Jan 20, 2010

Herodian Stones

After a two day rain delay we were back on the tall again. Found a piece of oil lamp (Roman ?) but the big news is there is a destruction layer under the pavement stones on the outside edge. The foundation layer (bottom two courses) look very Herodian while the stuff on the top is larger and different type construction. It looks like the foundation is Herodian while the top could belong to Antipas. The archaeology matches the primary sources exactly. Upon Herod the Great’s death in 4 BC, insurrectionists burned the city, and in 13 AD his son Herod Antipas rebuilt it (Josephus Ant. 18.27) as an administrative centre (Harold W. Hoehner, Herod Antipas: A Contemporary of Jesus Christ [Grand Rapids: Zondervan Academie Books, 1980], 47-48; Morten Hørning Jensen, Herod Antipas in Galilee: The Literary and Archaeological Sources on the Reign of Herod Antipas and its Socio-economic Impact on Galilee [Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2006], 10).

From the excavations today I can say that the foundation level was destroyed prior to the top section being rebuilt. The evidence matches the primary sources exactly. The archaeological evidence supports the argument for the site being Livias.

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