Trojan Idol Figurine

Trojan Idol Figurine


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Trojan Idol Figurine - History

Something I find to be interesting is the similarity of the Judean Pillar Figures to those of the Sumerian Temple Figures. While they are not as refined as the Sumerian ones they are still similar.

As some suggested they could represent a female idol, perhaps a food grinder, a child’s toy and more. I have not looked into the Judean Pillar Figures before but it would be interesting to know the context as to where they are typically found. Perhaps the location they were found could help solve the mystery.

This might be a stretch yet here is a thought that came to my mind and ties in with the Sumerian Temple Figures. The Sumerian Temple Figures are noted for their eyes (typically big eyes) and hands folded in prayer just under the chest. Just a quick scan of various articles about Judean Pillar Figurines the eyes are often mentioned and just by looking at them one can see the position of the arms and hands.

Abraham was born in Ur of the Chaldees in Mesopotamia. Temple figures were very common in Mesopotamia. Perhaps the Sumerian votive figurine tradition continued to be practiced amongst Jewish women at that time.

It is my understanding that Mosaic Law recognized women’s responsibility to be in the home as wives and mothers to the family, yet did not exclude women from religious service. Jewish women just weren’t allowed to participate as actively as men in regard to worship but they were allowed to observe the ceremonies they were not allowed to be a part of. The Jewish husbands were to be the spiritual leaders of their households and to intercede for their wives when it came to communicating with God. However, the Old Testament is filled with instances where women took it upon themselves to pray to God directly to open their womb and give them a child.

Could it be possible that these Judean Pillar Figurines are actually votive statues expressing a religious vow, wish, or desire in regard to having children? And like their Sumerian Temple Figurine counterparts are in perpetual prayer in regard to this vow, wish, or desire?

Or couldn’t they be devices to hold or display the women’s jewelry of the day, like armlets and necklaces?

Looking at what everyone wrote–the point is that any of these could be true. We simply have no idea. Unless you find a statuette that says “Queen Consort of G-d” or something the idol theory is a theory. And assumign it’s an idol–whcih idol? I have no idea what that whole Sheba thing is about–malkat sh’va, whoever she and wherever she was from, was a real person with whom sh’lomo (Solomon) had a relationship. She was not a goddess.

But back to the Judean thing. It is true that nobody was calling malkhut y’huda Judea in the First Temple period. But it is also true that the Latin word for Judah (y’huda) was Judea. The Jews weren’t calling their country or Land Judea in the 1st Century BCE, so I’m not sure why we care that the Romans did. But to the extent we want to use the Latin name, it is the same name. But I can hear an argument that you want to differentiate because the borders and make-up of malkhut y’huda in the First Temple were very different than the later country the Romans called Judea. What did the Maccabees call it? Wasn’t it yisrael?

I definitely agree with Clark (#5)– Occam’s razor might rule on this one. I’ve played with my Barbies back in the 1970s, and the physical resemblance is striking, plus the concept of having multiple similar dolls per household. Nothing new under the sun– JPFs as ancient Barbie dolls, with the same potential for affecting girls’ developing concepts of body image, strikes me as a very useful null hypothesis.

The bigger question, in a sense: are Barbie dolls what God would consider teraphim? How close are our own modern playthings, in our own hearts, to what the Old Testament refers to as idols?

