BookPDF Available

Tell it in Gath Studies in the History and Archaeology of Israel Essays in Honor of Aren M. Maeir on the Occasion of his Sixtieth Birthday

Authors:
  • Bar Ilan university and Beit Berl College
Book

Tell it in Gath Studies in the History and Archaeology of Israel Essays in Honor of Aren M. Maeir on the Occasion of his Sixtieth Birthday

Tell it in Gath
Studies in the History
and Archaeology of Israel
Essays in Honor of Aren M. Maeir
on the Occasion of his Sixtieth Birthday
Edited by Itzhaq Shai, Jeffrey R. Chadwick,
Louise Hitchcock, Amit Dagan, Chris McKinny
and Joe Uziel
ÄGYPTEN UND ALTES TESTAMENT
Studien zu Geschichte, Kultur und Religion Ägyptens und des Alten Testaments
Band 90
Gegründet von Manfred Görg
Herausgegeben von Stefan Jakob Wimmer und Wolfgang Zwickel
Tell it in Gath
Studies in the History
and Archaeology of Israel
Essays in Honor of Aren M. Maeir
on the Occasion of his Sixtieth Birthday
Edited by Itzhaq Shai, Jeffrey R. Chadwick,
Louise Hitchcock, Amit Dagan, Chris McKinny
and Joe Uziel
Zaphon
Münster
2018
Photographie auf dem Einband: Copyright Griffin Aerial Imagery
Ägypten und Altes Testament, Band 90
Tell it in Gath:Studies in the History and Archaeology of Israel:
Essays in Honor of Aren M. Maeir on the Occasion of his Sixtieth Birthday
Edited by Itzhaq Shai, Jeffrey R. Chadwick, Louise Hitchcock, Amit Dagan,
Chris McKinny and Joe Uziel
© 2018 Zaphon, Münster (www.zaphon.de)
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced,
stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means,
electronic, mechanical, photo-copying, recording, or otherwise,
without the prior permission of the publisher.
Printed in Germany
ISBN 978-3-96327-032-1
ISSN 0720-9061
Printed on acid-free paper
CONTENTS
List of Contributors ................................................................................................................................... x
Introduction ............................................................................................................................................ xiii
Ahuva Ho
Over Two Decades of Friendship, Fieldwork, and Comradery with Aren Maeir ............................. xvi
Section 1: The Rising Urban Entities: Studies in the Early Bronze Age of the Southern Levant
Pierre de Miroschedji
Metrology and Early Bronze Age Urbanization in the Southern Levant: Some Additional Notes ...... 2
Haskel J. Greenfield, Jeremy A. Beller and Thomas E. Levy
Butchering Technology During the Early Bronze Age I: An Examination of Microscopic
Cut Marks on Animal Bones from Nahal Tillah, Israel ..................................................................... 20
Alexander Joffe
Notes on Early Bronze Age Commensality ....................................................................................... 41
David Ussishkin
A Note on the Fortifications of Tel Poran .......................................................................................... 71
Ayelet Levy-Reifer and Yitzhak Paz
Tel Yarmouth, its Environs and their Reflection on the Urban Landscape of the Shephelah
in the Early Bronze Age III ................................................................................................................ 77
Section 2: “and the Canaanite was then in the land”: The Middle and Late Bronze Age
Beth Alpert Nakhai
When Considering Infants and Jar Burials in the Middle Bronze Age Southern Levant ..................100
Nava Panitz-Cohen, Robert A. Mullins, Arlette David and Ariel Shatil
A Late Middle Bronze IIB Burial from Tel Abel Beth Maacah: A Northern Perspective
on the Hyksos Phenomenon ..............................................................................................................129
Amihai Mazar
Middle Bronze Syro-Anatolian Cylinder Seals and Impressions from Tel Beth Shean ....................153
Jeffrey R. Chadwick
Hebron in Early Bronze Age III and Middle Bronze Age II: Fortification Walls in Area I.3
of the American Expedition to Hebron (Tell er-Rumeide) ...............................................................167
