Amihai Mazar is the Eleazar Sukenik Chair of the Archaeology of Israel at the Institute of Archaeology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His primary fields of research include the archaeology of the Levant in the Bronze and Iron Ages as well as the relationship between archaeology and Old Testament history. He has directed numerous excavations, including Tell Qasile (1973–1974, 1982–1988), Tel Batash (Biblical Timnah) (1977–1989), Tel Beth Shean (1989–1996) and Tel Rehov (1997–2010). Dr. Mazar’s many publications include Archaeology of the Land of the Bible (New York 1990), a text that is well-received and frequently utilized in university courses worldwide. He has held the positions of chairman at the Institute of Archaeology of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem (1995–1998), editor of the Hebrew magazine Qadmoniot (1994–1995) and co-editor of the Israel ExplorationJournal (from 2010). Professor Mazar has also been a member of the council of the Israel Antiquities Authority (2000–2005), and is the recipient of the Israel Prize in archaeological research (2009).
Bible & Archaeology Fest XIII, November 19 – 21, 2010
Beth Shean: Biblical Traditions and Archaeological Reality
Tel Beth Shean is one of the most prominent tells in Israel, and is well known due to large scale excavations that have been conducted there over the course of the last century. This presentation will first summarize many of the rich discoveries in Beth Shean from the late 4th Millennium BCE until the end of the Iron Age. Particularly important is the period of Egyptian domination during the Late Bronze Age, when Beth Shean was an Egyptian garrison town. This site is referred to in several of the Biblical texts, the most well-known of which is the story of the death of Saul. This presentation will further examine historicity of the narrative in light of the archaeological discoveries at Beth Shean.