Philistine Gath Bowl (1000 BCE)
(August 10, 2022) The Philistine letter style at this time was was becoming more cursive indicating it was mostly being scratched or inked on pottery shards and pieces of wood. Compare their text style with others with the Letter Class Comparison Chart on this site.
Philistine Gath (Tell es-Safi) Red Bowl Held Food Offerings for Hekate - 1000 BCE
(Jan 29, 2023) This previously untranslated Alphabetic Akkadian text was found at Tell es-Safi which was the Philistine city of Gath. This shard is from a bowl with a smooth red slip. It reads (right to left):
Translation in Akkadian (Levant Text 9)(read right to left. Capital letters on object. Small letters are inferred Inner vowels)
- A Bu KaTe |
- Ku Bu
- This is for nourishing Kate (Hekate) |
- On account of nourishing t[ ]
This text was first reported in 2006 and published in 2008. It is on a type of pottery which belonged to to the time between the late Iron Age I to early Iron IIA. This dates it to about 1000 BCE. Gath was the reported home of Goliath in the Bible (1 Samuel 17).
This pottery shard was found in an industrial/commercial area as a cast-away on the floor of a heavily used room. Based upon the number of bones on the floor this room seems to have been a food preparation area. The bowl has a thin red slip which allowed the letters to be scratched with little effort.
ReferencesOlmsted, D.D. (August 2020-2) Three Religiously Themed Philistine Texts in Alphabetic Akkadian (1160-960 BCE). Humanities Commons Permanent URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/yz0s-rh08. Online at: https://www.academia.edu/43968796/Three_Religiously_Themed_Philistine_Texts_in_Alphabetic_Akkadian_1160_960_BCE
Maeir, M. A., Wimmer, S.J. Zukerman, A. Demsky, A. (2008) A Late Iron Age I/ Early Iron Age II Old Canaanite Inscription from Tell eş-Şafi/Gath Israel: Paleography, Dating, and Historical Cultural Significance. Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research. No. 351 pp. 39-71. Online at: https://www.academia.edu/1403842/A_Late_Iron_Age_I_Early_Iron_Age_II_Old_Canaanite_Inscription_from_Tell_e_-_afi_Gath_Israel_Palaeography_Dating_and_Historical-Cultural_Significance
Philistine Text Sites
(August 10, 2022) Genetic studies show the Philistines were mostly European/Aegean in origin. A recent study compared 10 Bronze and Iron Age individuals from the Philistine city of Ashkelon. They found that the early Iron Age population of this city was genetically distinct from the Bronze Age people yet this genetic difference was no longer detectible in the later Iron Age population.
ReferencesFeldman, M; Master, D.M; Bianco, R.A.; Burri, M.; Stockhammer, P.W.; Mittnik, A.; Aja, A.J.; Jeong, C..; and Krause, J. (July 2019) Ancient DNA sheds light on the genetic origins of early Iron Age Philistines. Science Advances 03 Jul 2019: Vol. 5, no. 7, eaax0061. DOI: 0.1126/sciadv.aax0061. Online at: https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/5/7/eaax0061.full
Droughts Defined the Archaeological Periods in the Levant
(August 9, 2022) Like most regions of the earth, correlating the archaeology of the southern levant with carbon 14 dating and absolute dating has been undergoing some debate. The best correlation with linguistics is the chronology proposed by Amihai Mazar in 2014. This chronology is reproduced below:
ReferencesLangut, D. Finkelsein, I, Litt, T. (2013) Climate and the Late Bronze Collapse: New Evidence from the Levant. Tel Aviv 40:149-175. Online at https://www.academia.edu/6053886/Climate_and_the_Late_Bronze_Collapse_New_Evidence_from_the_Southern_Levant
Mazar, Amihai (2005) The Debate over the Chronology of the Iron Age in the Southern Levant: its History, the Current Situation and a Suggested Resolution. pp. 15-30 in: T. Levy and T. Higham (editors), The Bible and Radiocarbon Dating - Archaeology, Text and Science. London. Online at: https://www.academia.edu/2632501/The_Debate_over_the_Chronology_of_the_Iron_Age_in_the_Southern_Levant_its_History_the_Current_Situation_and_a_Suggested_Resolution_2005
Translation Resources Used
All texts translated to the scholar's standard.
Lexicon UsedOlmsted, D.D (January 1, 2022) Mediterranean Akkadian Lexicon 3rd Edition – 2022. DOI Permanent URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/nbb6-wg16. Online at: https://www.academia.edu/66851810/Mediterranean_Akkadian_Lexicon_3rd_Edition_2022
Letter Charts UsedLetter Class Comparison ChartCentral Mediterranean Iron Age Letters