Saturday, October 18, 2003


LATER: I think my favorite is The Last Temptation of Christ, because I like its development of "Gnostic" themes (follow the link for some details). Which ones do other history bloggers like best? And why?

Friday, October 17, 2003

THE WORLD MONUMENT FUND has released a list of the one hundred most endangered archaeological sites. Ten of them are in the Middle East. (Scroll down and - mostly - up to see the other ninety. Via Archaeology Magazine News.)
MEDITATIONS ON THE TEMPLE LIBRARY for Simchat Torah (which is coming up on Sunday).
FOLLOW THE LINK for some images from the "Dead Sea Scrolls to the Hidden Book" exhibit in Dallas (heads-up, Stephen Goranson).

Penn State is seeking candidates for a rank-open, tenure-line appointment in Hebrew. Tenure-track or tenured according to rank and qualifications. Starting date: August 2004 preferred. Ph.D. in Hebrew, Comparative Literature, Near Eastern Studies, Jewish Studies, or related field, and relevant teaching experience required. Candidates must have broad knowledge of the Hebrew language: areas of further specialization and research program may include (but are not limited to) Classical, Rabbinic or Modern Hebrew, comparative approaches to Hebrew texts (including ancient, medieval, and/or modern), comparative Semitics, classical Hebrew elements in later literatures, literatures of the diaspora and Israel, Israelite or Jewish texts, parshanut or Jewish thought. Ability to teach Hebrew at all levels of the curriculum required. Knowledge of additional languages a plus. The successful candidate will help direct and develop our Hebrew language curriculum. S/he will hold an appointment in the Jewish Studies Program, with a tenure home, as appropriate, in the Department of Comparative Literature or the Department of Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies or another unit. Salary competitive. Our tenure-track teaching load is 4 courses per year (2 per semester). Applications received by November 17, 2003, will receive full consideration; however, all applications will be considered until the position is filled. Send letter, c.v., and names and addresses of 3 references to Chair, Hebrew Search Committee, c/o Cindy Bierly, Box CB, Department of Comparative Literature, 311 Burrowes Building, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802 USA. Applications may also be sent by email to or by Fax to (814) 863-8882. Penn State is committed to Affirmative Action, equal opportunity, and the diversity of its workforce.

Cindy Bierly (
Administrative Assistant I
School of Languages and Literatures
College of the Liberal Arts
311 Burrowes Building
The Pennsylvania State University
University Park, PA 16802-6203
(814) 865-1168
FAX: (814) 863-8882

Wednesday, October 15, 2003

THE "PETRA: LOST CITY OF STONE" EXHIBIT at the American Museum of Natural History opens Saturday (via Rogue Classicism).
AN EARLY PAPYRUS FRAGMENT OF THE GOSPEL OF JOHN has become the subject of a big lawsuit.
JESUS IN THE TALMUD: Mel Gibson's The Passion and Sanhedrin 43a have been generating some debate among Jews, started by an article by Steven Bayme. The article has been taken down, but you can read the Google cache copy here. More rabbinic passages that deal with Jesus, or may deal with him, can be found at Alan Humm's Ancient Jewish Accounts of Jesus website. The Talmud, of course, gives no new useful historical information about Jesus but, for what it's worth, it does tell us what kind of spin Babylonian rabbis c. 400 C.E. wanted to put on the Jesus story. How much should that inform the current discussion? I blog, you decide.

Tuesday, October 14, 2003

PRETTY QUIET on the PaleoJudaic front in the media, and I'm pretty busy here, but ancient Aramaic is represented in the current news by roundup articles on Mel Gibson's The Passion and the San Antonio Vocal Arts Ensemble.

Monday, October 13, 2003

AN ISRAELITE HOUSE IN 12TH CENTURY B.C.E. EGYPT? Maybe. Does it prove the Exodus happened? No. (Via Archaeologica News.)
THE UNOFFICIAL "GENEVA ACCORDS" would grant sovereignty of the Temple Mount to the Palestinians. According to the New York Times:

On another delicate issue, the plan calls for the Palestinians to have ultimate control over Jerusalem's most important and contested holy site, the mosque compound in East Jerusalem, called the Noble Sanctuary by Muslims. Israel would relinquish its claim of sovereignty over the site, which Jews call the Temple Mount. Israel would keep full control of the Western Wall, the Jewish place of prayer that borders the compound.

More here in the Guardian.

Sorry for the light posting lately. Family things are not leaving much time for blogging.

Sunday, October 12, 2003

MARK GOODACRE has redesigned the main page of his vast New Testament Gateway website. This is a trial-run page, not the real main page, as he explains here (and scroll up to the next post too). He's asking for feedback, so have a look and let him know what you think. Looks great Mark.