Wolfgang Zwickel
The Late Bronze Age in the Northern Jordan Valley ........................................................................187
Peter M. Fischer and Teresa Bürge
A Levantine Vessel from a Late Cypriot Tomb at Hala Sultan Tekke ..............................................194
Yuval Gadot, Sabine Kleiman and Oded Lipschits
A Tale of Two Cities: Tel Azekah and Tell es-Safi/Gath during the Late Bronze Age ....................206
Section 3: “We are come down to bind thee, that we may deliver thee into the hand of the
Philistines”: The Origins, Material Culture and Interactions of the Philistines
Joseph Maran
Goliath’s Peers: Interconnected Polyethnic Warrior Elites in the Eastern Mediterranean
of the 13
th and 12th centuries BCE .....................................................................................................223
CONTENTS
Rona S. Avissar Lewis
A Matter of Perception: Children in Pre-Israelite and Philistine Houses in the Iron Age I ..............242
Shirly Ben-Dor Evian
The Egyptianised Ivories from Philistia: Style, Function and Identity .............................................254
David Ben-Shlomo
Judah and the Philistines in the Iron Age I and IIA ..........................................................................269
Celia J. Bergoffen
The Ashdoda Figurine as an Anthropomorphized Chair ..................................................................283
Seymour Gitin and Baruch Brandl
An Iron Age II Cache of Phoenician Jewelry from Tel Miqne-Ekron ..............................................294
Louise A. Hitchcock
‘All the Cherethites, and all the Pelethites, and all the Gittites’ (2 Samuel 2:15-18) –
An Up-To-Date Account of the Minoan Connection with the Philistines .........................................304
Linda G. Meiberg
Decorative Motifs on Philistine Pottery and their Connections to Crete ..........................................322
Irit Ziffer
Philistine Head Cups Once More ......................................................................................................336
Maura Sala
Beyond Dagon: Resilience and Entanglement of Canaanite Backgrounds in Sacred Buildings
and Cult Practices of Early Iron Age Philistia ..................................................................................352
Philipp W. Stockhammer
Rethinking Philistia as a Contact Zone .............................................................................................375
Section 4: “And there went out a champion out of the camp of the Philistines”:
Entering the Third Decade of the Tell es-Safi/Gath Archaeological Project
Suembikya Frumin, Yoel Melamed and Ehud Weiss
Current Vegetation of Tel Tzafit .......................................................................................................386
Amit Dagan and Joe Uziel
Surveying the Survey: A Contemporary View on Past Results ........................................................414
Cynthia Shafer-Elliott
Coming Home Again: Household Archaeology at Judahite Gath .....................................................424
Shawn Zelig Aster
The Historical Background of the Destruction of Judahite Gath in 712 BCE ...................................436
Yigal Levin
“Tell it Not in Gath” (Micah 1:10): What is Gath Doing in a List of the Destroyed
Towns of Judah? ...............................................................................................................................445
Section 5: “Then Hazael king of Syria went up, and fought against Gath, and took it”:
The Aramean Realm
Erez Ben-Yosef and Omer Sergi
The Destruction of Gath by Hazael and the Arabah Copper Industry: A Reassessment ...................461
Shira Gur-Arieh
Siege Matters: Insights from the Zakkur Inscription and Other Ancient Sources
on Ancient Near Eastern Siege Warfare ............................................................................................481
André Lemaire
Remarks on the Early Use of Aramaic in Egypt ...............................................................................493