TERAPHIM
Family gods or idols. (Ge 31:30, 34) Although in the plural, the designation “teraphim” can also apply to a single idol. At least some of these idols may have been the size and shape of a man. (1Sa 19:13, 16) Others must have been much smaller, able to fit inside a woman’s saddle basket. (Ge 31:34) The teraphim were, on occasion, consulted for omens.—Eze 21:21 Zec 10:2.
The findings of archaeologists in Mesopotamia and adjacent areas indicate that the possession of the teraphim images had a bearing on who would receive the family inheritance. According to one tablet found at Nuzi, the possession of the household gods could under certain circumstances entitle a son-in-law to appear in court and claim the estate of his deceased father-in-law. (Ancient Near Eastern Texts, edited by J. Pritchard, 1974, pp. 219, 220, and ftn 51) Perhaps Rachel, with this in mind, reasoned that she was justified in taking the teraphim because of her father’s deceptive dealings with her husband Jacob. (Compare Ge 31:14-16.) The importance of the teraphim with respect to inheritance rights would also explain why Laban was so anxious to recover them, even to the point of taking his brothers with him and pursuing Jacob for a distance of seven days’ journey. (Ge 31:19-30) Of course, what Rachel had done was completely unknown to Jacob (Ge 31:32), and there is no indication that he ever attempted to use the teraphim to gain the inheritance from Laban’s sons. Jacob had nothing to do with idols. At the latest, the teraphim would have been disposed of when Jacob hid all the foreign gods turned over to him by his household under the big tree that was close to Shechem.—Ge 35:1-4.
In Israel the idolatrous use of teraphim existed in the days of the Judges as well as the kings. (Jg 17:5 18:14, 17, 20 Ho 3:4) It is not likely, though, that the teraphim served for purposes of inheritance in Israel, in view of God’s express command against the making of images. (Ex 20:4) Also, the prophet Samuel spoke of teraphim in parallel with uncanny power, comparing the use of both to pushing ahead presumptuously (1Sa 15:23), and the teraphim were among the appendages of idolatry cleared out of Judah and Jerusalem by faithful King Josiah. (2Ki 23:24) Hence, the fact that Michal, the wife of David, had a teraphim image among her possessions suggests that her heart was not complete with Jehovah and that David either did not know about her having the teraphim image or else tolerated it because she was the daughter of King Saul.—1Sa 19:12, 13.
http://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/1200275740

Could this be the archtype of thel Maiden Form Bra, that “lifts and separates”?

Am I the only one that sees these figurines as possibly a grinding tool of some sort? The top portion being the grip while the flat portion being used to grind grains and such. As for jews following other gods/idols,the scriptures are full of them doing this very thing at times. God did have a name before Moses. He was called El or El Shaddi, respectfully.

These figurines are not ‘poorly understood’, well at least not by those of us who can open our eyes.

In reality these models are icons of the Queen of Heaven. If you read the Book of Jeremiah, you will see that the big debate and dispute between the people and the priesthood is that the people worshipped the Queen of Heaven (Malketh Shamem), and Jeremiah did not like this. And the Jews who worshipped the Queen of Heaven moved to Egypt (and then Saba), which is why these figurines end in Judaea at this time.

Interestingly, if you translate Queen of the Heaven into Egyptian, the title becomes the Queen of Sheba. This is why it is likely that these people moved down to Saba (Sheba) and founded the Sabaean nation at this time. There is no archaeological evidence for Saba being founded in the 9th century BC.

According to the Bible, Abrahams’ father made idols, but one God spoke to him and he followed instructions to move around. God din’t have a name until He spoke to Moses… He was just the God of Abraham, Isaac & Jacob. Bible says one of the reasons God took them out of Egypt was because they worshipped other gods, and they kept doing so until after they were captive in Babylon. I suspect the little statues are fertility goddesses or charms. That was important to women, and I think men would worship their god(s) more ostentatiously.

So Yahweh didn’t start out as the “one true god”? Interesting.


Для показа рекламных объявлений Etsy по интересам используются технические решения сторонних компаний.

Мы привлекаем к этому партнеров по маркетингу и рекламе (которые могут располагать собранной ими самими информацией). Отказ не означает прекращения демонстрации рекламы Etsy или изменений в алгоритмах персонализации Etsy, но может привести к тому, что реклама будет повторяться чаще и станет менее актуальной. Подробнее в нашей Политике в отношении файлов Cookie и схожих технологий.


ORIGINS- "What Does History Say?"

Now some of us may keep our eye simple, but what of those who may be overly interested with a certain genre of books, music or movies to the point we form an unhealthy obsession of it? It does happen, many times to younger ones such as young self impressionable girls becoming obsessed with the latest pop sensation on the airwaves or the hot guy in the latest blockbuster.

And what of the obsessed sports fan? Those who decorate their entire house in their favorite team, never miss a game and would get into a fist fight with anyone who makes fun of their team….yes, you guessed it, another form of idolatry.

The same sign of the cross that Rome now worships was used in the Babylonian Mysteries, was applied by Paganism to the same magic purposes, was honoured with the same honours. That which is now called the Christian cross was originally no Christian emblem at all, but was the mystic Tau of the Chaldeans and Egyptians--the true original form of the letter T--the initial of the name of Tammuz--which, in Hebrew, radically the same as ancient Chaldee, was

Intricate Wooden Figurine [Cleric]

I was wondering, was my Wooden Figurine ready for a upgrade?

