Free download of volume on history of ancient Israel

Jim West has been kind enough to point out that the recent volume “Understanding the History of Ancient Israel” edited by H. Williamson (Proceedings of the British Academy 143) is available online.  

The volume contains a collection of articles on the history and archaeology of ancient Israel, particularly during the 9th century BCE.

The articles represent a wide range of research perspectives, and cover a very interesting and important spectrum of topics. My favorite article is by A. Mazar – whose outlook on the interface between archaeological evidence and biblical text to a large extent mirrors mine.

Needless to say, the very big (and in fact glaring) lacuna in this volume is a lack of sufficient attention to Philistia and the Philistines during the 9th cent BCE – and how this can reflects on our knowledge of biblical Israel. Clearly – Tell es-Safi/Gath and our astounding finds from the 9th century (in particular, the siege and destruction of the site by Hazael, of Aram, dating to the late 9th/early 8th century BCE) have important ramifications on both the history of Israel and its environs in the 9th century (such as aspects relating to chronology), reflects importantly on the historicity of relevant passages in the biblical narrative (such as its relevance to Amos 6:2), and is probably the most important historical/archaeological/biblical “datum” line for this period in the Southern Land of Israel….

In any case, I suggest checking the volume out – its for free!


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