Authors

Daniel Bodi (Biblical Profile: Abishag: Bedwarmer or Bureaucrat?) is Professor of History of Religions of Antiquity at the Sorbonne University in Paris. He has written several books on King David’s wives, including Abishag as Administrator of King David’s Household (Sheffield Phoenix Press, 2021).

Eric H. Cline (Rising from the Ashes: Israel and the Dawn of the Iron Age) is Professor of Classical and Ancient Near Eastern Studies at George Washington University and the author of several books, including After 1177 B.C.: The Survival of Civilizations (Princeton Univ. Press, 2024).

Robert Edwards (Antioch’s Silent Guardians) is Lecturer in Christian Thought and History and Director of Postgraduate Studies at Brisbane School of Theology in Australia, and Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Queensland.

Matthew J. Grey (Book Review: Excavating the Land of Jesus) is Associate Professor in the Department of Ancient Scripture and an affiliate faculty member of the Ancient Near Eastern Studies program at Brigham Young University.

Emma Maayan-Fanar (Finding Jesus: Byzantine Paintings at Shivta) is a senior lecturer in the Department of Art History at the University of Haifa, Israel.

Steven Ortiz (Solomon’s Powerplay: Gezer’s Royal Complex Confirmed) is Director of the Lanier Center for Archaeology at Lipscomb University. He co-directed the Tel Gezer Excavation Project.

Konstantinos Politis (Site-Seeing: The Land of Lot) is an archaeologist of the eastern Mediterranean lands ranging from prehistory to Ottoman times. He focuses on late antiquity to the early medieval period, particularly in Jordan and Syria.

Maggie L. Popkin (Classical Corner: Precious Memories: Souvenirs of the Roman Empire) is Associate Professor of Art History at Case Western Reserve University. She specializes in ancient Roman art and architecture.

Yotam Tepper (Finding Jesus: Byzantine Paintings at Shivta) is an academic supervisor and research archaeologist with the Israel Antiquities Authority and a research fellow at the Zinman Institute of Archaeology at the University of Haifa, Israel.

Craig W. Tyson (Into the Heart of Moab: Excavations at Khirbet Balu‘a) is Associate Professor of Religious Studies at D’Youville University. He specializes in the Hebrew Bible and the history and archaeology of the southern Levant during the Bronze and Iron Ages.

Ben Witherington III (Finding Paul’s Weakness) is Amos Professor of New Testament for Doctoral Studies at Asbury Theological Seminary and a professor emeritus at St. Andrews University in Scotland.

Samuel Wolff (Solomon’s Powerplay: Gezer’s Royal Complex Confirmed) is a retired archaeologist and ceramicist with the Israel Antiquities Authority. He co-directed the Tel Gezer Excavation Project.

Caption Contest

ERIC CARLSON

“I will fear no evil, but I’m still afraid of heights!”
—Stephen M. Schneider, Cape Canaveral, Florida

Thank you to all those who submitted caption entries for our Winter 2023 cartoon, based on Acts 9:25: “But [Paul’s] disciples took him by night and let him down through an opening in the wall, lowering him in a basket.” We are pleased to congratulate Stephen M. Schneider of Cape Canaveral, Florida, who wrote the winning caption, and our runners-up:

RUNNERS-UP

“I guess a basket is better than a casket!”
—Stephanie Kerry, Valley, Alabama

“After all I’ve been through, no wonder I’m a basket case.”
—Danny E. Draper, Little Rock, Arkansas

HONORABLE MENTIONS

“The first game of Basket Paul.”
—Andy Stafford, Bloomington, Indiana

“A tisket, a tasket, I’m not sure I trust this basket.”
—Daryl Pearson, Sioux Falls, South Dakota

ERIC CARLSON

For additional caption entries, as well as past cartoons and captions, please visit biblicalarchaeology.org/captioncontest.

Write a caption for the cartoon based on 1 Samuel 16:13: “Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed [David] in the presence of his brothers; and the spirit of the Lord came mightily upon David from that day forward.” Submit it via our website at biblicalarchaeology.org/captioncontest.