It never did change at all since i first got it.

Intricate Wooden Figurine
Slot: Charm
AC:6
STA+ 4 CHA+ 3 WIS+ 4 AGI+ 3 HP+ 24 MANA+ 30
Fire 3 Dis 3 cold 3 mag 3 poison 3

Not at all like the one listed above.

I haven't played EQ in over a year, I just recently started playing EQ again. Since it has been so long ago since I played I forgot what flags I have gotten. I was wantting to upgrade my Intricate Wooden Figurine but can't seem to figure it out even after reading all the above post. I cut and copied what I tried doing to show anyone that might understand it, to help me figure out what I am doing wrong.

Logging to 'eqlog.txt' is now *ON*.
Ziebra says out of character, 'any KEI?'
Kassar says out of character, 'donating for Conv for me and pet pst '
Targeted (NPC): Seer Mal Nae`Shi
Right click on the NPC to consider her.
You say, 'Hail, Seer Mal Nae`Shi'
Seer Mal Nae`Shi snaps from her meditation, 'Greetings traveler, I am Mal Nae`Shi. I have come here to heighten my awareness through meditation, much can be learned through a brief exploration of one's self. Assuming there is something there to learn. While reaching inner peace is a journey each spirit must undertake on its own, I can begin your voyage with [guided meditation] which will aid your memory, once you are seated. I can also [unlock] some [memories] which may previously been inaccessible.'
You say, 'unlock memories'
You manage to recover some images from your childhood, but no recent events spark a memory.
You say, 'guided meditation'
You have obtained the Talisman of Thunderous Foyer from Askr, he seeks further assistance in the Bastion of Thunder.
Mavuin is grateful to you for taking his case before the Tribunal. The information provided to you, that Mithaniel Marr and Karana carry information you should seek, could be quite useful.
Saved from a world of eternal nightmares, Thelin is forever in your debt.
The portal into the Plane of Fire has been altered. Miak needs you to find the correct way to channel the portal.
You remember Nitram's words - 'three small turns to the right on the bottommost rivet should open the door'.
You can't reach that, get closer.
Gram Dunnar regards you indifferently -- he appears to be quite formidable.
Targeted (NPC): Gram Dunnar
Right click on the NPC to consider him.
You say, 'Hail, Gram Dunnar'
The old dwarf looks up at you slowly, his wrinkled hands continuing to carve a small wooden object. He grins as he eyes your dust-covered outfit and well-used equipment. 'Ahh, a young adventurer,' he says. 'Warms my heart to see the spirit I once had still going strong. Got too old, you see." He strokes his beard. 'Tried taking up a [craft], but it just isn't the same. Sure would be nice to hear some [stories] about those new places I'll never get to see.'
You say, 'I will tell you stories'
Gram listens quietly and nods occasionally as you tell him of your adventures. 'Good stories,' he says. 'Heard 'em before, but still bring back memories.'
You say, 'I will tell you stories'
Gram listens quietly and nods occasionally as you tell him of your adventures. 'Good stories,' he says. 'Heard 'em before, but still bring back memories.'
Trakanon Idol
Key to Charasis
Sleeper's Key
Ring of the Shissar
Talisman of Thunderous Foyer
You say, 'Intricate Wooden Figurine'

You have obtained the Talisman of Thunderous Foyer from Askr, he seeks further assistance in the Bastion of Thunder.

> You are flagged to enter the Bastion of Thunder, but have not yet completed Agnarr.

Mavuin is grateful to you for taking his case before the Tribunal. The information provided to you, that Mithaniel Marr and Karana carry information you should seek, could be quite useful.

> You have saved Mavuin in one of the six Trials in the Plane of Justice and are flagged for the Plane of Valor and the Plane of Storms.

Saved from a world of eternal nightmares, Thelin is forever in your debt.

> Terris Thule flag completed.

The portal into the Plane of Fire has been altered. Miak needs you to find the correct way to channel the portal.

> Preflag to killing Solusek Ro.

You remember Nitram's words - 'three small turns to the right on the bottommost rivet should open the door'.

> Xanamech Nezmirthafen killed and Nitram Anizok hailed. You have access to the Plane of Innovation factory (not required for progression).

