Katharina Schmidt is Director of the W.F. Albright Institute of Archaeological Research in Jerusalem. Before coming to Jerusalem, she served as Director for the German Protestant Institute for Archaeology in Amman, Jordan. Dr. Schmidt has done fieldwork throughout the Near East, including Jordan, Syria, and Turkey. Since 2016, she has directed the Tall Zira´a excavation project in Jordan and runs the “Edomite Hilltop Settlements” project focusing on remote sensing with Piotr Bienkowski and Mohammad Al Najar. Her research focuses on the Bronze and Iron Ages in the Eastern Mediterranean and Mesopotamia, ancient glass and glassmaking, and Iron Age statuary. A particular focus of her current research is on the Iron Age kingdom of Ammon. Her major book publications include Glass and Glass Production in the Near East during the Iron Age. Evidence from Objects, Texts and Chemical Analysis (2019), Tall Zirā´a. The 2018 and 2019 Excavation Campaigns. The Iron Age, Hellenistic and Early Roman Period in Area 2 (2022), and Tall Zirā‛a. Mirror of Jordan´s History. Special exhibition catalog (co-edited with J. Häser, 2019).
Spring Bible & Archaeology Fest 2023
The Archaeology of the Amman Citadel in the Iron Age
The Iron Age kingdom of Ammon was situated between the regional powers Israel, Judah, and Damascus but was also on the fringes of the Neo-Assyrian and Neo-Babylonian Empires, the first empires of ancient Near Eastern history. The royal capital and center of the Ammonite kingdom was Rabbot-Ammon, which is still preserved today with the Amman Citadel in modern Jordan. Given the importance of this site, the Amman Citadel has been subjected to various archaeological excavations. In particular, the Iron Age remains of monumental architecture and its sculpture, as well as the often large-scale Ammonite statuary, give us an idea about the representation of the Ammonite royalty and its elite circles. The paper focuses on the Amman Citadel and its archaeological remains by taking the kingdom’s overall geographical and geopolitical situation into account. This enables an archaeological argument on the significance and peculiarity of Ammonite material culture.