Joe Uziel is an archaeologist at the Israel Antiquities Authority, Jerusalem District, where he excavates in the City of David, Davidson Center and Western Wall Tunnels. Joe completed his PhD at Bar Ilan University on the Middle Bronze Age in the southern Coastal Plain, and now focuses his research on the history and archaeology of Jerusalem, from its earliest urban establishment some 4000 years ago until late antiquity. Joe has advanced methods applied in the field, using new technologies in order to learn about Jerusalem's ancient population through the application of new tools. Recent discoveries made by Joe and his teams in the field include buildings dating from the First Temple Period, the main street of Second Temple Jerusalem and a Roman theater-like structure, the first such building to be discovered in Jerusalem.
Bible & Archaeology Fest XXIV, October 16 – 17, 2021
New thoughts on Jerusalem’s Waters and their Force in Shaping the City
Despite certain debates regarding the location of ancient Jerusalem, most scholars would agree that the spring at the foot of the southeastern hill – i.e., the City of David – was an important factor in the development of the city, particularly during the rule of the kings of Judah. In the following lecture, I will explore several factors that play into the importance of the spring, pondering on questions of its religious and symbolic meaning and when the spring waters became holy. As will be suggested here, this was a relatively late occurrence in the history of the spring, dating to the Second Temple Period. In contrast, it will be suggested that the waters’ force was one which shaped the initial village of Jerusalem in its early days, while it’s later manipulation is what allowed for the city to expand to new areas. As opposed to the more common opinion that the movement of the waters followed the growth of the city, I will suggest that only once the waters were diverted from the spring was the city able to expand.
Bible & Archaeology Fest XXIII, October 24 – 25, 2020
The Capital of Judah In Its Early Days: New Thoughts and Ponderings
Excavations in Jerusalem have yielded extensive evidence relating to the capital city of Iron Age Judah in the late 8th century BCE onward, with clear evidence of monumental architecture, fortifications, water works and administration. The scarce evidence for the earlier days of the Judahite monarchy have led to fierce debates regarding the character of the city and kingdom. In the following lecture, we will focus on this period in trying to define the character of Jerusalem in the 10th and 9th centuries BCE, based on a reevaluation of old evidence and the presentation of new evidence from the field.
Bible & Archaeology Fest XXII, November 22 – 24, 2019 Panelist