Jul 1, 2016

Shiloh Excavation to Reopen

Aerial Photo of Shiloh (Khirbet Seilûn).
Photo by Barry Kramer. Used by permission of ABR.
Associates for Biblical Research are reopening the excavations at Shiloh (Khirbet Seilûn), in May 21 - June 17, 2017 under the direction of Dr. Scott Stripling. For the goals and implications for biblical research see LINK

Shiloh was Israel's first capital for 369 years according to the Talmud (Zevachim 118B). It was the place where Joshua erected the Tabernacle (dwelling place, Heb. Mishkan; or Tent of Meeting, Heb. 'Ohel Mo'ed, Joshua 18ff) and where the Promised land was divided among the tribes; where the Lord's yearly festival was celebrated and the Israelites brought sacrificial offering; and the prophet Samuel ministered.The Ark of the Covenant was captured by the Philistines according to 1 Samuel 4:1-10.

Israelite houses from about 1050 BC. Large vessels in situ.
Wall of house in the background. Kjaer, Hans Andersen.
“Shiloh a Summary Report of the Second Danish Expedition,
1929.” Palestine Exploration Quarterly 63, no. 2 (1931): 74.
In 1922 soundings were first done at Shiloh (Khirbet Seilûn), Israel by Aage Schmidt. Then a formal excavation was carried out by the Danes under the the direction of Hans Kjær and supervised by W.F. Albright from 1926-1932. Another probe was made in 1963 by Sven Holm-Nielson and Marie-Louise Buhl. Israel Finkelstein excavated at Shiloh from 1981 to 1984 and published the most extensive report on his findings in Finkelstein, Israel, Shelomoh Bunimovits, Zvi Lederman, and Baruch Brandl, eds. Shiloh: The Archaeology of a Biblical Site. Monograph Series of the Institute of Archaeology 10. Tel Aviv, Israel: Institute of Archaeology of Tel Aviv University, 1993. Dr. Ze'ev Yeivin excavated the area he believed was associated with the location of the Tabernacle in 1982, but his strata was dated to a later period. More work is needed.

A mosaic floor in a Byzantine church (ca. 380-420 AD) was discovered just south of Shiloh in 2006 and 2007 under the direction of  the Archaeological Staff Officer for Judea and Samaria in Israel's Civilian Administration Antiquities Unit. See Ahuva Balofsky, "Tabernacle Evidence Unearthed in Shiloh." Breaking Israel News July 3, 2013. LINK

For a Occupational overview and many nice photos of the site see Bible Walks  LINK

See also The Shiloh website LINK

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