vi
CONTENTS
K. Lawson Younger, Jr.
The Aramean Ancestor Cult at Tell Ḥalaf (Gōzān) during the Kapara Period: Tomb 1
and the Tempelpalast .........................................................................................................................506
Section 6: “are they not written in the book of the chronicles of the kings of Israel?”:
New Perspectives on the Biblical Accounts
Marvin A. Sweeney
Balaam in Intertextual Perspective ....................................................................................................534
Gershon Galil
The Formation of the Book of Joshua ...............................................................................................549
Thomas Schneider
The Stigma of Submission: Reassessing Sisera’s Fate in Judges 5:25-27 ........................................562
Chris McKinny
Pressing On: Identifying the “Other” Gath and Its Implications for Understanding
the Border between the Kingdoms of Israel and Judah .....................................................................577
Itzhaq Shai
Amon, Son of Manasseh ...................................................................................................................595
Section 7: “And the staff of his spear was like a weaver’s beam; and his spear’s head weighed
six hundred shekels of iron”: Textual and Archaeological Research of the Iron Age
Brent Davis
Literacy in Cyprus and the Levant in the Early Iron Age: Continuities from the Bronze Age .........603
James W. Hardin and Jeffrey A. Blakely
An Alternate Interpretation of Iron Age Tell en-Negila: The Relationship between
Tell el-Hesi and Tell en-Negila .........................................................................................................612
Ido Koch
Late Iron Age I Southwestern Canaanite Multi-Facet Stamp-Amulets: Innovative Imagery
and Interpreted Egyptian Heritage ....................................................................................................632
Deborah Cassuto
Unravelling the Time for War: A Note on Seasonality, Weaving and the Fall of Ḥazor ..................653
Lily Singer-Avitz
The Iron IIB Pottery: On Typological Differences between the Regions of Judah and Israel ..........663
Norma Franklin
The Kushite Connection: The Destruction of Lachish and the Salvation of Jerusalem ....................680
Assaf Kleiman, Paula Waiman-Barak and Israel Finkelstein
A Cypro-Archaic I Amphora from Megiddo ....................................................................................696
Stefan Jakob Wimmer
Palestinian Hieratic in Non-Hebrew Context: Egyptian Numerals and Special Signs
in Regions Neighboring Israel ...........................................................................................................709
Section 8: “Whenever a theory appears to you as the only possible one, take this as a sign that
you have neither understood the theory nor the problem which it was intended to
solve”: Methodological Approaches to the Archaeology of the Ancient Near East
Dvory Namdar, Anat Cohen-Weinberger and Sharon Zuckerman (z”l)
Towards a New Understanding of MB IIB Cult Practices: Analyses of Seven-Cupped Bowls
from the Shrine of Nahariya ..............................................................................................................723
Joseph Yellin
The Origins of Tel Batash-Timnah Pottery of the Late Bronze Age .................................................747
vii
CONTENTS
Dan Cabanes
The Role of Phytolith Analysis in Levantine Archaeology ...............................................................759
Kate Raphael and Amotz Agnon
Earthquakes East and West of the Dead Sea Transform in the Bronze and Iron Ages .....................769
Ruth Shahak-Gross
Micromorphological Insights into Construction Materials and their Manufacture Technology
at Tell es-Safi/Gath ...........................................................................................................................799
Adi Eliyahu-Behar and Naama Yahalom-Mack
Metallurgical Investigations at Tell es-Safi/Gath ..............................................................................811
Elizabeth R. Arnold and Haskel J. Greenfield
Understanding Animal Movement and Urban Provisioning through the Integration of
Zooarchaeology and Isotopic Analyses: A Case Study from Early Bronze Tell eṣ-Ṣâfı̂/Gath,
Israel ..................................................................................................................................................816
Oren Ackermann
Life on Nari (Calcrete) Outcrops: A Base for Ecological and Human Systems in the Judean
Shephelah ..........................................................................................................................................839
Section 9: “It’s interesting to see that people had so much clutter even thousands of years ago.