Please include your name and address. The deadline for entries is August 15, 2024. The author of the winning caption will receive a BAS All-Access membership and three gift subscriptions to give BAR to friends. Runners-up will receive an All-Access membership and two gift subscriptions for friends.

Authors

Reli Avisar (Fragments of Luxury: The Jerusalem Ivories) is a doctoral student in the Department of Archaeology and Ancient Near East Cultures at Tel Aviv University in Israel.

Danielle Candelora (Hands Off! The Severed Hands of the Hyksos Capital) is Assistant Professor of Ancient Mediterranean History at the State University of New York at Cortland.

Erin Darby (Book Review: An Anatomy of God) is Associate Professor of Early Judaism at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. She is an expert in the archaeology of Israelite religion.

Yuval Gadot (Lifestyles of Jerusalem’s Rich and Famous) is Professor of Archaeology at Tel Aviv University in Israel. He co-directs the Givati Parking Lot excavation.

Sabine Kleiman (House of the Rising Sun: Azekah’s Canaanite Temple) is a research fellow at Tel Aviv University in Israel. She is a senior member of the Lautenschläger Azekah Expedition.

Elizabeth Knott (Arch-Tech: Digitizing Ancient Seals) is a visiting fellow at Yale University. She is working to create a website that explores strategies for cylinder seal documentation.

Oded Lipschits (House of the Rising Sun: Azekah’s Canaanite Temple) is Professor of Jewish History at Tel Aviv University. He co-directs the Lautenschläger Azekah Expedition.

Manfred Oeming (House of the Rising Sun: Azekah’s Canaanite Temple) is Professor of Old Testament Theology at the University of Heidelberg in Germany. He co-directs the Lautenschläger Azekah Expedition.

Hannah M. Ripps (House of the Rising Sun: Azekah’s Canaanite Temple) is a master’s student at Tel Aviv University in Israel. She specializes in archaeology and Jewish art and visual culture.

Yiftah Shalev (Lifestyles of Jerusalem’s Rich and Famous) is an archaeologist with the Israel Antiquities Authority. He is a co-director of the Givati Parking Lot excavation.

Philip D. Stern (Solomon’s Egyptian Bride: Artful Alliance or Biblical Boast?) is the author of The Biblical Herem: A Window on Israel’s Religious Experience (Atlanta, GA: Scholars Press, 1991).

Joan E. Taylor (The Cave of Salome—Tomb of Jesus’s Disciple?) is Professor of Christian Origins and Second Temple Judaism at King’s College London. Her research focuses on early Judaism and Christianity.

Mark Wilson (“Under the Lee” with Paul) is the director of the Asia Minor Research Center in Antalya, Turkey, and Professor Extraordinary of New Testament at Stellenbosch University in South Africa.

Boaz Zissu (The Cave of Salome—Tomb of Jesus’s Disciple?) is Professor of Archaeology at Bar-Ilan University in Israel. He has conducted archaeological excavations at Horvat Qasra.

Caption Contest

ERIC CARLSON

“I’m burning for some spirited conversation!”
—Claudia McAdam, Highlands Ranch, Colorado

Thank you to all those who submitted caption entries for our Fall 2023 cartoon, based on Acts 2:3–4: “Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.” We are pleased to congratulate Claudia McAdam of Highlands Ranch, Colorado, who wrote the winning caption, and our runners-up:

RUNNERS-UP:

“I’m telling you, if you use Babbel, the flame gets bigger.”
—Richard Wolf, Westminster, Maryland

“Bright Ideas, B.T.E. (Before Thomas Edison).”
—Lindy Pierce, Campbellsville, Kentucky

HONORABLE MENTIONS:

“I knew I should have upgraded my service to three-tongue coverage!”
—Kevin Johnson, Carson City, Nevada

“This confirms it, more hair means more flair!”
—Michael Meloney, Columbia, Virginia

ERIC CARLSON

For additional caption entries, as well as past cartoons and captions, please visit biblicalarchaeology.org/captioncontest.

Write a caption for the cartoon based on Exodus 16:15–16: “When the Israelites saw it, they said to one another, ‘What is it?’ For they did not know what it was. Moses said to them, ‘It is the bread that the Lord has given you to eat. This is what the Lord has commanded: Gather as much of it as each of you needs, an omer to a person according to the number of persons, all providing for those in their own tents.’” Submit it via our website at biblicalarchaeology.org/captioncontest.

