Wednesday, September 09, 2020

More on those Phoenician figurines

PHOENICIAN WATCH: Long-lost Phoenician figurines could reveal secrets to ancient cult. “They were wrapped in newspapers from the 70s and covered in these brittle plastic bags that crumbled as soon as you touched them” (Hannah Brown, Jerusalem Post).

This article gives some new information, especially about the history of the assemblage after its discovery.

Joseph Lauer has also provided a reference for the technical article behind this story: Shipwreck or Sunken Votives? The Shavei Zion Assemblage Revisited (Meir Edrey Adi Erlich Assaf Yasur‐Landau, International Journal of Nautical Archaeology).

It is behind a subscription wall, but I have been able to read it. It answers my question about whether the finds are of Phoenician origin (i.e, from the Levantine coast) or Punic origin (from Carthage and its satellites). The origins of the clay and the pottery forms show clearly that they are of Phoenician origin. That's interesting in that it provides new evidence for the worship of the goddess Tanit in Phoenicia. My understanding (but this is not my expertise) is that there was previously little evidence for that.

Background here. Cross-file under Marine (Maritime, Underwater) Archaeology and Not a Shipwreck.

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