Courtesy of Aren Maeir, The Tell es-Safi/Gath Archaeological Project

Vessels recovered from Philistine Gath (Tell es-Safi) may provide new insight into the meaning of the Biblical ‘opalim. Our author argues that this new evidence suggests that the Philistines were laid low not by hemorrhoids or tumors, but rather by a direct assault on their manhood. These and other Philistine situlae (small vial-shaped vessels) may give us a good idea of what the golden ‘opalim of 1 Samuel 6 looked like.