Please include your name and address. The deadline for entries is May 15, 2024. The author of the winning caption will receive a BAS All-Access membership and three gift subscriptions to give BAR to friends. Runners-up will receive an All-Access membership and two gift subscriptions for friends.

Authors

Ra‘anan Boustan (Warrior Women: Deborah and Yael Found at Huqoq) is a research scholar in Judaic Studies at Princeton University and the site historian at the Huqoq Excavation Project.

Karen Britt (Warrior Women: Deborah and Yael Found at Huqoq) is Assistant Professor of Art History at Northwest Missouri State University and serves as the mosaic specialist at the Huqoq Excavation Project.

Lacy K. Crocker Papadakis (Understanding the Woman in the Window) is an Affiliate Clinical Professor at Baylor University and a lecturer at the University of Miami. Her research focuses on the relationship between ancient Near Eastern literature and archaeology.

Christopher A. Frilingos (Book Review: The Magi in History and Tradition) is Professor of Religious Studies at Michigan State University. He writes and teaches about biblical literature and early Christianity.

Igor Kreimerman (Milestones: Amnon Ben-Tor) is Senior Lecturer in the Institute of Archaeology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and Director of the Selz Foundation Hazor Excavations in Memory of Yigael Yadin.

Marta Luciani (Archaeology in the Land of Midian: Excavating the Qurayyah Oasis) is Associate Professor of Near Eastern Archaeology and Cultural History at the University of Vienna, Austria. She directs the archaeological project at Qurayyah in Saudi Arabia.

R. Steven Notley (The House of Peter: Capernaum or Bethsaida?) is a scholar of New Testament and Christian Origins. He serves as the Academic Director of the El-Araj Excavation Project.

Jonathan Robie (Artificial Intelligence and Bible Translation) is Senior Research and Development Fellow at Biblica, Inc. He works at the intersection of computer science, biblical studies, and Bible translation.

Katharina Schmidt (Hard Power: The Stone Statues of Ammon) is Professor at the University of Münster and Scientific Consultant at the German Archaeological Institute. Her research focuses on the Bronze and Iron Ages in the eastern Mediterranean and Mesopotamia.

Jennifer Tobin (Classical Corner: The Seven World Wonders) is Associate Professor Emerita of Classics at the University of Illinois Chicago. She specializes in Roman art and archaeology and ancient Anatolia.

Andrew Tobolowsky (Were There 12 Tribes of Israel?) is Associate Professor of Religious Studies at the College of William & Mary. His research focuses on the Hebrew Bible and the history of ancient Israel.

BAS Publication Awards

2023 WINNERS BAS Publication Awards
These prestigious awards have been made possible by a grant from:
The Rohr Family in memory of Sami Rohr


BEST BOOK ON THE HEBREW BIBLE

Purity and Pollution in the Hebrew Bible

Purity and Pollution in the Hebrew Bible

From Embodied Experience to Moral Metaphor
Yitzhaq Feder
(Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press, 2021)

Where did the Hebrew Bible’s concepts of purity and pollution originate, and how did ancient Israel think about these ideas? In this insightful book, anthropologist and biblical scholar Yitzhaq Feder builds upon previous scholarship and offers a nuanced way forward by synthesizing what are typically opposing views on purity and pollution. His explanations of the linguistic and historical issues involved are clear and accessible, and his engagement with both biblical and extrabiblical sources is thorough and careful. All the while, Feder never loses sight of the significance his research holds for better understanding the Hebrew Bible.

— JUDGES —
ELIZABETH BACKFISH – William Jessup University
STEED DAVIDSON – Society of Biblical Literature
AMY-JILL LEVINE – Hartford International University for Religion and Peace


BEST BOOK ON THE NEW TESTAMENT

The Pharisees

The Pharisees

Edited by Joseph Sievers and Amy-Jill Levine
(Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2021)

The Pharisees is a landmark volume that tackles a longstanding problem in the field of New Testament studies by bringing together a broad variety of scholars with a stunningly wide breadth of expertise—including literary and archaeological perspectives, Jewish and Christian contexts, and ancient and modern purviews. The negative portrayal of Pharisees in the New Testament and its effects on the history of anti-Semitism have been long noted, including in relation to a difficult legacy of anti-Judaism that has been shaped by the academic study of the New Testament. This volume addresses the problem head-on, updating our historical understanding of this group in the light of new data and approaches.