I copied pasted from another page, but those are all I see on your guided meditation.


Face of God? Archaeologist claims to find 10th cent. BCE graven images of Yahweh

Amanda Borschel-Dan is The Times of Israel's Jewish World and Archaeology editor.

A leading Israeli archaeology professor claims that a handful of small male figurines associated with horse statues dating to the 10th and 9th centuries BCE, discovered in multiple sites from the ancient Kingdom of Judah, are in fact representations of the biblical Israelite God, Yahweh.

Hebrew University Prof. Yosef Garfinkel published his theory on Friday in an article for the popular archaeology-themed magazine, Biblical Archaeology Review, in its Fall 2020 issue.

“Yes, I think that people in ancient times believed these figurines to represent the face of Yahweh,” Garfinkel told The Times of Israel on Friday.

His theory was firmly rejected by all archaeologists who agreed to respond to Garfinkel’s premise. Some would not give it the time of day, while others said it is not coincidental that his article was printed in a mainstream magazine and not an academic journal.

“Unfortunately, this article is pure sensationalism that caters to popular, money-generating, demand, in presenting an unfounded and (at best) tentative identification as factual as he ignores existing professional research and studies, including avoiding reference to any of the publications by the excavators,” wrote Tel Motza excavation co-directors Shua Kisilevitz (Israel Antiquities Authority and Tel Aviv University) and Oded Lipschits (Tel Aviv University), whose finds served as a major basis for Garfinkel’s article.

What has led Garfinkel to believe that he holds a statue of Yahweh in his hands is a combination of an anthropomorphic biblical verse from the Book of Habakkuk, the fact that neighboring nations in the biblical era had national gods, and the relative scarceness of male figurines made of clay such as the one his team uncovered at his Khirbet Qeiyafa excavation, some 20 miles or 30 kilometers southwest of Jerusalem.

About a decade ago Garfinkel’s team discovered what he said was a rare male head at his Khirbet Qeiyafa excavation in a layer that he says is securely dated to the 10th century through over 30 radiocarbon dated organic samples.

In the BAR article, Garfinkel writes: “With a flat top, the head has protruding eyes, ears, and a nose. The eyes were made in two stages. They were first attached to the face as rounded blobs of clay and then punctured to create the iris. Because the ears are pierced, the figure may have worn earrings. Around the top of the head is a circle of holes,” which could have been used to hold a crown or other headdress.

While thousands of female fertility figures have been discovered from prehistoric times onwards, the discovery of this sole circa 5-cm (2-inch) clay male statue — there are indications of a beard — made him raise an eyebrow and dig deeper. It is the lone figurine recovered from the 10th-century layer.

Garfinkel acknowledged that the Bible is very clear on the prohibition against physical representations of god. Whereas neighboring peoples worshipped many gods, “the Kingdom of Judah was a different story and based on two concepts — that there is only one god and not many, and that you shouldn’t make a statute, a graven image of it.”

However, he said the distance between theology and what happened on the ground may be worlds apart. The Bible is rife with exhortations of leaders to the people of Israel to stop worshipping household gods and excavation sites are filled with remains of cultic deities.

Garfinkel said that the Canaanite tradition depicts the god “El,” a name also preserved in the Hebrew Bible, as an older god, a Zeus-like figure often sitting and holding a scepter. He believes that his clay figurine depicts a god unlike all others because the god riding a horse is “a totally different iconography, the horseman is something new,” he said.

During the Kingdoms of Judah and Israel, neighboring early Iron Age (11th–9th centuries BCE) kingdoms each had a different god: the Moabites (and possibly the Ammonites) had the god Chemosh the Edomites had Qos. “And here we had Yahweh,” said Garfinkel. “Every territory developed their own god.”

Shortly after Garfinkel’s male figurine was discovered, the excavations at the unexpected temple complex at Tel Motza, 9 kilometers or 5.5 miles northwest of ancient Jerusalem, uncovered two similar heads, which were found near to horse figurines. (The temple complex, which would have been active during the First Temple period, is not documented in the Bible, nor is a similar compound discovered in Arad in the 1960s.)

Seeing the heads in the same context as the horses, Garfinkel was then reminded of another male horseman from former defense minister Moshe Dayan’s collection, now found in the Israel Museum. The Hebrew Univerity professor began to wonder: Are these figures related? Is this a god? And if so, which?