The only way to get rid of it all was to bury it, and then some archaeologist went and
dug it all up”: Reports on Archaeological Excavations and Finds
Roi Shavit, Gabriel Mazor, Ianir Milevski, Steven A. Rosen and Ofer Marder
Biq’at ‘Uvda 2: A Timnian Site in the Southern Negev ...................................................................859
Hamoudi Khalaily, Karen Covello-Paran and Ofer Marder
Lithic Traditions and Formal Tools of an Early Pottery Neolithic Site: Tel Yosef as a Case Study 881
Shira Albaz
Simple Choices or Hidden Meaning: Understanding Patterns in the Raw Materials of Bead
Production throughout the Bronze Age .............................................................................................901
Estelle Orrelle
Refashioned Sherds – Lost in Classification .....................................................................................911
Josephine A. Verduci
The Final Cut: Symbolic Acts of Destruction in the Ancient Near East ...........................................928
Yosef Garfinkel and Saar Ganor
Khirbet al-Raʿi near Lachish .............................................................................................................943
Samuel R. Wolff and Steven M. Ortiz
Roll the Dice: Iron Age II Gameboards and Playing Pieces from Tel Gezer ....................................956
Liora Kolska Horwitz, Eitan Tchernov (z”l) and Omri Lernau
The Archaeozoology of Vered Yericho, an Iron Age II Fortified Structure in the Kingdom
of Judah .............................................................................................................................................966
Ester Eshel, Nahshon Szanton and Joe Uziel
An Iron Age II Inscription from the City of David .........................................................................1008
Section 10: “Discover how to visit the past and bring yesterday's stories into our lives today”:
Various Other Studies
Jennie Ebeling
Representations of Ancient Daily Life in Early Excavation Reports ..............................................1018
Adrian J. Boas
Return to the Holy City: Historical and Archaeological Sources on the Frankish Presence
in Jerusalem between 1229 and 1244 ..............................................................................................1028
viii
CONTENTS
Angelika Berlejung
Social Demarcation Lines and Marriage Rules in Urban Babylonia and Their Impact
on the Golah ....................................................................................................................................1051
Color Plates .........................................................................................................................................1078
ix
LIST OF CONTRIBUTORS
Oren Ackermann – Institute of Archaeology, Ariel University
Amotz Agnon – Fredy & Nadine Hermann Institute of Earth Sciences, The Hebrew University of
Jerusalem
Shira Albaz – The Martin (Szusz) Department of the Land of Israel and Archaeology, Bar-Ilan
University
Elizabeth R. Arnold – Grand Valley State University
Shawn Zelig Aster – Bar Ilan University
Rona S. Avissar Lewis – W. F. Albright Institute of Archaeological Research
Jeremy A. Beller – University of Victoria
Shirly Ben-Dor Evian – Israel Museum, Jerusalem and Tel Aviv University
David Ben-Shlomo – Institute of Archaeology, Ariel University
Erez Ben-Yosef – Tel Aviv University
Celia J. Bergoffen – Fashion Institute of Technology, New York, NY
Angelika Berlejung – University of Leipzig and University of Stellenbosch
Jeffrey A. Blakely – Department of Classics and Ancient Near Eastern Studies, University of Wisconsin-
Madison
Adrian J. Boas – University of Haifa
Baruch Brandl – Israel Antiquities Authority
Teresa. Bürge – Institute for Oriental and European Archaeology Austrian Academy of Sciences,
Vienna
Dan Cabanes – Department of Anthropology, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey
Deborah Cassuto – Bar Ilan University and Albright Institute of Archaeological Research
Jeffrey R. Chadwick – Jerusalem Center Professor of Archaeology and Near Eastern Studies, Brigham
Young University
Anat Cohen-Weinberger – Israel Antiquities Authority
Karen Covallo-Paran – Israel Antiquities Authority
Amit Dagan – Bar Ilan University; and Joe Uziel – Israel Antiquities Authority
Arlette David – The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Brent Davis – University of Melbourne
Jennie Ebeling – University of Evansville