— JUDGES —
ANNETTE YOSHIKO REED – Harvard Divinity School
JORDAN RYAN – Wheaton College
ROBYN FAITH WALSH – University of Miami


BEST BOOK ON ARCHAEOLOGY (TIE)

Why Those Who Shovel Are Silent

Why Those Who Shovel Are Silent

A History of Local Archaeological Knowledge and Labor
Allison Mickel
(Louisville: University Press of Colorado, 2021)

Allison Mickel’s book sheds light on an aspect of archaeology that rarely receives attention: the role of the local community in the research process. By combining ethnographic research with a study of the practice of fieldwork, Mickel draws attention to the unique knowledge that local laborers possess and allows their voices to be heard.

Age of Empires

Age of Empires

The History and Administration of Judah in the 8th–2nd Centuries BCE
Oded Lipschits
(University Park, PA: Eisenbrauns, 2021)

Age of Empires covers the phenomenon of stamped storage jar handles in the Kingdom of Judah and its role in the administration of the kingdom for 600 years. It examines the archaeological remains and explores the function of these jars in the political and economic life of Judah.


HERSHEL SHANKS AWARD FOR BEST DIG REPORT (TIE)

Tel Reḥov

Tel Reḥov

A Bronze and Iron Age City in the Beth-Shean Valley, Vols. 1–5
Amihai Mazar and Nava Panitz-Cohen
(Jerusalem: Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 2020)

Megiddo VI

Megiddo VI

The 2010–2014 Seasons
Edited by Israel Finkelstein and Mario A.S. Martin
(University Park, PA: Eisenbrauns, 2022)

The five-volume Tel Reḥov report, covering all 11 seasons of the project (1997– 2012), and the three-volume Megiddo VI report, covering the seasons from 2010–2014, are extremely comprehensive. Each includes chapters on stratigraphy, architecture, pottery, other artifacts, and scientific analyses. The new information, analyses, and interpretations expand our understanding not only of the sites themselves but the very fabric of the ebb and flow of history in this region, especially during the Bronze and Iron Ages.

— JUDGES OF THE ARCHAEOLOGY BOOKS —
ODED BOROWSKI – Emory University
ERIC H. CLINE – George Washington University
DEBRA FORAN – Wilfrid Laurier University

Caption Contest

ERIC CARLSON

“This little piggy should have stayed home.”
—Julia Stramer, Hazelton, North Dakota

Thank you to all those who submitted caption entries for our Summer 2023 cartoon, based on Luke 15:15–16: “So he went and hired himself out to one of the citizens of that region, who sent him to his fields to feed the pigs. He would gladly have filled his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, and no one gave him anything.” We are pleased to congratulate Julia Stramer of Hazelton, North Dakota, who wrote the winning caption, and our runners-up:

RUNNERS-UP:

“Should I eat slop, or go back to Pop?”
—Dirk Mroczek, Southport, North Carolina

“This is what I get for going hog wild!”
—Nolan Green, Jacksonville, Texas

HONORABLE MENTIONS:

“I’m sure there’s a pearl in here somewhere…”
—John McDonnell, Wausau, Wisconsin

“I dine with swine, while at home they’re drinking wine.”
—Lee Ellison, Moseley, Virginia

ERIC CARLSON

For additional caption entries, as well as past cartoons and captions, please visit biblicalarchaeology.org/captioncontest.

Write a caption for the cartoon (right) based on Acts 9:25: “But [Paul’s] disciples took him by night and let him down through an opening in the wall, lowering him in a basket.” Submit it via our website at biblicalarchaeology.org/captioncontest.

Please include your name and address. The deadline for entries is February 15, 2024. The author of the winning caption will receive a BAS All-Access membership and three gift subscriptions to give BAR to friends. Runners-up will receive an All-Access membership and two gift subscriptions for friends.

