Friday, March 11, 2022

Where, if anywhere, was Tarshish?

DR. TZILLA ESHEL: Tarshish: The Origins of Solomon’s Silver (
In a joint venture, the Phoenician King Hiram and King Solomon go to Tarshish to bring back silver—the Levant has no silver deposits of its own. Where is Tarshish? Archaeological science, specifically, the ability to trace the chemical fingerprint of silver, and Phoenician inscriptions such as the Nora Stone, point us to the answer(s).
For more on the use of lead isotopes to track the movements of Phoencian silver, see here. For more on the possible whereabouts of Tarshish, if it was a place, see here.

The word Tarshish can also mean a type of precious stone in Hebrew (chrysolite or topaz? Cf., e.g., Ezekiel 28:13). And, as Philologos noted, it nearly became the Modern Hebrew name of the planet Neptune.

Cross-file under Phoenician Watch and Ancient Material Culture.

Visit PaleoJudaica daily for the latest news on ancient Judaism and the biblical world.