Zev Radovan, City of David Archaeological Expedition

A South Arabian name in the form of a monograph, on a piece of locally made pottery, was carved in South Arabian script. The letter lamed () is combined twice with the letter khet () to create the monograph . Thus, the name can be understood as khll. The sign stand for the letter ayin or for a magic symbol that typically accompanied such names.

Shiloh also found two other sherds with South Arabian names. Who were these sojourners in Jerusalem with South Arabian names? They may have been the middlemen in the famous incense trade that connected South Arabia with Edom, Judah and places farther north. Or they may have been members of the Arab tribes that Sargon II transferred from North Arabia to the new province of Samaria after he conquered Israelite Samaria in 721 B.C.

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