Authors

Rodney Caruthers II (Inspiration in Biblical Times) is Assistant Professor of New Testament at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. He studies ancient Jewish texts written in Greek.

Sidnie White Crawford (Milestone: Weston Fields (1948–2023)) is Professor Emerita at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a Visiting Scholar at Princeton Theological Seminary.

Aaron Demsky (Daedalus in Jerusalem) is Professor Emeritus of Jewish History in Antiquity at Bar-Ilan University in Israel.

Chris McKinny (The Millo: Jerusalem’s Lost Monument) is a research fellow at Gesher Media, a faculty member at Jerusalem University College, and a senior staff member at the Tel Burna Archaeological Project.

Dennis Mizzi (Were Temple Offerings Buried at Qumran?) is a senior lecturer in Hebrew and ancient Judaism at the University of Malta. He specializes in Qumran studies, the Dead Sea Scrolls, and early Judaism.

Gary A. Rendsburg (Moses as Pharaoh’s Equal—Horns and All) is the Blanche and Irving Laurie Chair in Jewish History at Rutgers University. He has published on the Hebrew language, biblical literature, and the relationship between ancient Israel and Egypt.

Michael J. Stahl (Yahweh or Baal—Who Was the God of Northern Israel?) is Assistant Teaching Professor of Hebrew Bible in the Department of Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies at Pennsylvania State University. He researches the origins of Yahweh and biblical monotheism.

James R. Strange (Milestone: Dennis E. Groh (1939–2023)) is the Charles Jackson Granade and Elizabeth Donald Granade Professor in New Testament at Samford University and Director of the Shikhin Excavation Project.

Nahshon Szanton (The Millo: Jerusalem’s Lost Monument) is a Ph.D. student at Tel Aviv University and was also a senior archaeologist with the Jerusalem district of the Israel Antiquities Authority.

Aharon Tavger (The Millo: Jerusalem’s Lost Monument) is a post-doctoral fellow at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and a senior staff member at the Tel Burna Archaeological Project.

Hanna Tervanotko (Biblical Profile: Miriam Through the Ages) is Associate Professor of Religious Studies at McMasters University. She studies women in antiquity, Qumran, and Jewish interpretation of scripture.

Joe Uziel (The Millo: Jerusalem’s Lost Monument) is the head of the Israel Antiquities Authority’s Dead Sea Scrolls Unit. He also served as a senior archaeologist for the IAA’s Jerusalem district.

T.J. Wray (Book Review: What New Testament Women Were Really Like) is Professor of Religious and Theological Studies at Salve Regina University. She focuses on biblical women, grief experience, and Bible education.

Sarah K. Yeomans (Constantinople: Christianity’s First Capital), Ph.D., the University of Southern California, was a Fulbright Fellow in Turkey in 2021–2022 and is a current fellow at the American Research Institute in Turkey.

Jeffrey R. Zorn (Who Did It? and Milestone: Ilan Sharon (1953–2023)) is Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Near Eastern Studies at Cornell University. He has worked extensively at Tel Dor.

Caption Contest

ERIC CARLSON

“Goodness gracious, great Baals of fire!”
—Trenton R. Ferro, Shorewood, Illinois

Thank you to all those who submitted caption entries for our Spring 2023 cartoon (left), based on 1 Kings 18:38: “Then the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt offering, the wood, the stones, and the dust and even licked up the water that was in the trench.” We are pleased to congratulate Trenton R. Ferro of Shorewood, Illinois, who wrote the winning caption, and our runners-up:

RUNNERS UP:

“Whoa! Where’s the beef?”
—Bruce B. Beach, Crossville, Tennessee

And God said, “Let there be s’mores!”
—Fern Nissenbaum, Brooklyn, New York

HONORABLE MENTIONS:

“We’d better Baal!”
—Walter Marlowe, Leuven, Belgium

“But I wanted it medium rare!”
—Owen Camp, Chattanooga, Tennessee

ERIC CARLSON

For additional caption entries, as well as past cartoons and captions, please visit biblicalarchaeology.org/captioncontest.