Saying that since these presumed horsemen god figures were found in the Motza temple complex — and not at a home — ruled out that they were simple household deities. Therefore, the statues must have represented “the religion of the time” and its god, Yahweh.

As for why the depiction of Yahweh would be so rudimentary, Garfinkel said that whereas Egypt and the Mesopotamia were rich kingdoms with court artists, the Kingdom of Judah was poor, small (between 5,000-20,000 people at its peak), and barely eked out an existence on the 30 kilometers or so of arable land it had between Beit Shemesh and Lachish.

“We’re talking about peasant society,” he said, that was never a big political power in the Middle East. Aside from the Bible, which preserved regional history, very little remains from the monarchic periods in the Land of Israel.

“The Kingdom of Judah left a great intellectual contribution,” he said, and influenced morals until today, but left barely a mark in material culture. “There’s nothing you can put in a museum, really.”

As his theory is published in international media. Garfinkel is aware that many of his colleagues will dismiss it. “Like every discovery, some will accept and some will reject,” he said.

A chorus of dissent

Of the archaeologists The Times of Israel approached, not one would accept the idea that these small male figurines represented the god Yahweh. Many decided to not comment.

Much of Garfinkel’s theory is based on two male heads that were found in the same temple complex at Tel Motza.

In a preliminary response ahead of the more detailed answer to Garfinkel’s article that will soon be published on the Biblical Archaeology Review website, Tel Motza excavation co-directors Kisilevitz and Lipschits rejected the theory in the most absolute of terms and said that “Garfinkel’s article is riddled with factual inaccuracies and a flawed methodological approach.” They likewise castigated Garfinkel for including two unprovenanced items that were purchased on the antiquities market — a Philistine-type strainer jar and a rider and horse-shaped vessel.

“His claim that these vessels, along with the figurines from Motza and Qeiyafa, ‘create a new type of male figurine, with three of them seeming to represent a rider on a horse,’ overlooks their very obvious typological, stylistic and technological divergences,” wrote the archaeologists.

But more strikingly, the god Yahweh, they said, simply did not appear in the region before the 9th century BCE. Garfinkel’s Khirbet Qeiyafa figurine precedes that date. Likewise, they state that Garfinkel’s closing argument, “denying the existence of horse and rider figurines after the 8th century BCE, is patently incorrect.”

“Although we cannot rule out the possibility that the human heads from Motza and Qeiyafa depicted gods, they have no markings, symbols or attributes (such as horns, crescents, bulls), found on figures and visual representations throughout the ancient Near East, that would identify them as divine figures. Furthermore, when gods were depicted on animals, they did not sit on them (they do not need the transport) – they stood on them!” they wrote.

“His association of the figurine heads with Yahweh is based on the very late depiction of Yahweh as a rider on a horse in Habakkuk 3:8, and his erroneous statement that the heads from Motza are ‘outstanding in their large size in relation to almost all known anthropomorphic figurines’ is meant to differentiate them from other figurines in order to substantiate his claim that they are divine,” they wrote.

The archaeologists said that while they agree that one of the two heads found at their site may have once been attached to the larger horse figurine, “Garfinkel’s attempt to relate one of the heads to the small horse disregards the different production technique and scale of these items.”

Furthermore, they claim that Garfinkel “ignores all the early Iron Age horse and human figurines and figures found throughout the region, some of which provide significantly better parallels for the Motza and Qeiyafa figurines.”

Do you rely on The Times of Israel for accurate and insightful news on Israel and the Jewish world? If so, please join The Times of Israel Community. For as little as $6/month, you will:


Baphomet

Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article.

Baphomet, invented pagan or gnostic idol or deity that the Templars were accused of worshipping and that was later embraced by various occult and mystical writers.

The first known mention of Baphomet was in a letter written in 1098 by Anselm of Ribemont describing the Siege of Antioch during the First Crusade. Anselm stated that the Turks “called loudly upon Baphomet.” Most scholars believe that the word refers to Muhammad, the founder of Islam. In 1307 Philip IV of France had every Templar in France arrested, accusing them of such heretical acts as idolatrous worship of a bearded male head called Baphomet. By the 19th century Freemasons had also been (falsely) said to worship Baphomet.

