University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Athropology

Author: James B. Pritchard

The Wine Industry at Gibeon

Photo of men standing by cellar holes.
1959 Discoveries

By: James B. Pritchard

In a Near Eastern country such as Jordan an archaeologist learns quickly that it is usually best to discount, if not disregard completely, local rumors about ancient wonders which lie underground. Too often these alleged treasures have been found to exist only in hear-say embroidered by folk imagination. Yet, what seemed to be a highly […]

The Bible Reports on Gibeon

image of handle

By: James B. Pritchard

A new dimension was added to the archaeological remains at el-Jib by the discovery in 1956 of a handle from a wine jug on which were scratched the four letters GBcN, the Hebrew spelling of the well-known biblical city of Gibeon. In the three subsequent campaigns twenty-nine more handles inscribed with “Gibeon” were found. This […]

Civil Defense at Gibeon

photo of etching into wall
"Gibeon was a great city...and all its men were mighty" - Joshua 10:2

By: James B. Pritchard

Defense was the most important single consideration in the planning and building of a city in Biblical Palestine, a land whose history is replete with accounts of destructive raids, invasions, and civil wars. In the five seasons of the Museum’s excavations at Gibeon we have found the defense of the city, which proved to be […]

Two Tombs and a Tunnel in the Jordan Valley

Discoveries at the Biblical Zarethan

By: James B. Pritchard

The cutting of the first trench into any large antiquity site is bound to be significant, especially if the mound lies in an area which is unknown archaeologically. Our first two months of digging at the virgin site of Tell es-Sa’idiyeh were not only productive of valuable information about the culture and history of the […]

Reconnaissance in Jordan

By: James B. Pritchard

“How do you go about finding a site for excavation?” is a question frequently put to an archaeologist. With the completion of five seasons of work at el-Jib, the ancient Gibeon, James B. Pritchard was sent to Jordan in May to search for another biblical site which the Museum might excavate profitably. In the following […]

A Cosmopolitan Culture of the Late Bronze Age

Photo of people over skeleton

By: James B. Pritchard

Surely them ost surprising and possibly the most significant result achieved from two seasons of digging at Tell es-Sa’idiyeh was the discovery that there had been a sophisticated and cosmopolitan culture at the site during the Late Bronze Age. One has learned to expect something more than provincial artifacts at ancient cities along the seacoast within easy […]

An Eighth Century Traveller

By: James B. Pritchard

One of the most intriguing artifacts discovered in four seasons of excavation at Tell es-Sa’idiyeh in Jordan is the small clay statue found on February 17, 1967. I first heard of the discovery when Dr. John Huesman, S.J., field director of the staff of ten who made up the 1967 expedition, telephoned me in Beirut, […]

The Palace of Tell es-Sa’idiyeh

By: James B. Pritchard

Since we began to excavate at Tell es-Sa’idiyeh in 1964 not a season has gone by without our gaining some vivid impression of how man had lived at some period within the 3000-year span that this tell was inhabited. There were tombs of both rich and poor from the 12th century B.C. that revealed details of […]

The Phoenicians in Their Homeland

By: James B. Pritchard

The Phoenician expansion westward for three thousand miles across the Mediterranean and beyond to the shores of the Atlantic was a response to pressure. In the thirteenth and twelfth centuries B.C. the Canaanites of Palestine-Syria found themselves hard-pressed by the arrival of new and hostile peoples in what had long been their fertile homeland. Hebrews infiltrated […]