Write a caption for the cartoon (right) based on Acts 2:3–4: “Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.” Submit it via our website at biblicalarchaeology.org/captioncontest.

Please include your name and address. The deadline for entries is November 15, 2023. The author of the winning caption will receive a BAS All-Access membership and three gift subscriptions to give BAR to friends. Runners-up will receive an All-Access membership and two gift subscriptions for friends.

Queries & Comments

_____

Thank you for sharing your thoughts and comments about our Spring 2023 issue. We appreciate your feedback. Here are a few of the letters and responses we received. Find more online at biblicalarchaeology.org/letters.

Hearing from the Experts

I find your content unique and informative. Unlike other popular publications in archaeology, BAR articles are written by actual researchers, not by people summarizing or interpreting studies carried out by others. This is invaluable. In a world where information is often manipulated to achieve the desired effect, reading the primary sources and expert interpretations is of paramount importance.

JOSE M. PAREDES
FLOSSMOOR, ILLINOIS

Jesus in the Synagogue

As I read Jordan Ryan’s “Jesus in the Synagogue,” it occurred to me that ancient synagogues, with their sections facing each other across an empty square, were not just for debate and discussion; perhaps a main purpose of this seating arrangement was to facilitate singing.

TOM KANE
FLORESVILLE, TEXAS

JORDAN RYAN RESPONDS:
I wouldn’t rule out the possibility that synagogue architecture facilitated singing. The challenge is that we do not have much evidence for singing practices in the early Roman period. We do, however, have quite a few references to congregational discussion in synagogue settings (see pp. 40–41 of the article). Architectural parallels are also important to consider, since synagogue seating plans are similar to public buildings designed for discussion in the Hellenistic world, especially the ekklesiasterion and the bouleuterion. It is then reasonable to connect the architectural form to discussion and possibly other things that went on in synagogues, including singing.

David in the Mesha Stele

Looking at the article “Set in Stone? Another Look at the Mesha Stele,” by Matthieu Richelle and Andrew Burlingame, I see something all have overlooked. The dalet that forms the first letter of dwd is there, but not the long line that Lemaire and Delorme think is its bottom piece. Instead, in Image C (p. 57), there is a triangle on its side that represents that dalet. This triangle is tilted, as the final dalet and all three letters show a consistent upward angle. While I agree the tav in the preceding word bt (“house”) is speculative, what remains is still about David. Given this context, “House of David” still makes the most sense.

ANDREW GABRIEL ROTH
WOODSTOCK, GEORGIA

RICHELLE AND BURLINGAME RESPOND:
The dark shape to the bottom right of the waw actually has the shape of a small bet and is a “ghost” letter (one that looks like it’s there but actually isn’t). It was likely created by a stain or deterioration affecting the squeeze or the stone, but it is too far beneath the line of writing to reflect an engraved sign.

I read both articles on the Mesha Stele carefully, and I have a question for Richelle and Burlingame: If the letters in question do not translate to “House of David,” how else would they translate the text?

WILLIAM SIEG
MONUMENT, COLORADO

RICHELLE AND BURLINGAME RESPOND:
The focus of our article was the epigraphic readings (i.e., what can be deciphered on the stela), not possible reconstructions and translations. Several reconstructions are possible, including “House of David,” but we argue that there is simply insufficient evidence to confirm the reading, which leaves considerable room to debate other possibilities.

Sorry, but the authors of “Set in Stone?” get it all wrong. The tav, though faintly preserved, is uncontestable. Lemaire and Delorme draw the left diagonal of the X-shape (in red) in Photo A too vertically, though it is pretty clear in Photo B (p. 57). And the dot on the left is just that: a second word divider. So I’d go with Lemaire and Delorme’s expertise—and my own eyes—to read btdwd. Long live the king!

ROY D. KOTANSKY
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA

RICHELLE AND BURLINGAME RESPOND:
Images like Photo B may give the impression that a stroke is present, but this does not hold up under direct examination of the stone or the new digital images, which is why our colleagues rightly did not use the line that you see. Our arguments about the dot are available in our article, but we are happy to agree to disagree. Long live the debate!

