COURTESY OF THE NELSON GLUECK SCHOOL OF BIBLICAL ARCHAEOLOGY
MIGHTY BULL OF ISRAEL. The bull-mounted deity engraved in this ninth-century bronze plaque from Tel Dan in northern Israel represents a winged storm god, possibly Yahweh, whom early Israelites called and even depicted as a mighty bull (Exodus 32; Hosea 8:5–6). In front of him, a human figure stands in adoration. The deity is enthroned on a bull, his left arm stretching out as if in blessing and the right arm holding a round object. The imagery evokes the biblical story of Jeroboam’s construction of a royal shrine at Dan, where Yahweh was worshiped as a golden calf or bull (1 Kings 12:25–33). The original intact plaque measured about 4 by 3 inches.