Adi Eliyahu-Behar – Institute of Archaeology and the Department of Chemical Sciences, Ariel
University Ariel University
Ester Eshel – Bar-Ilan University
Israel Finkelstein – Tel Aviv University
Peter M. Fischer – Professor Cypriot and Near Eastern Archaeology, University of Gothenburg,
Sweden
Norma Franklin – Zinman Institute, University of Haifa
Suembikya Frumin – Archaeobotanical lab, Institute of Archaeology, The Martin (Szusz) Department of
Land of Israel Studies and Archaeology Bar-Ilan University
Yuval Gadot – Tel Aviv University
Gershon Galil – University of Haifa
Saar Ganor – Israel Antiquities Authority
Yosef Garfinkel – the Institute of Archaeology, Hebrew University
Seymour Gitin – W. F. Albright Institute of Archaeological Research
Yuval Goren – Archaeological Division, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
LIST OF CONTRIBUTORS
Haskel J. Greenfield University of Manitoba;
Shira Gur-Arieh Faculty of Archäologe, Leiden University
Alexander Joffe Independent scholar
James W. Hardin Cobb Institute of Archaeology, Mississippi State University
Louise A. Hitchcock – Classics and Archaeology Program, The University of Melbourne
Ahuva Ho – Independent scholar
Hamoudi Khalaily Israel Antiquities Authority
Assaf Kleiman – Tel Aviv University
Sabine Kleiman Tel Aviv University
Ido Koch Tel Aviv University
Liora Kolska Horwitz National Natural History Collections, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
André Lemaire École Pratique des Hautes Études, Paris
Omri Lernau The Zinman Institute of Archaeology, University of Haifa
Yigal Levin The Israel and Golda Koschitzky Department of Jewish History, Bar Ilan University
Thomas E. Levy – UC San Diego
Ayelet Levy-Reifer – Ashkelon Academic College; and Itzhak Paz Israel Antiquities Authority
Oded Lipschits – Tel Aviv University
Joseph Maran University of Heidelberg
Ofer Marder Archaeological Division, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
Amihai Mazar – Professor Emeritus, The Institute of Archaeology, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Gabriel Mazor – Israel Antiquities Authority
Chris McKinny – Texas A&M University Corpus Christi
Linda G. Meiberg University of Pennsylvania
Yoel Melamed Archaeobotanical lab, Institute of Archaeology, The Martin (Szusz) Department of
Land of Israel Studies and Archaeology Bar-Ilan University
Ianir Milevski Israel Antiquities Authority
Pierre de Miroschedji Directeur de recherche honoraire au CNRS, UMR 7041, Paris-Nanterre
Robert A. Mullins Azusa Pacific University
Beth Alpert Nakhai University of Arizona
Dvory Namdar – Institute of Earth Science, Department of Geology, Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Estelle Orrelle University of East London
Steven M. Ortiz – Tandy Institute for Archaeology, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
Nava Panitz-Cohen The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Itzhak Paz Israel Antiquities Authority
Kate Raphael Fredy & Nadine Hermann Institute of Earth Sciences, The Hebrew University of
Jerusalem
Steven A. Rosen Archaeological Division, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
Maura Sala Independent Scholar
Thomas Schneider Department of Classical, Near Eastern and Religious Studies University of British
Columbia
Omer Sergi Tel Aviv University
Ruth Shahak-Gross – Dept. of Maritime Civilizations, Recanati Institute for Maritime, Studies,
University of Haifa
Cynthia Shafer-Elliott – William Jessup University
Itzhaq Shai Institute of Archaeology, Ariel University, Israel
Ariel Shatil The Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the Israel Antiquities Authority
Roi Shavit Archaeological Division, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev
Lily Singer-Avitz – Tel Aviv University
Philipp W. Stockhammer – Institut für Vor- und Frühgeschichtliche Archäologie und
Provinzialrömische Archäologie , Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Germany
xi
LIST OF CONTRIBUTORS
Marvin A. Sweeney Professor of Hebrew Bible, Claremont School of Theology
Nahshon Szanton – Israel Antiquities Authority
Eitan Tchernov (z”l) Israel Antiquities Authority
David Ussishkin Professor Emeritus, Tel Aviv University
Joe Uziel Israel Antiquities Authority
Josephine A. Verducci – University of Melbourne
Paula Waiman-Barak – University of Haifa
Ehud Weiss – Archaeobotanical lab, Institute of Archaeology, The Martin (Szusz) Department of Land
