BIBLICAL ARCHAEOLOGY REVIEW
The BAR Companion: July 22, 2009
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FROM BABYLON TO BAGHDAD: ANCIENT IRAQ AND THE MODERN WEST

A free e-book from BAS examines the relationship between Iraq’s ancient past and our modern Western culture

This latest publication from BAS comes at a time of great concern for Iraq’s cultural heritage on the part of the archaeological community, which is outlined in a recent UNESCO report assessing the damage incurred to ancient sites and museums during the course of the Iraq war. From Babylon to Baghdad: Ancient Iraq and the Modern West examines the relationship between ancient Iraq and the cultures of modern Western societies. This collection of articles details some of the ways in which ancient Near Eastern civilizations have impressed themselves on our Western culture. It examines the evolving relationship that modern scholarship has with this part of the world, and chronicles the present-day fight to preserve Iraq’s cultural heritage.

Download your FREE copy of From Babylon to Baghdad: Ancient Iraq and the Modern West.

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THE JAMES OSSUARY DEBATE CONTINUES

Has Joe Zias shown the James Ossuary inscription to be a modern forgery?

Following the recent television interview with Joe Zias, a physical anthropologist formerly with the Israel Antiquities Authority, BAR editor Hershel Shanks discusses Zias’s claim that he had seen the now-famous ossuary in a Jerusalem antiquities shop in the 1990s without the words "brother of Jesus" on the end of the inscription that reads "James son of Joseph, brother of Jesus" in its entirety. The implications of the veracity of Zias’s claim are enormous: If it’s true, then the inscription must be a forgery. If it’s not true, then the implications are even greater.

Watch Joe Zias’s recent television interview and read Hershel Shanks’s comments

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HISTORY IN LIMBO–200th ISSUE PREVIEW!

Scholar blocks reports of past excavations

In this special 200th issue preview article, BAR editor Hershel Shanks raises the concern of unpublished excavation reports. Both the ancient synagogue at Ein Gedi and the site of Makmish were excavated, but neither was ever published. In both cases, states Shanks, eminent Israeli archaeologist Dan Barag is the key. Professor Barag, who has held the publication rights to both excavations for decades without publishing, refuses to release the excavation materials to others who would publish them. While Barag cites various reasons for his reluctance, the end result is still the same: Until this material is published, we are deprived of information that could help scholars piece together our past.

Read Hershel Shanks’s discussion of the blocked publications of the Ein Gedi synagogue and the site of Makmish

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EGYPT: LAND OF LEGENDS AND MYSTERIES
Travel a new and exotic path!

Travel a new and exotic path in Egypt! Once you’ve walked in the footsteps of pharaohs and kings, you’ll want to return again and again. This tour not only introduces the first-time visitor to Egypt’s wonders, but also reveals more of her secrets to those who have traveled this legendary land before. Whether it’s your first visit or your tenth, we promise that you’ve never seen the legends and mysteries of Egypt like this. Your lecturer and guide is renowned scholar Dr. Chahinda Karim, who will introduce you to el-Amarna, Beni Hassan, the Pyramid of Meidum, St. Catherine’s Monastery, the Library at Alexandria, the Red Monastery, Pharaohs Island, the Valley of the Kings, Thebes, Luxor and more!

Sign up for authentic travel off the beaten track in the capable hands of Dr. Chahinda Karim

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EVENT WATCH
Ethiopian and Egyptian Art at the Walters Art Museum

The Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, Maryland, is the home of an impressive collection of Egyptian and Ethiopian art. The Ethiopian collection, which is the largest of its kind outside of Ethiopia, is displayed with other works of art from Byzantium and Russia to highlight the history of the ancient Christian Church. The majority of the pieces throughout the exhibit are related to the Coptic Church and the Orthodox community. Also contained within the museum’s collection is a permanent Egyptian exhibit that highlights the everyday lives of ancient Egyptians through its display of Egyptian art, sculptures, jewelry and coffins, as well as an Egyptian mummy.

Learn more about the Ethiopian and Egyptian Art at the Walters Museum

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BREAKING NEWS
Check out the latest news in Biblical archaeology and related topics–updated daily

This week in the news, the ancient past gets a boost from modern technology as archaeologists receive help from the U.N. International Atomic Energy Agency. In Iran, construction work has damaged a Parthian-era site, while recent discoveries of a snake-worshipping cult are made in the United Arab Emirates. In Israel, clues to mysterious foot-shaped structures may come from the ancient Egyptians.

Read more Breaking News

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INCOMPARABLE ISRAEL
Experience Israel in a way that transcends the usual tour.

Visit one of the world’s most sacred and history-drenched lands on an adventure that only we can provide. Take an extraordinary journey through the Holy Land where three of the world’s largest religions converge in history. Experience the ancient world firsthand as you participate in an archaeological dig and see the sites and museums guided by top scholars and researchers. Your expert scholar-guide Amnon Wallenstein will bring ancient Israel to life before your eyes with his dynamic narrative and fantastic breadth of knowledge.

Sign up now to embark on your adventure in Israel

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CARTOON CAPTION CONTEST
Submit a caption

Write a caption for this cartoon! The author of the best caption will receive a BAS T-shirt, a Dead Sea Scroll mug and three complimentary subscriptions to give BAR to friends.
Runners-up will receive a BAS T-shirt and two complimentary subscriptions.The deadline for captions is October 15, 2009.

Submit your caption

» CONTENTS

From Babylon to Baghdad
Ossuary Debate Continues
History in Limbo
Egypt Tour
Event Watch
Breaking News
Incomparable Israel
Cartoon Caption Contest

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HONOR AND SHAME: CORE VALUES OF THE BIBLICAL WORLD


Richard Rohrbaugh delivers a must-have 55-minute lecture for anyone who wants to understand the New Testament and the Middle East, both in Jesus’ day and modern times.

DVD – $19.95
Audio CD – $13.95

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