Analysis of altar residue shows worshippers burned pot at a Judahite desert shrine – and may have done the same at the First Temple in Jerusalem
The Land of Israel has been a playground for archeologists seeking to uncover ancient ruins and artifacts since the mid-nineteenth century.
Israel’s archaeological digs mostly center on the excavation of sites mentioned in the Bible. Since the beginning of the twentieth century, remains of ancient settlements have also been excavated.
Archeology in the region expanded during the British Mandate period (1917 – 1948) and has increased with the founding of the modern state of Israel.
One of the most important discoveries has been that of the Dead Sea Scrolls, between 1947–1956, in caves in Qumran, near Jericho, which revealed some of the earliest copies of the books of the Bible.
Israel hosts a number of important Biblical and historic sites. Archeological digs have uncovered remains from the biblical cities of Hatzor, Megiddo, Be’er Sheva, Tiberias, Masada, and Herodian.
Archeological research in Israel has been used as an important tool to build up the modern state and has helped establish historical links between the Jewish people, the Bible and land of Israel.
Archeology in Israel involves the systematic investigation of all remains from the country’s past, from the prehistoric era to the end of Ottoman rule in Palestine.
Since Israel was historically situated at the crossroads between Africa and the East, and served as a land bridge between the prosperous cultures of the Fertile Crescent (now Iraq) and Egypt, archeological artifacts from some of history’s most important civilizations and developments have been found in the region.
In all, there are over 20,000 recognized antiquities sites in Israel, and the Israel Antiquities Authority is charged with ensuring the protection of these sites and in issuing licenses for the excavation.
Today’s Jews and Arabs in Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, and parts of Syria get half their ancestry from Bronze Age Levantines, who descended from a mix of locals and migrants from Iran or the Caucasus
Nothing remains of the 3,500-year-old Canaanite mud-city of Yerza but scattered pottery and this gloating triumph from the past, now found by a 6-year-old boy
The putative Church of the Apostles is now in a lagoon peopled by catfish but the ruins where Jesus’ disciples may have lived haven’t been damaged, reassures archaeologist Motti Aviam
The spread of the house mouse from Near East to Europe coincided with the advent of early farming and grain storage. Guess who came along for the ride?
Checking beneath the floor of a Byzantine structure in ancient Jerusalem, the archaeologists found a strange system of rooms carved in the early Roman period
But spike of ear infections in Chalcolithic could indicate that adding dairy to our diet gave us more than a calcium boost
Remains of a modern human 45,000 years old found in the Balkans show our ancestors coexisted with Neanderthals in Europe for around 8,000 years
Out of over 22,000 ancient coins found in Jerusalem, only four were ‘minted’ by the Bar Kochba rebels – who evidently never made it into the city
Israeli archaeologists date the remnants of flourishing agriculture in the desert and discover exactly when, and possibly why, it came to a bitter end
Patriarchate wants archaeology museum operating since the 1990s shut, claiming it didn't know it ever opened
WATCH: How oldest Torah scroll found in a synagogue was read despite being burned to a crisp ■ Now manuscripts from the Second Temple Period that are too brittle to even touch may be deciphered using cutting-edge physics
Scenes of hunting in the Paleolithic are common, but this is only the third known instance in which the aftermath with innards on display is shown too
Neolithic hunter-gatherers who erected massive monoliths in central Turkey 11,500 years ago had command of geometry and a much more complex society than previously thought, archaeologists say
Archaeological surprise: Hunter-gatherers of the region had pottery thousands of years before settling down – and an unexpected range of culinary culture. But without animals, where did they get dairy from?
There are differences between male and female fingerprints, and the potters of Early Bronze Age Gath didn’t always trouble to wipe them off their work
The Natufians were the first to bury their dead in cemeteries, albeit in shallow graves, and mysterious slabs were placed in and above some graves. One found in Raqefet Cave bore an enigmatic engraving that may hint at elaborate ritual
Shaped stone spheres were part of early humanity’s toolkit for over two million years, but what exactly they were used for has remained an enigma. Until now
A letter from a high official in Jerusalem to the Jewish garrison on Elephantine in fifth century B.C.E. Egypt is the oldest known ex-biblical account of the Pesach ritual
There were two early monkey lineages in South America, not one. One lineage became the adorable platyrrhini and one went extinct
Could Neanderthals make rafts? Three-ply cord fragment found in the Abri du Maras cave is 41,000 to 52,000 years old and indicates complexity in thinking and manufacture
Why the ancients used eggs from savage wild ostriches rather than innocuous tame ones is unclear, but ornate eggshells from the Middle East were prized by elites across the Mediterranean thousands of years before Easter was a thing
Ancient Egypt had intimate relations with Canaan, and most of the Semitic peoples migrating there would have been Canaanite. But not all.
Sequencing from a second tooth ‘only’ 800,000 years old provided researchers with key information on the position of the enigmatic Homo antecessor in our evolutionary tree
Archaeologists deduce purpose of huge walled fish ponds on an artificial island built by the powerful Calusa kingdom over 1,000 years ago
Israeli archives remind us that the first Hebrew city has seen empty, police-patrolled streets before – beginning in Mandatory times
While cleaning for Passover, the unnamed repentant dusted off the 2,000-year-old weapon he had stolen as a rebellious teenager from the City of David and gave it back to the antiquities authority
Mysterious bone circle built 25,000 years ago from the remains of at least 60 mammoths seems to have been too big – and smelly – to be a dwelling, archaeologists posit
All scroll fragments at the Museum of the Bible in Washington turn out to be fakes: Experts explain how we know the massive trove of scrolls held in Jerusalem is genuine
'We’re victims, we’re victims of misrepresentation, we’re victims of fraud,' museum CEO Harry Hargrove says over Dead Sea Scrolls investigation