of Israel Studies and Archaeology Bar-Ilan University
Stefan Jakob Wimmer – Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
Samuel R. Wolff – W.F. Albright Institute of Archaeological Research
Naama Yahalom-Mack The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Joseph Yellin The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
K. Lawson Younger Jr. – Trinity International University – Divinity School
Irit Ziffer – Eretz Israel Museum, Tel Aviv
Sharon Zuckerman (z”l) The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Wolfgang Zwickel – Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz
xii
INTRODUCTION
We are delighted and privileged to present this Festschrift volume in honor of our friend, teacher
and colleague, Aren M. Maeir, on the occasion of his sixtieth birthday in March of 2018. The
lengthy collection herein features over sixty studies by more than ninety authors from a wide variety of
academic fields, including archaeology, history, bible and other areas of scientific and ancient
studies. Each contributor is one of Aren’s many friends and collaborators, and quite a few have also
been his students or have benefited from his unique style of mentoring. To a woman, and to a man, the
list of contributors in our Table of Contents join the Festschrift editors in congratulating Aren on a
remarkable career and a life well lived, thus far, with our best wishes for many happy and productive
years to come. To us, and to his many other friends everywhere, indeed to all who know him, Aren is
the quintessential example of “a real Mensch.”
Aren Maeir Maeir was born in Rochester, New York, and made aliyah to Israel with his family
at age 11. He grew up in Jerusalem, served his country honorably in the Israel Defense Forces,
and married Adina Hartman, with whom he has shared a wonderful life in Israel, raised three
remarkable sons, and now enjoys his grandchildren. After his military service, Aren graduated from
the Hebrew University of Jerusalem with a BA, MA, and PhD in Archaeology. His field experience
included work at several sites around Israel, most notably Beit Shean where he excavated with
his “archaeology father” mentor and friend Amihai Mazar. He then began teaching at Bar-Ilan
University in Ramat Gan, advancing from lecturer to full professor of archaeology in a
dozen years. There he presides over his renowned subterranean archaeology lab and continues
teaching twenty years on, having become an “archaeology father” himself. Many of his students
have completed their own MA and PhD programs, and gone on to make their own contributions in
the profession, the academy, and the field including three of the editors of this volume (IS. AD and
JU).
In 1996, Professor Maeir launched his major life’s work – a long term archaeological
expedition at Tel Tzafit (Tell es-Safi), the massive mound of ancient Gath, situated where the
Shephelah of Judah meets the southern coastal plain. The Tell es-Safi/Gath Archaeological Project,
also known as the Ackerman Family Bar-Ilan University Expedition to Gath, has excavated annually,
each summer, for over twenty years at the ancient Canaanite and Philistine citadel. And “the dig”
is still going. Aren has gradually gathered and deftly led an international staff of experts, great friends
who are fiercely loyal to him and to “Safi,” as we call both the site and the project. And literally
thousands of students from Israel and around the world have trained in archaeological technique at
“Safi” under his directorship.
Everyone who works with Aren comes to know and admire his unique blend of light
hearted and even comic exchange, blended with his serious and cutting edge scientific
scholarship. And that combination manifests itself both in personal relationships and professional
matters. He is the power source of the dynamic and open-minded atmosphere of his excavation
project, and it is his own approach and personality, as much as the remarkable site of Tel Tzafit, which
has attracted his staff and the other multitudes of scholars and students to the expedition. Many of
these, who start out as young volunteers, are encouraged by him to conduct their own research on
materials from the excavation or on related topics. These studies often cross the boundaries of
traditional archaeological inquiry, moving into topics such as historical sources, historical
geography, geomorphology, ethnoarchaeology, and the application of laboratory science to the
excavation field.
