5 Easy Tips For Promoting Your Dig

Ever wish more people knew about your dig site and the research being completed? Here are 5 easy tips to promote your your research, increase your visibility to potential funders, and establish yourself as an expert […]


World Heritage Day Symposium Twitter Recap

World Heritage Day—Protecting, Preserving, and Presenting the Cultural Heritage of the Near East to the Public ASOR and AIA (The Archaeological Institute of America), in cooperation with the Smithsonian Institution […]

Nazareth 1934. Matson Collection, Library of Congress.

Jesus as a Security Risk: Intelligence and Repression in the Roman Empire

Intelligence personnel tend to have a view of events that differs from historians, even other people in government, and certainly from the general public. They are often accused of being realpolitikers […]

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Sex Crimes in the Laws of the Hebrew Bible [PODCAST]

I had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Wells about what constituted as a sex crime according to the Hebrew Bible all those years ago. Although biblical texts identify a range of sexual behavior as […]

Tell Asmar, Northern Palace drainage system, arched brick drain below street in F15. Oriental Institute, University of Chicago, Diyala Archaeological Database, Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Trash and Toilets in Mesopotamia: Sanitation and Early Urbanism

The recent celebration of World Toilet Day in November 2015 shone a spotlight on the variety of modern sanitation systems. Some 35% of the world’s population has no access to clean […]

Israel Finkelstein

The Role of Biblical Archaeology in Exegesis: An interview with Professor Israel Finkelstein, Part 1

Many, but not all, excavations demonstrate that text and spade point in different directions. If, therefore, archaeology is allowed to tell its own story some parts […]

Section drawing showing cut away areas of bedrock.

Reconstructing Tell er-Rumeith

In the spring of 1967, a team of archaeologists led by the late Paul Lapp concluded excavations at the small Iron Age site of Tell er-Rumeith in northern Jordan. Nearly 50 years later, his widow, Nancy Lapp, and I published the final report of […]


Crime and Sexual Offense in Hatti [Podcast]

In a recent special Near Eastern Archaeology issue on crime and punishment in the Bible and the Near East, Dr. Ilan Peled authored the article, “Crime and Sexual Offense in Hatti.” I had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Peled about crime […]

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An Early Islamic Homicide at Qasr Hallabat, Jordan [PODCAST]

In a recent special Near Eastern Archaeology issue on crime and punishment in the Bible and the Near East, Dr. Megan Perry co-authored the article “An Early Islamic Homicide at Cahser Hallabat, Jordan” with […]

Professor Mehmet Önal at Tell Harran, 2014.

Unearthing the Past at Ancient Harran and the Wells of Paddan-Aram

Many know Harran from the biblical story of Abraham and his family’s wanderings. Today the huge tell of Harran, the mound of the ancient city, measures over one kilometre across and is surrounded by ancient walls […]

Votive statues showing the attitude of prayer, found at Tell Asmar, Iraq, ca. 2900-2500 BCE. Oriental Institute, University of Chicago.

Akkadian Prayers in Ancient Mesopotamia

Prayer is ubiquitous in human societies, including ancient Mesopotamia, but it often appears alien or distant to our modern sensibilities. A closer look shows that this seemingly arcane topic tells us much about Mesopotamian hopes, fears […]

ʾIšbaʿal Inscription from Khirbet Qeiyafa, ca. late 11th century BCE.
Photo courtesy of Tal Rogovski and Yossi Garfinkel

What names teach us about Iron II society in the Land of Israel

Names send messages about identity. Today, many African-Americans have first names that are totally different from those of white Americans. But until the early 1970s there was a great similarity […]

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Violence and the City: On the Yahwist’s Leviathan [PODCAST]

Continuing our look inside the recent special Near Eastern Archaeology issue on crime and punishment in the Bible and the Near East, we spoke with Dr. Robert Kawashima about his article, “Violence and the […]

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Sacred Violence: When Ancient Egyptian Punishment was Dressed in Ritual Trappings [PODCAST]

Recently, we had the opportunity to speak with Kerry Muhlestein about his recent Near Eastern Archaeology article, Sacred Violence: When Ancient Egyptian Punishment was Dressed […]


DIG DEEPER, REACH HIGHER: The ASOR Strategic Plan, 2016-2020

The ASOR Strategic Plan, 2016-2020 Draft put forward for comment by the ASOR Strategic Planning Task Force: Susan Ackerman (Chair), Gary Arbino, Vivian Bull, Richard Coffman, Sharon Herbert, Ann-Marie Knoblauch, […]

Yigael Yadin, director of Hazor and Masada
excavations, in 1978.   Photo: No. 102, 1671 in State of Israel National Photo collection item no. 016721

Yigael Yadin’s Last Night in America: ASOR and the Biblical Archaeology Movement

In light of the sharp decline in enrollments in the humanities in colleges and universities in the United States and abroad, I thought it might be helpful to share a story about Yigael Yadin’s last […]

Perimortem trauma in a cranium from Tell Barri (Islamic period). Courtesy Arkadiusz Sołtysiak.

Head Injuries in Ancient Mesopotamia: What do we Really Know?

Three millennia of documented history of Sumer, Akkad, Babylonia and Assyria are dominated by the accounts of war, and violence seems to have been present in the everyday life of all Mesopotamians. What do […]

Peter Herdrich, far left, Donald H. Sanders, far right with viewers

Nimrud Rising: An Immersive Virtual Reality Recreation of a Lost Site

In March, 2015, reports from the Iraqi Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities confirmed that agents of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) had attacked the ancient Assyrian capital city of Nimrud in northeastern […]


Interview with Zahi Hawass

Few individuals are so closely identified with Egypt – and ancient Egypt – as Zahi Hawass. Formerly Minister of State for Antiquities, Hawass has been Chief Inspector and Director of the Giza Plateau, Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, and has excavated at numerous sites […]


The So-Called Jehoash Inscription: A Post Mortem

At the turn of 2003 the Israeli press published a front-page article, announcing the authentification by the Geological Survey of Israel of what appeared to be a royal inscription of King Jehoash of Judah (circa 800 BCE). If genuine, the inscription […]

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