Published On: Mon, Apr 27th, 2015

First Temple era pottery, Ostracon, confirms Bible, Book of Jeremiah

Archaeologists, meteorologists and physicists in Israel are working to decipher the meaning of inscriptions found on 2,500-year-old pottery fragments from the First Temple-era. The fragment is known as ostracon.

More than 100 ostraca written in Paleo-Hebrew script have been found in Arad in southern Israel. One of the inscriptions describes the book of Jeremiah.

“Even more gripping is the tale told by perhaps the most known ostracon from the period, which was found in Lachish, the largest Judahite town after Jerusalem. In the dispatch, an official stationed outside the city reports to his commander on the fall of a nearby stronghold, saying that ‘we can see the signals from Lachish, but we no longer see Azekah.’…Scholars have taken this as a confirmation of the biblical narrative of Jeremiah, which recounts that Azekah and Lachish were the last fortresses of Judah to fall before Jerusalem was besieged and destroyed by the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar II,” the Haaretz reports states from the Tel Aviv University team.

Impression from the seal of Eliashiv ben Ashiyahu  photo/ Israeli Foreign Ministry

Impression from the seal of Eliashiv ben Ashiyahu photo/ Israeli Foreign Ministry

“One of the potsherds from Arad, probably sent to one of Eliashiv’s superior officers, is a panicked note from the king in Jerusalem with an order ‘incumbent upon your very life’ to send reinforcements to nearby Ramat Negeb to counter a threat from the neighboring Edomites…“We don’t know what the response to the message was, but shortly after the order was received, the Edomites, who were allied with the Babylonians, overran the entire area and destroyed the Arad citadel.”

Experts started working to decipher the fragments about six years ago. They use a special camera to take photos of the ostraca to see inscriptions that the human eye cannot see.

“Once, the technician mistakenly photographed the reverse side of an ostracon, which was known to be blank, and the image revealed four clear lines of text there,” mathematician Arie Shaus said to Haaretz reporters. “It had been sitting in a museum for 50 years and nobody ever noticed this.”

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About the Author

- Roxanne "Butter" Bracco began with the Dispatch as Pittsburgh Correspondent, but will be providing reports and insights from Washington DC, Maryland and the surrounding region. Contact Roxie aka "Butter" at theglobaldispatch@gmail ATTN: Roxie or Butter Bracco

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  1. Tembikar Era Bait Suci Pertama, Ostrakon, Mengkonfirmasi Kebenaran Kitab Yeremia – Kitab Henokh says:

    […] First Temple Era Pottery, Ostracon, Confirms Bible, Book Of Jeremiah […]

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