Ancient Bathtubs

Laura Mazow’s article on the use of bathtub-shaped ceramic containers for fulling was very interesting (“Why All Tubs Are Not Bathtubs”). But such ceramic tubs, with the same thick squarish rim, rope band decoration, and handles at both ends, were also used for coffins, as attested by finds in funerary contexts. Such tub coffins (including some in metal) are best known from Mesopotamia. Their use as burial receptacles likely spread west with the arrival of the Assyrians in the Levant in the latter part of the eighth century BCE.

JEFFREY R. ZORN
ADJUNCT ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR
CORNELL UNIVERSITY
ITHACA, NEW YORK

LAURA MAZOW RESPONDS:
Funerary contexts probably represent secondary uses of these vessels, similar to the way storage jars were often reused for burials. Bath-shaped vessels appear together with a wide variety of other burial practices in both the southern Levant and Mesopotamia. Of the vessels I examined, an almost equal number were found in burial and non-burial contexts. Significantly, at sites that have these vessels in both contexts, non-burial examples typically predate those found in burials. Additionally, the Mesopotamian non-burial ones, just like those in the southern Levant, are often found with weaving tools.

Similarly, although it is assumed that metal vessels were considered too valuable to have a technological use, observations of early 20th-century village life suggest that copper tubs were used in laundry, fulling, and tanning, and that metal tubs may have been preferable.

Paul and Prostitutes

BARBETTE STANLEY SPAETH, in her article “Paul, Prostitutes, and the Cult of Aphrodite in Corinth,” states that Paul in 1 Corinthians 6 would more likely have been talking about consorting with prostitutes rather than women associated with Aphrodite’s cult, who, Spaeth argues, likely were not involved in sexualized ritual activities. However, the term “prostitu-tion, fornication” (porneia) is often used as a metaphor for idol worship, even when this porneia did not involve sex. The Book of Ezekiel uses many sexual metaphors in this way, while “adultery” is also often used to imply idol worship. Revelation 17:15 states that the kings of the earth committed fornication (porneia) with Rome. Surely these kings weren’t having sex with Rome. Perhaps, then, Paul was talking about some kind of idolatrous behavior.

DAN WAGLE
DECATUR, GEORGIA

BARBETTE STANLEY SPAETH RESPONDS:
Since there was no sacred prostitution in Corinth, I suggested that when Paul referred to porneia, he meant common prostitution. Although the Septuagint and New Testament may sometimes use porneia to mean “fornication” or even “idol wor-ship,” the Corinthians without a Jewish background would have understood the term in its original meaning as prostitution. When Paul notes the Corinthian Christians had been “bought for a price,” he makes a comparison between the prostitute’s body and the Christian’s, which only makes sense if we take the terms literally: The prostitute’s body is sold for an immoral sexual purpose; the Christian’s body is bought through Jesus’s suffering for the purpose of salvation.

The Horns of Moses

In his article “The Horns of Moses,” Lee M. Jefferson cites the earliest visual representation of Moses with horns in the 11th-century Old English Illustrated Hexateuch. In my book, Moses the Egyptian in the Illustrated Old English Hexateuch (2017), I proposed that a likely source for Jerome’s Latin translation of the Hebrew text of Exodus 34:29 as “cornuta esset facies sua,” and its association with radiance and light, was his familiarity with the image of the Roman god Pan described in Servius’s fourth-century commentary on Virgil’s Second Eclogue, where Servius says of Pan that “his horns are like the rays of the sun and the horns of the moon.” Servius, like Jerome, had been a student of Virgil’s commentator, Donatus, and thus Jerome would likely have been familiar with this metaphoric equation of horns with light, a widespread visual attribute of ancient Near Eastern deities, Egyptian gods and pharaohs, and Hellenistic kings such as Alexander the Great.

HERBERT R. BRODERICK
PROFESSOR
LEHMAN COLLEGE/CUNY
BRONX, NEW YORK

LEE M. JEFFERSON RESPONDS:
Although the Pan connection is interesting, I prefer to think that Jerome was less influenced by polytheistic connections and more by the larger history of textual interpretation through his training in Hebrew and study of the Alexandrian interpretive tradition of the Septuagint.

For more on the origins of the “horns of Moses,” see Gary A. Rendsburg’s article.—ED.