uncovering ancient Jerusalem
13.6 Reese goes down a shaft
13.6 Bucket line
13.6 Diggers smile
13.6 Brent and Omrit
13.6 Amir and Kyle
13.6 Dry sifting
13.6 Dig workers
13.5 Inside a cave
13.5 Morning on the dig site
13.5 Dig Site View North
13.5 Dig Site View Northeast
Dec Slide 12
Dec Slide 11
Dec Slide 9
Dec Slide 5
Dec Slide 4
Nov Slide 9
Slide 10.10
Slide 10.9
Slide 10.3
Slide 19
Slide 20

KDC Awareness Spreads

On Dec. 31, 2012, the second phase of Dr. Eilat Mazar’s excavation on the Ophel officially concluded, but public awareness of the dig both in Jerusalem and within the online archaeological community continues to grow.

Our most recent feature video, “Conclusion of the Ophel Excavation 2012,” in which Dr. Mazar summarizes her thoughts on the excavation, has been publicized by several online archaeological and biblical sites this month.

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Most recently, the Biblical Archaeology Society, producers of the monthly periodical Biblical Archaeology Review, posted an article about the video on their website at www.biblicalarchaeology.org.

“The Ophel in Jerusalem sits at the heart of Biblical archaeology,” the Biblical Archaology Society staff wrote January 15. “The site’s rich research history stretches back to Charles Warren in the 1860s, and the Ophel continues to yield incredible discoveries to this day. The most recent Ophel excavation season, directed by Dr. Eilat Mazar, wrapped up on December 31, 2012, and archaeologists with the Herbert W. Armstrong College produced the following video on their informative website, The Key to David’s City.”

The article goes on to link to our website and embeds our concluding feature video. It also links to Dr. Mazar’s published works and several of her articles that have appeared previously in Biblical Archaeology Review.

Exploring Bible Lands also
highlighted the video in their Exploring Bible Lands 2
2012 Archaeology News” post and Popular Archaeology published an article January 7 featuring the proto-aeolic capital, or royal Israelite capital fragment discovered in the course of Dr. Mazar’s excavation.

Several popular travel and personal blogs also picked us up earlier this month, including Ferrell’s Travel Blog (“Ophel Excavation 2012”), Luke Chandler’s Blog (“Short Video on the Ophel Excavations in Jerusalem”) and Fr. Stephen Smuts (“Ophel Excavation 2012”).

Conclusion of the Ophel Excavation 2012

Area A supervisor Amir Kohen Klonymus describes a fire pit discovered on the Ophel Excavation that was filled with ash, pieces of pottery, pieces of wood and what appears to be grapes that could date to almost three thousand years ago. Ophel Excavation sponsors Daniel Mintz and Meredith Berkman and their family also visit the site, while Dr. Eilat Mazar gives a summation of this phase of the dig.

Who’s Reading KDC?

It’s been four months since our first post and the news of our excavation experience continues to spread through the efforts of Popular Archaeology as well as other online archaeological communities.

On November 30, popular-archaeology.com published an article summarizing our post “Exposing the First Temple Period.” The article highlighted Dr. Mazar’s excitement over reaching first temple period floors that have yielded an abundance of 10th century BCE pottery, as well as exposing walls that reveal the use of a very large structure. The article said, “Like the other structures within the vicinity, a building of possible monumental proportions may be emerging. … Mazar and others suggest [these] may be the remains of structures attributed to builders during the period of King Solomon in the 10th century BCE.”

The periodical also explained part of the success of the excavation so far: “The new finds are consistent with the spectacular finds already uncovered in previous excavation seasons in this, the “Ophel” area of old Jerusalem, just below and south of the current Temple Mount ….”

In addition, HolyLandPhotos’ Blog also promoted the same video post along with another video post, “Restoring Byzantine Pottery.” They spotlighted Dr. Mazar’s quote about the accumulation of pottery found from the first temple period being perhaps the largest assemblage in Jerusalem so far. Another site, bibleplaces.com, mentioned our post “The 10th Century B.C.E. Scarab” in their “Weekend Roundup.”

With a few weeks of digging left, we’ll look forward to sharing more finds with the archaeological community and our interested audience.