The Huqoq Excavation Project is excavating a fifth-century C.E. synagogue at Huqoq, an ancient village in Israel’s Lower Eastern Galilee located three miles west of Magdala (home of Mary Magdalene) and Capernaum (where Jesus taught in the synagogue). Below, learn what comprises Huqoq archaeologist Brian Coussens’s toolkit. For more on Huqoq’s 2015 field season, read “The Logistics of a Dig.”
Area supervisor Brian Coussens is known at the site for his extensive archaeological toolkit. Here’s a peek at his daily essentials:
Photo: Courtesy Huqoq Excavation Project
1. Writing utensils (four-color pens, pencils, permanent markers, ruler)
2. Field notebook for recording elevations, site plans and notes
3. Water—an essential for every archaeologist!
5. Scaled ruler for creating scaled drawings of buildings and features
6. Margin trowel
7. File for sharpening trowel
8. Handpick (or, in Hebrew, patishon)
9. Leaf trowel
10. Regular trowel (Marshalltown, Philadelphia style)
11. Paintbrush for dusting delicate artifacts
12. Neon string for marking baulks
13. Small tape measure
14. Large tape measure
15. Shaving brush for dusting
18. Dental pick for articulating delicate items
19. Bamboo picks
Jocelyn Burney is pursuing a Master of Arts in Religion at Yale Divinity School.
Have you ever wondered what it’s like to volunteer on an archaeological dig? I Volunteered For This?! Life on an Archaeological Dig is a free eBook that gives you the lowdown on what to expect from life at a dig site. You’ll be glad to have this informative, amusing and sometimes touching collection of articles by archaeological dig volunteers.
A Samson Mosaic from Huqoq: A Bible History Daily introduction to the Huqoq excavations.
Mosaic Inscription from a Synagogue at Horvat Huqoq: Huqoq excavator David Amit provides a translation of the mosaic text between two female faces in the Huqoq synagogue.
The Huqoq Synagogue Mosaics: Huqoq mosaics specialist Karen Britt provides a detailed artistic analysis of a Huqoq mosaic featuring an inscription and two female faces.
New Huqoq Mosaics: The 2013 excavations revealed additional depictions of Samson in the Bible and a possible portrayal of a scene from the Apocrypha.
Jodi Magness Reflects on a Lucky Discovery: In her Archaeological Views column in the March/April 2015 issue of BAR, Jodi Magness reflects on the consequences of discovering stunning mosaics at Huqoq.
Huqoq 2014: Update from the Field: Huqoq excavation director Jodi Magness and mosaics specialist Karen Britt discuss a new mosaic discovered during the 2014 excavation season. Could the mosaic be a depiction of the legendary meeting between Alexander the Great and the Jewish high priest?
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