INTRODUCTION
The broad scope of “Safi related” research is a natural outcome of another remarkable
fact: successfully working with Aren requires efforts beyond those which archaeology normally
demands. His management style is to designate crucial roles for team members, both younger and
older, and to leave ample space for their own personal performance, expression, and even error. To put
it succinctly, Aren doesn’t just do archaeology, he makes archaeologists. And he approaches it with his
own philosophical attitude which is perhaps best expressed in his own frequent quip, well known to all
who work with him: “There’s no sense in doing archaeology if we’re not having fun!”
Over the course of two decades, Professor Maeir has become recognized as a world class
scholar and expert on the archaeology of ancient Israel, Philistia, and the Bronze and Iron ages. He is
sought out for interviews by television, radio, and print media whenever a new discovery makes the
headlines. His international teaching experience includes a post-doctoral fellowship at M.I.T. in
Cambridge MA, an appointment as a distinguished visiting professor at the University of California,
San Diego, and lectures and workshops at dozens of universities and other venues across
America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. He has received a dozen other fellowships and grants for his
academic and research efforts, and was recently presented with the 2016 Distinguished Researcher
Award from the Rector of Bar-Ilan University.
At age sixty, Aren is also the author of a vast amount of scholarly publications, including his
two monographs: Bronze and Iron Age Tombs at Tel Gezer (2004) and In the Midst of the Jordan: The
Jordan Valley During the Middle Bronze Age (2010). The eight contributor volumes he has edited or
co-edited include his most recent efforts, The Shephelah During the Iron Age: Recent
Archaeological Studies (with Oded Lipschits, 2017) and Wandering Arameans: Arameans Outside
Syria Textual and Archaeological Perspectives (with Angelika Berlejung, 2017) as well as the
BAS award winning first volume of his excavation report series, Tell es-Safi/Gath I: Report
on the 1996–2005 Seasons (2012) and the forthcoming second volume, Tell es-Safi/Gath II:
Excavation Reports and Studies (with Joe Uziel, now in press). These are joined by scores of
academic articles, solely and co-authored, spanning an impressive variety of archaeological,
historical, biblical, and scientific subjects. These articles were published in various academic
journals including the most prestigious peer-reviewed journals and all the way to popular stages. Aren
seems to know something about almost everything.
Many of the contributors to this present volume have been co-authors of other articles with
Aren. Their diverse studies here are divided into ten thematic sections, each inspired by subjects of
Aren’s own interest, and most with a biblical quotation as part of the section title. Section 1, “The
Rising Urban Entities,” focuses on the Early Bronze Age in Canaan, an essentially protohistoric
period locally, but which is well represented in Aren’s work at Tel Tzafit. Section 2, “The Canaanite
was then in the land …,” moves to the Middle and Late Bronze Ages, also well represented at “Safi,”
and the focus of a great deal of Aren’s own work, including his PhD dissertation. Section 3
highlights “The Origins, Material Culture, and Interactions of the Philistines” when Aren began his
career he could not have guessed it would focus so much on the Sea Peoples and their descendants in
Philistia. Section 4 continues that theme, “Entering the third decade of the Tell es-Safi/
Gath Archaeological Project.” Section 5 moves to an area of Aren’s more recent exploration, “The
Aramean Realm.” Section 6 proceeds to “New Perspectives on the Biblical Accounts,” and Section
7 explores “Textual and Archaeological Research of the Iron Age.” Section 8, with
emphasis on “Methodological Approaches” to archaeology, and the “Reports on
Archaeological Excavations and Finds” of Section 9, lead naturally into the concluding theme of
Section 10: “Discover how to visit the past and bring yesterday’s stories into our lives today.”
