Wednesday, November 02, 2016

Interview with Shmuel Ahituv (Jerusalem papyrus)

AUDIO: Rejuvenation: Beyond the Jerusalem Papyrus Debate (The Land of Israel Network/The Jewish Press).
Israel Prize winner Professor Shmuel Ahituv was one of the first to examine the now famous and controversial ‘Jerusalem Papyrus”. This delightful, unpretentious Biblical Archaeology expert discusses different aspects of the incredibly rare find with Eve in addition to the usual dating and verifying procedures. The role of women in the First Temple period, Jericho’s agriculture, antiquities theft and the keeping of secrets. Who knows what else awaits discovery in the arid Judean Desert?
Lots of interesting details in this interview. The papyrus seems to refer to a female administrative functionary in late Iron Age II Judah. Do we have other evidence for such female administrators or is this new? I didn't find his example convincing. And I note that the word "maidservant" is partially reconstructed. Also, Professor Ahituv clarifies that he dates the script of the papyrus's inscription to the late seventh century BCE, around 600, roughly during the reign of King Josiah.

Background here and links.