Palestinians and Philistines

As I’ve clarified many times before, there is no cultural (and genetic) connection between the ancient Philistines and the contemporary Palestinians – save for that the Palestinians are people who live in the area which from Graeco-Roman times was known as Philistia – in itself a toponym which remembers the presence of the Philistine culture in the southern Coastal Plain during the Iron Age.

But now, I think we have a good connection!

I’ve been informed that due to the missiles that the Palestinians in Gaza are firing towards Ashdod, the Museum of Philistine Culture in Ashdod is still closed! Is nothing sacred? :-)

And if on this topic – do you think that the tunnel diggers in Gaza have collected the archaeological finds that were found during their excavations? One can only wonder what they have found during this escapades….

Some things never change…

Just to show that some things never change, here is a picture (on the right) of a one of the PEF surveyors in the 19th cent CE, measuring with a Theodolite under an umbrella, while working on the Survey of Western Palestine (and which serves as the symbol of the PEF) – and next to it (on the left), Jill Katz (YU), director of Area P at Tell es-Safi/Gath, measuring with a Total Station, working as well under an umbrella.

As I said, some things, such as the hot sun in the Levant, never change…

 IMG_2388PEF symbol


Rocket men (and women)…

For all those of you who bravely participated in archaeological excavations in Israel this summer during and despite the hostilities in Gaza, and continued excavating despite the falling rockets – and in particular those of you who were in the regions near Gaza – here’s a song for you.

You are all officially Rocket Men (or women) – OK – Rocket people


A neat seal from this season!

We are about to bring in a bunch of finds from this year’s season for conservation in the HU conservation lab, and before they are sent it, I thought a nice, preliminary picture of a beautiful conical seal which was found by Louise’s team (in Jo’s square) in the early Iron Age levels in Area A – would be very nice to show. This is a type that is known from other early Iron Age Philistine contexts, and has decoration, and some hieroglyphs, and the various sides. Once it’s cleaned and documented, we’ll eventually publish more details about it. Meanwhile – enjoy it! :-)

So – here it is:

conical seal 2014 temp picture small