The editors offer our sincere thanks to these contributing scholars from Israel and around
the world who took of their time and talent to present our discipline with a few valuable gems for each
xiv
INTRODUCTION
section, in honor of our teacher, mentor, colleague, friend, and real Mensch, Aren Maeir. In addition,
this book could not have been made possible without the help of many other individuals, who assisted
in its production: Edna Sachar, who language edited selected articles, Dr. Eli Even of the Bar Ilan
University Research Authority and private individuals for financial support, and Profs. Stefan Wimmer
and Wolfgang Zwickel for their help in the publication project and agreeing to publish the volume
in the AAT series. We would also like to thank Dr. Kai A. Metzler for his editorial comments and
guidance throughout the editing process. For all of those involved, it was a pleasure to be able to
be part of such a project for such a special scholar and individual!
The Editors
xv
OVER TWO DECADES OF FRIENDSHIP, FIELDWORK, AND
COMRADERY WITH AREN MAEIR
Ahuva Ho
In the spring of 1995 while I was working on my PhD in Hebrew Bible, I joined my professor Tammy
Schneider of the Claremont Graduate School in California on the survey of Tell es-Safi or Tel Tzafit (the
name was not yet determined, but I shall refer to it here as Tell Gath). It was a preliminary introduction
in the hope that it would launch the renewal of an organized archaeological excavation the following year
based on our survey. The excavation was set to be in cooperation with Prof. Aren Maeir of Bar-Ilan
University. This is where I first met Aren. Unfortunately, the collaboration was called off and Aren
returned to the tell forging projects with other institutes.
I joined Prof. Schneider on other excavations in Israel because of my commitment to my
academic program. However, once free from my obligations I contacted Aren and he was more than
happy to have me back. The two of us are the only survivors left from that first year of survey, and ever
since, for over twenty years, I have been volunteering at Tell Gath and enjoying every moment. We have
spent many hours deep into the night in the field to secure the countless finds that needed to be unearthed,
recorded, measured, photographed, and boxed.
Aren has been an inspiration as a scholar and a friend. He has enriched our knowledge of the
Philistines in general and Gath in particular by employing a plethora of scientific media and collaborating
with top scientists from Israel and abroad (as noted in an interview by Heidi J. Gleit: “The Science of
Archaeology,” Eretz Magazine 150 (2015): 20-27). He has brought excitement to the field and an
enthusiasm that keeps volunteers coming back. It is my delight to congratulate Aren on his 60th birthday,
who has made my twenty-plus years at Gath educational and enjoyable.
Here’s to you Aren! Happy 60th!
ResearchGate has not been able to resolve any citations for this publication.
Section 3 highlights "The Origins, Material Culture, and Interactions of the Philistines" -when Aren began his career he could not have guessed it would focus so much on the Sea Peoples and their descendants in Philistia. Section 4 continues that theme
  • Aren
Aren. Their diverse studies here are divided into ten thematic sections, each inspired by subjects of Aren's own interest, and most with a biblical quotation as part of the section title. Section 1, "The Rising Urban Entities," focuses on the Early Bronze Age in Canaan, an essentially protohistoric period locally, but which is well represented in Aren's work at Tel Tzafit. Section 2, "The Canaanite was then in the land …," moves to the Middle and Late Bronze Ages, also well represented at "Safi," and the focus of a great deal of Aren's own work, including his PhD dissertation. Section 3 highlights "The Origins, Material Culture, and Interactions of the Philistines" -when Aren began his career he could not have guessed it would focus so much on the Sea Peoples and their descendants in Philistia. Section 4 continues that theme, "Entering the third decade of the Tell es-Safi/ Gath Archaeological Project." Section 5 moves to an area of Aren's more recent exploration, "The Aramean Realm." Section 6 proceeds to "New Perspectives on the Biblical Accounts," and Section 7 explores "Textual and Archaeological Research of the Iron Age." Section 8, with emphasis on "Methodological Approaches" to archaeology, and the "Reports on Archaeological Excavations and Finds" of Section 9, lead naturally into the concluding theme of Section 10: "Discover how to visit the past and bring yesterday's stories into our lives today." The editors offer our sincere thanks to these contributing scholars from Israel and around the world who took of their time and talent to present our discipline with a few valuable gems for each