Saturday, December 02, 2017

Pigeons and doves

THE ASOR BLOG: Not Just for the Birds: Pigeons in the Roman and Byzantine Near East (Jennifer Ramsay). Doves are, of course, mentioned occasionally in the Bible. Then there's this:
Archaeologically we know that pigeon-rearing was already well established on the southern coastal plains of the Levant by the Hellenistic period. Hundreds of hewn underground installations date to this period and there are also many structures from the Roman and Byzantine Periods all over the region. Pigeon structures have been identified in archaeological contexts at Jericho, Jerusalem, Masada, Herodium, and Petra, to name a few. A newly discovered dovecote at ‘Ain al-Baida/‘Amman in Jordan, dating to the Iron Age, may help date other regional dovecotes to earlier periods than originally assumed. An excellent example of pictorial evidence dated to 100 BCE comes from a scene on the Palestrina mosaic located east of Rome at the sanctuary of Fortuna Primagenia. The mosaic illustrates landscape scenes along the Nile and includes an often overlooked example of a pigeon tower.
And there's also that Masada miniseries, "The Dovekeepers." Plus much else of interest in this essay.

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