In his book Dogme et ritual de la haute magie (1861 Transcendental Magic: Its Doctrine and Ritual), the influential French occultist Éliphas Lévi created the Baphomet that has become a recognized occult icon. The book’s frontispiece was a drawing of Baphomet imagined as a “Sabbatic Goat”—a hermaphroditic winged human figure with the head and feet of a goat that is adorned with numerous esoteric symbols. Lévi describes the meaning of each element of the drawing, which is defined by its profound and pervasive duality. British occultist Aleister Crowley also adopted Baphomet, notably in his “Gnostic Mass.” More recently, the Satanic Temple commissioned a statue of Baphomet, which was unveiled in 2015 and then moved to various places as a protest against displays of Ten Commandments monuments in public spaces.


3rd Millennium BC


Area of Naram-Sin Palace, seen from Area HH, with Jebel Sinjar and its western pass in the distance.

Brak remained urban in size and complexity during the 3rd millennium BC but retracted back to the limits of the main central mound. Houses belonging to the 3rd millennium city have been excavated on both northern (Area HS) and southern (Area CH) portions of the tell. And in 1999-2004, part of a large public building was investigated in Area TC.

Of particular importance for the late 3rd millennium Akkadian Period was Mallowan’s excavation of the ‘Palace’ (actually a fortified storehouse) of Naram-Sin, a grandson of Sargon of Agade. This building provided the first known evidence for South Mesopotamian control in the area. During the 1980s-90s, further important early Akkadian Period buildings were investigated, including a unique audience hall and temple together with administrative and ‘industrial’ areas near the Naram-Sin Palace (Area SS), and a temple and possible ‘way station’ near the north gate of the city (Area FS). Cuneiform tablets and sealed bullae from these buildings tell us something of the Akkadian and later administration.

Of significance is the evidence for more or less continuous occupation throughout the 3rd millennium BC, including an apparently Hurrian rebuilding of the Naram-Sin building, squatter occupation in Area SS, and further use of the site’s northern ridge. Evidence from Tell Leilan suggests abrupt climate change and an abandonment of that site and adjustments to the settlement pattern across the region, but the inhabitants of Brak proved more resilient or adaptable.


Sealing of late 3rd millennium Hurrian ruler, “Talpuš-atali, sun of the country of Nagar”.
Kite photograph of Area TC. Photo by Evan Malone (with permission of Geoff Emberling).

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Cleaning off the mud coating the clay sculpture, which is about the size of two adult fingers, Ori Greenhut found the well-preserved carved form of a naked woman, featuring a narrow waist and apparently an ornate hairdo. He took it home, and the Greenhut family, which lives in the nearby communal settlement of Tel Te'omim, turned it over to the Israel Antiquities Authority.

"We explained to him that it was an ancient object and that the Antiquities Authority would take care of it for everybody's benefit," says his mother, Moriya Greenhut.

Archaeologists are mixed as to whether the figurine is an idol of a fertility goddess, such as Astarte, or depicts a living woman of the time. "It could be either one," Yardenna Alexandre of the Israel Antiquities Authority told Haaretz.

The image has none of the hallmarks sometimes found with depictions of goddesses. "She has no crown, for instance. She looks completely natural, which is why she could be either one, a goddess or a picture of a real woman," says Alexandre.

A great many figurines depicting females, some carved in stone and some in etched on bronze, have been found in the region, Alexandre explains: some are very clearly goddess idols but some could well be portraits of women that lived at the time. This one had been made of clay that was pressed into a mold, says the Israel Antiquities Authority.

Ori Greenhut, 7, holding the Canaanite figurine he found at Tel Rehov while on a trip with friends. Moriya Greenhut

"Evidently the figurine belonged to one of the residents of the city of Rehov, which was then ruled by the central government of the Egyptian pharaohs," commented Amihai Mazar, professor emeritus at Hebrew University and expedition director of the archaeological excavations at Tel Rehov.

Figurines depicting beefier women were typical of even earlier eras, explains Alexandre. "For this period, the late Bronze period of 13 to 15 centuries BCE, her slimness is typical in figurines," she says.

Given that the piece was found (almost) lying on open ground, rather than associated with a clear archaeological layer, how can its provenance be sure, and how was it dated? The piece is completely typical of its time and is highly, highly persuasive, Alexandre says, adding, "We are not worried that it's a fake."

