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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Virtual Bible Project [PODCAST]

At the 2015 ASOR Annual Meeting, I met with Dr. James Strange and Dr. Daniel Warner to talk about their Virtual Bible Project: Animated Mapping Series. They hope to present on the project at the 2016 ASOR Annual Meeting in San Antonio, Texas […]

Quarry near Elephantine.

Crime and Punishment in Pharaonic Egypt

In ancient Egypt crimes are acts are against other persons or the state. Punishments are official, not private sanctions against persons who committed crimes. The term for “crime” is bt3. A capital crime is bt3 ‘3 (n mwt), “great crime” (worthy of death) […]


Twitter Recap: Protecting Our Shared Heritage in Syria— International Summit to Promote Collaboration

On Friday, December 11, 2015 there was a free and open to the public symposium at the National Geographic Society Grosvenor Auditorium in Washington, DC. The symposium […]

Qyzqapan 6-7th century B.C., Iraq. All images courtesy of Mapping Mesopotamian Monuments. Department of Art History and Archaeology, Columbia University. All rights reserved.

Preserving the Past: the Mapping Mesopotamian Monuments Project

Iraq became accessible once again for archaeologists, and documentation with a possibility for future conservation could begin. It was with this in mind that the idea of the project Mapping Mesopotamian Monuments […]

Rock cut pool for keeping murex shells intended for the purple dye industry in Shiqmona (E.G.).

Israel’s Marine Archaeology Treasures – An Endangered Cultural Resource

Legal mechanisms must be used to control coastal development, assure integrated coastal zone management, establish sustainable development and protect the marine cultural resources. National and regional master […]

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2015 ASOR Annual Meeting Presentations [VIDEO]

At the 2015 ASOR Annual Meeting, several of our members graciously volunteered to have their presentations recorded for ASORtv. Some presenters met with our Digital Media Specialist to read their papers, and some volunteers were recorded in session […]

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Resources on the Cultural Crisis in the Near East

The scale of the human crisis in Syria has expanded and now involves Europe. Damage to archaeological and heritage sites also continues at an alarming rate. We present here a series of new and important links discussing the ongoing cultural disaster […]


(Very) Long Distant Trade – Egyptian, Mesopotamia and Denmark in the Late Bronze Age

Archaeologists frequently talk about ‘long distance trade.’ But sometimes those distances are very long. Denmark can be proposed as the most distant area that received such beads, […]

The Alalakh Archaeopark.

New Excavations in the Plain of Antioch

The vibrant Bronze Age city of Alalakh on the Plain of Antioch may not have been among the largest cities of the ancient Near East, but its strategic importance and unique character made it a star. Ongoing excavations and research directed by K. Aslıhan […]

Figure 7- Ground penetrating radar  sub-surface mapping of the Kahal Shalom Synagogue, Rhodes

Between Ancient Rhodes and Israel: Comparing Literary and Material Cultures

The project to understand the interaction between Rhodes and Israel and more specifically with Bethsaida, began with our assessment of Bethsaida as a Galillean site located between […]


King Tut – What We Do and Don’t Know With Marianne Eaton-Krauss [Podcast]

In this installment of the Friends of ASOR podcast, I met with Egyptologist and author, Marianne Eaton-Krauss, to discuss King Tut and her upcoming book, The Unknown Tutankhamun — available mid-December […]


Introducing the Lanier Theological Library

Gertrude Bell, Cappadocian Fathers, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, Nuzi tablets, Dead Sea Scroll fragments, Moshe Goshen-Gottstein, and William Hallo have in common? They have all found a home, of sorts, at the Lanier Theological Library […]


A Call for the Preservation of Heritage Landscapes in the United Arab Emirates

By that time, I had lived in the United Arab Emirates for fourteen years and had forced busloads of Emirati university students to various archaeological sites and abandoned villages – an experience that probably […]

Fig. 6: Fragment of the 5th tablet of the “Song of Release”, published in H. Otten & Ch. Rüster, Keilschrifttexte aus Boğazköy vol. 32, text no. 15. The tablet is bilingual: on the left there is the column with the Hurrian text, on the right the column with the Hittite translation; from

Narrative Literature of Hurrian Origin: Moving Treasures from the Ancient Near East

The ancient definition Hittite scribes employed to classify literary compositions of Hurrian origin was the Sumerian logogram ŠÌR “song”. It is not clear whether they actually were sung, but […]


ASOR Strategic Planning, 2016-2020

For the past five years (2011-2015), ASOR has been well guided by the Strategic Plan adopted by its Board of Trustees in April 2010. Indeed, ASOR has achieved many of the goals identified in the 2011-2015 Strategic Plan, especially with respect […]

Figure 9. Female head, ivory. Nimrud, Iraq, 900-700 BCE. The British Museum, BM 118220, © Trustees of The British Museum.

Who’s the Fairest of them all? Feminine Beauty in the Hebrew Bible and Iron Age Ivory Sculpture

From fairy tales to fashion magazines, notions of feminine beauty pervade the world we live in. But what does the Hebrew Bible have to say about this topic? And how might […]

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