Photo by Zev Radovan, courtesy Yizhar Hirschfeld

ON THE COVER: A marble panther head found at Ramat Hanadiv, in northern Israel, looks intimidating but its purpose was far from hostile: It was part of the leg of a garden table that once graced the courtyard of a posh Herodian estate in the Lower Galilee. In “A Country Gentleman’s Estate,”Yizhar Hirschfeld describes the estate, its fortified manor house, baths and other sumptuous installations. He argues that the estate was once the possession of a high-ranking member of Herodian-Jewish society, perhaps someone very close to Herod and the Romans.