See Frank Moore Cross, “Nahman Avigad: In Memoriam,” BAR 18:03, and “Nahman Avigad, 1905–1992,” BAR 18:03.


See, for example, Philip J. King, “The Great Eighth Century,” BR 05:04; Joanne Hackett, Frank Moore Cross, P. Kyle McCarter, Ada Yardeni, André Lemaire, Esther Eshel and Avi Hurvitz, “The Siloam Inscription Ain’t Hasmonean,” BAR 23:02.


See Frank Moore Cross, “King Hezekiah’s Seal Bears Phoenician Imagery,” BAR 25:02.


See Meir Lubetski, “King Hezekiah’s Seal Revisited,” BAR 27:04.


Deryck Sheriffs, “Decoding Judahite Symbolism,” Paul S. Forbs, “Wrong on Several Counts” and Gabe Moskovitz, “Hezekiah’s Agenda,” Queries & Comments, BAR 27:06.


That hoard was found at the City of David excavations that were led by the late Yigal Shiloh. See Tsvi Schneider, “Six Biblical Signatures,” BAR 17:04.



It is from the collection of Yoav Sasson, Jerusalem.


It is from the collection of Shlomo Moussaieff of London and Herzliya, Israel.


Robert Deutsch, Messages from the Past (in Hebrew) (Tel Aviv: Archaeological Center Publications, 1997), p. 35. See also the English translation (Tel Aviv: Archaeological Center Publications, 1999), p. 42.


It is from the collection of J. Chaim Kaufman of Antwerp and Tel Aviv.


It is from the collection of Gil Chaya of Geneva and Jerusalem.


It is from the collection of J. Chaim Kaufman.


It is from the collection of J. Chaim Kaufman.


It is from the collection of Gil Chaya.


For those who want exact figures, it is 13.2 mm (0.52 inch) in width, 11.9 mm (0.47 inch) in height and 1.8–3.8 mm (0.07–0.15 inch) thick. The seal impression itself is very small, 11.4 mm x 9.8 mm (0.45 x 0.03 inch). On the back is the imprint of the papyrus document, and holes and grooves mark where the cord that tied the document ran.


David Ussishkin, “The Destruction of Lachish by Sennacherib and the Dating of the Royal Judean Storage Jars,” Tel Aviv 4 (1977), pp. 28–60.


Yigael Yadin, “A Note on the Nimrud Bronze Bowls,” Eretz Israel 8 (1967), p. 6.


Deutsch, Messages from the Past, pp. 61–63.


Lubetski argued that because “Judah” was at the top of the seal, the inscription should read, “Judah/Belonging to Hezekiah, son of Ahaz, King” instead of “Belonging to Hezekiah, son of Ahaz, King of Judah.” On the basis of this distorted reading, Lubetski claimed that Judah belonged to Hezekiah, affirming his position as ruler. Lubetski admits that we are not accustomed to the “novel ending ‘king’ on seal impressions” from Israel. Indeed! As the bullae discussed in this article demonstrate, the phrase is always “King of Judah.” Of course not all of these were available to Lubetski when he wrote his article. But the bulla of Ahaz certainly was (see Robert Deutsch, “First Impression: What We Learn from King Ahaz’s Seal,” BAR 24:03). The formula of Ahaz’s inscription is exactly the same as we now see on these Hezekiah bullae. In Ahaz’s bulla, the inscription is in three lines and reads from top right to bottom left: “Ahaz, [son of] Yehotam, King of Judah.” Lubetski’s silence regarding the formula on the Ahaz’s bulla is enigmatic (or perhaps he deliberately ignores it, as it doesn’t fit his theory). This silence is also observed by Lubetski’s critic, Edward Greenstein, in “Follow the Formula,” Queries & Comments, BAR 28:02. The same reading—that Hezekiah was “King of Judah”—is clear from the newly revealed Hezekiah bullae presented here.


Trude Dothan, The Philistines and Their Material Culture (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1982), pp. 252–288, especially 256, 277, 278.


Richard David Barnett, Ancient Ivories in the Middle East, (Jerusalem: Institute of Archaeology, Hebrew University, 1982), p. 49, plates 48–49.


Nahman Avigad, revised and completed by Benjamin Sass, Corpus of West Semitic Stamp Seals (Jerusalem: Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities: Israel Exploration Society, Institute of Archaeology, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 1997), no. 3; Robert Deutsch and André Lemaire, Biblical Period Personal Seals in the Shlomo Moussaieff Collection, (Tel Aviv: Archaeological Center Publications, 2000), nos. 13 and 14.


Avigad and Sass, West Semitic Stamp Seals, nos. 728, 733, 735, 743, 749.


Georgio Pisano, “Jewellery,” in Sabatino Moscati, ed. The Phoenicians 1988, pp. 376–377, 626, 654, nos. 250 and 416. For a detailed discussion on the winged sun disk motif, see Dominique Parayre, “A propos des sceaux ouestsémitiques: le role de l’iconographie dans l’attributation d’un sceau à une aire culturelle ou à un atelier,” in Benjamin Sass and Christoph Uehlinger, eds. Studies in the Iconography of Northwest Semitic Inscribed Seals (Fribourg, Switzerland: University Press; Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1992), pp. 27–51.


Frank Moore Cross’s assumption that the “scarab and the sun-disk imparts a religious significance” in Judah, as also Meir Lubetski’s assumption that the “Judean king gazed aloft to the God in heaven for deliverance,” are mere speculations.


Andrew G. Vaughn, Theology, History, and Archaeology in the Chronicler’s Account of Hezekiah (Atlanta, Georgia: Scholars Press, 1999), pp. 199–216, XXIIe and XXIIIa.


Deutsch, Messages from the Past, pp. 22–23.


Deutsch, Messages from the Past (in Hebrew) (Tel Aviv: Archaeological Center Publications, 1997).


Nahman Avigad, Hebrew Bullae from the Time of Jeremiah: Remnants of a Burnt Archive, (Jerusalem: Israel Exploration Society, 1986).


Now in the collection of J. Chaim Kaufman and to be published by me in a forthcoming volume on the J. Chaim Kaufman collection.


William G. Dever, “Iron Age Epigraphic Material from the Area of Khirbet el-Qom,” Hebrew Union College Annual 40/41 (1969–1970), pp. 169–170.


Joseph Naveh, “Hebrew Graffiti from the First Temple Period,” Israel Exploration Journal 51 (2002), pp. 194–207.