Representatives of the IAA visited Ori Greenhut's school, in Kibbutz Sde Eliahu, to deliver a certificate of appreciation for his good citizenship in turning over the piece rather than keeping it. Ironically enough, "The archaeologists visited during the Torah lesson, just when we were learning about Rachel stealing the idols of her father Laban," says teacher Esther Ledell. "And suddenly I realized that here we had an idol just like that right in our classroom!"


3,000-yr-old Glass Head of a “King” Found Sends Scholars on Biblical Mystery Hunt

A surprisingly intact glass figure of a human head was found in northern Israel. The site discovered was known as Abel Beth Maacah, near the modern day city of Metula.

Archaeologists began digging at the site since 2012 and have described it as one of the last large archaeological sites to be uncovered. Abel Beth Maacah was likely a strategically important location during the Iron and Bronze ages. It’s also mentioned briefly in the Bible.

Persian-Early Hellenistic stone building above Iron Age II remains

The town was located between three regional, rival powers at the time: the Aramean Kingdom based in Damascus to the east, the Phoenicians based out of Tyre to the west, and the kingdom of Israel to the south.

It appears that Abel Beth Maacah was fought over and is unclear which kingdom it was loyal too. It may have been ruled by different kingdoms as armies swept past.

3,000-year-old sculpture of mystery biblical king. Photo by: Gabi Laron

In one biblical story, a traitor to King David seeks refuge in the town. King David’s army besieges it and demands the traitor be given up. In response, the people of Abel Beth Maacah cut off the traitor’s head and toss it over the walls. Getting what they wanted, the Israelites end the siege.

Map of Tel Abel Beth Maacah Photo by Tel Abel Beth Maacah CC BY SA 4.0

The head found by archaeologists and tested through carbon dating is believed to be from about 100 years after the Biblical incident with King David, dated to between 900 and 800 B.C.

The material used was a glass-like material known as faience. It was commonly used for jewelry and figurines in ancient Egypt and the Middle East.

Tel Abel Beth Maacah, picture taken from the road in 1945. Photo by Israel Antiquities Authorities CC By SA 4.0

The sculpture itself is only two inches in size. It’s well preserved and mostly intact. The figure has a beard and is wearing a crown. It’s considered a rare example of figurative art during that time period. Figurative art is defined as representational art derived from real objects or people. The hairstyle of the figure with a beard gives some clues to his ethnic identity.

The Arab village of Abil el-Qameḥ on 1945 aerial photo, with current excavation areas marked on it.

The hair is pulled back in thick locks that cover the ears and is held in place by a striped headband. The art form is similar to how ancient Egyptian artists portrayed Semitic peoples of the Near East.

It’s still not known who the head depicted is and from what nationality they were from, though it’s likely a royal figure. The man portrayed was certainly an important person in his community.

But they have no clue what king it may have been or from which kingdom. The time period of the sculpture is from the period of biblical kings. After the death of David’s son, King Solomon, the Kingdom of Israel split into two entities with separate kingships, Israel in the north and Judah in the south.

The rampart layers, capped by small-medium stones, looking north Iron I pits and stone silos cut into the layers. Photo by Tel Abel Beth Maacah CC BY SA 4.0

Scholars have guessed at some contemporary names the sculpture could represent. They include biblical figures such as King Ben Hadad or Hazael of Damascus, Ethbaal of Tyre, and King Ahab or Jehu of Israel, whose capital was Samaria.

Knowing what king it might be would answer some questions. However, there are no known references or sources to check outside of the Bible narrative.

View of Tel Abel Beth Maacah (center of photo), looking east, with the Hermon massif in the background. Photo by Tel Abel Beth Maacah CC BY SA 4.0

There is another connection that may tie in the surrounding kingdoms at the time. Jezebel was a powerful queen, alive sometime during the period the sculpture was created.

In the Bible, Jezebel is depicted as an idol-worshipping woman of the god Baal, threatening the worship of Israel’s God. She was the daughter of Ethbaal of Tyre and the wife of Ahab of Israel. As Abel Beth Maacah sat on the border of three kingdoms, the town was an important outpost and Jezebel may have been one of the links to who governed it.

Archaeologists plan to continue digging at the site. They hope to find new clues as to who the mysterious glass figure may have been, as well as who was ruling Abel Beth Maacah at that time.


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