented the alphabet. The Phoenician script was strictly consonantal. Vowels were not represented, and the reader was required to supply them from...
Archaeology Odyssey, Winter 1998
A new traveling exhibition of 5,000 years of Georgian art is already ancient history
Look at this crucifix,” said Gary Vikan, the director of the Walters Art Gallery in Baltimore. He pushed a book across the table and pointed to a photograph of a silver sculpture of...
Archaeology Odyssey, January/February 2000
It was one of the most romantic, chaotic, cruel, passionate, bizarre and dramatic episodes in history. In the 12th and 13th centuries A.D., a continual stream of European armies, mustered mostly in present-day France and Germany, marched out...
Archaeology Odyssey, September/October 2000
The many faces of Ramesses the Great
You barely notice him in the cacophony of the modern city. Austere, stiffly formal, he is either too large or too small, slightly ridiculous amid Cairo’s dissonant traffic. The 31-foot-tall, 90-ton granite statue of the Egyptian pharaoh...
Archaeology Odyssey, September/October 2003
A New Translation by Stephen Mitchell
Gilgamesh is at once our newest and our oldest, most venerable epic poem. Unlike Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey, which have been broadly known since their composition around the late eighth century B.C. (except during the medieval Dark Age, when Greek learning was largely lost in the West), the first clay tablets inscribed with the Gilgamesh epic were found just 150 years ago, at the ancient Assyrian site of Nineveh in present-day northern Iraq.
Archaeology Odyssey, July/August 2005
Travelling conditions in the first century
In the Acts of the Apostles, we are told that Paul made three missionary journeys. In almost every introduction to the New Testament I have seen, the author discusses St. Paul’s journeys in terms of places and dates; his concern is to...
Bible Review, Summer 1985
Norman Gottwald’s sociological-literary perspective
Norman Gottwald is one of North America’s leading biblical scholars, and he has just published a comprehensive introduction to the Hebrew Bible that will soon make his name known to a very wide audience. It is titled The Hebrew Bible—...
Bible Review, Summer 1986
A Literary Critic Deepens Our Understanding
In the Gospel miracle stories, Jesus does wonderful things. But the divine power that he dispenses flows through his person while leaving him untouched. In the Transfiguration episode,...
Bible Review, Fall 1987
Have modern scholars failed to appreciate the overall structure in Genesis 1–11?
The documentary hypothesis states that the Pentateuch, the first five books of the Bible, is a compilation of several originally independent documents. Ancient editors or redactors collected these documents, which had been composed at various...
Bible Review, April 1988
Clues to hidden temple treasure?
The Copper Scroll (3Q15 or 3QTreasure) is an anomaly in the inventory of scrolls from Qumran. It does not fit readily into any of the categories customarily included when the scrolls...
Bible Review, August 1992
Traveling tentmakers and church builders
Aquila and his wife Priscilla are the most prominent couple involved in the first-century expansion of Christianity. They were Paul’s hosts at Corinth (Acts 18:2–3). Subsequently they directed house-churches at Ephesus (1 Corinthians 16:19)...
Bible Review, December 1992
Why did Jesus go back to preach in Galilee? The question may seem a silly one. After all, he was a native of Nazareth in Galilee, and it was natural that he should preach to his own...
Bible Review, February 1996
Tracing the Via Dolorosa
The Latin words Via Dolorosa mean the “Sorrowful Way.” They were first used by the Franciscan Boniface of Ragusa in the second half of the 16th century as the name of the...
Bible Review, December 1996
When Jesus was crucified in Jerusalem, the site of what would one day be the Holy Sepulchre Church was an abandoned stone quarry. A catacomb cut into the western side of the quarry attests that the quarry had fallen into disuse. The innermost chamber of the catacomb contains kokhim tombs. These deep recesses into the rock, typical of the first centuries B.C. and A.D., can still be seen behind the Syrian Chapel in the Holy Sepulchre Church today.
Bible Review, December 1997
The scene has stimulated the imagination of great painters. The light of a full moon accentuates the shadows in a garden at the foot of the Mount of Olives. A lonely figure prays in...
Bible Review, April 1998
What we know of the first disciples from their profession
What sorts of men were Simon Peter, Andrew, James and John—crude, ignorant laborers or savvy and practical men of the world? The reliability of much of the Gospels rides on the answer.
Bible Review, June 1999
The historical core behind the testing of Jesus
Three gospels tell of the devil testing Jesus in the wilderness, an incident so remarkable as to seem almost certainly unreal. But is it? Our author suggests a historical core to the tale, a substratum reflecting struggles Jesus faced in his lifetime.
Bible Review, August 1999
Steve Mason has probably made the best case possible that we should adopt an “agnostic” position regarding the birthplace of Jesus. But although Mason has examined the literary data...
Bible Review, February 2000
Making sense of contradictory accounts
Controversy over the burial of James, the brother of Jesus, is nothing new. As early as the fourth century A.D., the location of James’s tomb was disputed. In the words of the church father Jerome, writing in 392 A.D.: “Some monks think James...
Bible Review, June 2003
How the First Christians Dealt with Divine Silence
We are told that God hears our prayers. Then why doesn’t he listen? The most consoling words in the New Testament are, “Ask and you will receive. Seek and you will find. Knock and it will be opened to you” (Matthew 7:7 = Luke 11:9). The...
Bible Review, April 2004