[b-hebrew] ? David's palace in Jerusalem

Yitzhak Sapir yitzhaksapir at gmail.com
Fri Aug 5 04:42:47 EDT 2005

On 8/5/05, Yigal Levin kindly refered us to:
> >From
> <http://www.nytimes.com/2005/08/05/international/middleeast/05jerusa

> Other scholars are skeptical that the foundation walls discovered
> by the archaeologist, Eilat Mazar, are David's palace. But they
> acknowledge that what she has uncovered is rare and important: a
> major public building from around the 10th century B.C., with
> pottery shards that date to the time of David and Solomon and a
> government seal of an official mentioned in the book of Jeremiah.

Finkelstein will probably automatically date those shards to the 9th
century.  Still it is interesting whether there is a "Solomonic gate" here.  I
have wondered why there isn't a "Solomonic gate" in Jerusalem.  It appears
to me to be one of the biggest obstacles to identifying the "Solomonic
gates" with Solomon.

> Ms. Mazar believes she has found a riposte: a large public
> building, with at least some pottery of the time, and a bulla, or
> governmental seal, of an official - Jehucal (or Jucal), son of
> Shelemiah, son of Shevi - who is mentioned at least twice in the
> Book of Jeremiah.

First it's yhwdy bn $lmyh.
Next it's yhwkl bn $lmyhw bn nwby
Now it's (apparently) yhwkl bn $lmyh bn $by

At least it seems to be converging.  Also, this last one appears to be the
reading by the archaeologist itself, which lends it more credibilty.  Perhaps
it was yhwkl bn $lmyhw on the seal and the reproduction here attempts to
match it with the Biblical spelling in Jeremiah 37?

> The building can be reasonably dated by the pottery found above and
> below it. Ms. Mazar found on the bedrock a large floor of crushed
> limestone, indicating a large public space. The floor and fill
> above it contain pottery from Iron Age I of the 12th to 11th
> centuries B.C., just before David conquered Jerusalem.

So I suppose Finkelstein can't still claim that it doesn't even have shards
from the 10th century because now, those 11th century shards are 10th
century shards, by his reckoning.

> The archaeological debate is also partly a debate over the roots of
> Zionism and the effort to find Jewish origins deep in the land. Ms.
> Mazar's latest dig, which has cost about $500,000, has been
> sponsored by Roger Hertog, a New York financier who is vice
> chairman of Alliance Capital Management. Mr. Hertog, who owns a
> piece of The New York Sun and The New Republic, is also chairman of
> the board of the Shalem Center in Jerusalem, where Ms. Mazar is a
> senior fellow.

Is this why it got into the New York Sun ahead of everyone else?

Also, the official IAA press release regarding the nearby digs at the
City of David
which was also reported by Maariv is here: 


Yitzhak Sapir

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