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The Archaeology of the Holy Land
From the Destruction of Solomon's Temple to the Muslim Conquest


  • Author: Jodi Magness, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
  • Date Published: October 2012
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521124133

£ 36.99

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About the Authors
  • This book provides an introduction to the archaeology and history of ancient Palestine – modern Israel, Jordan and the Palestinian territories – from the destruction of Solomon's temple in 586 BCE to the Muslim conquest in 640 CE. Special attention is paid to the archaeology of Jerusalem and the Second Temple period, in the time of Herod the Great and Jesus. For each period, the book offers a historical background for the Mediterranean world and the ancient Near East, as well as the events in Palestine. Major sites such as Masada, Caesarea Maritima and Petra are examined in archaeological and historical detail, along with the material culture – coins, pottery, glass and stone vessels – of each period. This book provides a thorough overview of the archaeology of this historically vibrant part of the world.

    • A general yet comprehensive introduction that is richly illustrated and provides a thorough overview of the archaeology of this historically vibrant part of the world
    • Provides historical context; for each period, the book offers a historical background for the Mediterranean world and the ancient Near East, as well as the events in Palestine
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'The strength of Magness' volume are fourfold: first, it is well illustrated with maps and photographs; second, descriptions of archaeological periods are concise and salient; third, the information in the sidebars is used to debunk some of the pseudo-science that is prevalent in the media and in popular culture; fourth, this textbook is written in a manner that makes the subject matter accessible to undergraduate students. For instance, her chapter summarising archaeological methods is perhaps one of the best that I have read for an introductory textbook. It is readable and her use of contemporary analogies in order to illustrate archaeological methods is excellent.' Benjamin A. Saidel, East Carolina University

    'In this beautifully produced volume, Jodi Magness provides a superb introduction to the archaeology of the region of ancient Palestine, and creates a focus that is somewhat different from the usual presentations of 'biblical archaeology' … This book is an invaluable overview and full of Magness' characteristically sound and insightful judgements. It will be much used by students and scholars.' Joan Taylor, Strata: Bulletin of the Anglo-Israel Archaeological Society

    'The book is written by an expert on the topic who has participated in major excavations herself. It is well written and contains a wealth of images. It is a valuable aid for scholars, students and all interested non-specialists alike.' Journal for the Study of the New Testament

    'It shouldn't take very long for the reader to recognize that a career's worth of knowledge has been condensed and organized into this outstanding textbook - [Magness] had wanted to write this book for 'more than twenty years'. Like a good wine, we ought to be grateful that the author waited to serve this information to us. The work is extensive, covering as much information as possible, yet it is organized as to be accessible, providing the reader with succinctly written sections. Students will benefit from the breadth of data provided. Instructors can be confident that their pupils are getting a more than adequate introduction to the subject. In fact, anyone who is interested in the topics this book discusses will benefit from reading it.' Brian Leport, Ancient Jew Review

    '… the publication of The Archaeology of the Holy Land is yet another feather in [Magness'] fedora, one that archaeology enthusiasts - specialists and non-specialists alike - will want to have available on their bookshelves.' Ralph K. Hawkins, Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society

    'Jodi Magness has an unrivalled reputation for scholarship in regard to the archaeology of this extended period and an ability to convey its results attractively to a wide audience, and both qualities are paraded here to good effect.' H. G. M. Williamson, Journal of Jewish Studies

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    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2012
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521124133
    • length: 397 pages
    • dimensions: 254 x 177 x 17 mm
    • weight: 0.8kg
    • contains: 188 b/w illus. 13 maps
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. The topography and early history of Jerusalem (to 586 BCE)
    3. The Babylonian (586–539 BCE) and Persian (539–332 BCE) periods
    4. The early Hellenistic period (332–167 BCE)
    5. The late Hellenistic (Hasmonean) period (167–40 BCE)
    6. The archaeology of Qumran and the Dead Sea Scrolls
    7. The early Roman (Herodian) period (40 BCE–70 CE): Jerusalem
    8. The early Roman (Herodian) period (40 BCE–70 CE): Caesarea Maritima, Samaria-Sebaste, Herodian Jericho, and Herodium
    9. The early Roman (Herodian) period (40 BCE–70 CE): Jesus' birth and Galilean setting
    10. The early Roman (Herodian) period (40 BCE–70 CE): Masada
    11. Ancient Jewish tombs and burial customs (to 70 CE)
    12. From 70 CE to the Bar Kokhba Revolt (135/136 CE) (the Second Jewish Revolt against the Romans)
    13. Aelia Capitolina (Hadrianic Jerusalem) (135 to ca. 500 CE)
    14. Roman and the late antique period synagogues in Palestine
    15. The Byzantine (early Christian) period (313–640 CE): Jerusalem
    16. The Byzantine (early Christian) period (313–640 CE): Palestine under Christian rule
    17. Epilogue: early Islamic Jerusalem (638–750 CE).

  • Author

    Jodi Magness, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
    Jodi Magness is the Kenan Distinguished Professor for Teaching Excellence in Early Judaism in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. She is the author and editor of several books, including Stone and Dung, Oil and Spit: Jewish Daily Life in the Time of Jesus (2011), The Archaeology of the Early Islamic Settlement in Palestine (2003) and The Archaeology of Qumran and the Dead Sea Scrolls (2002).

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