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Dr. Gabriel Barkay
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Guest Lecturer

Dr. Gabriel Barkay was born in Hungary in 1944, and immigrated to Israel in 1950. After graduating from Hebrew University summa cum laude where he studied archaeology, comparative religion and geography, he graduated summa cum laude from Tel Aviv University with a Ph.D in archaeology in 1985.

He has participated on various levels in numerous digs, and discovered the Silver Scrolls, two silver amulets that contain the Priestly Benediction (Numbers 6:24-26), which are the earliest recorded biblical verses ( dated to the late-7th century B.C. First Temple period) that mention the name “YHWH.” This makes the amulets the oldest Biblical inscriptions ever found, predating the Dead Sea Scrolls by at least 400 years, and the first mentioning the name of the LORD .

More recently, a 2,700-year-old clay seal was unearthed within the ancient City of David. Under Dr. Barkay’s direction, an archaeological team at the Israel Excavation Society Sifting Project, sifted through the dig site’s debris and discovered the now-famous “Bethlehem Seal” dated to the 7th century B.C. Dr. Barkay was the first to translate the seal’s significant three line inscription which says “In the 7th year, Bethlehem, for the king”.

He has been the director of the Israel Excavation Society Sifting Project since 2004, sifting soil from the Temple Mount area. Tens of thousands of finds have revealed human activity on the site of the Temple Mount covering fifteen thousand years.

Previous excavations include Megiddo, Lachish, Momshit, and Susa in Iran. He has concentrated on
sites in Jerusalem since the 1970s, participating and directing on various levels.

He has also worked on the Siloam village cemeteries of nobility, which included Ketef Hinnom, from which he discovered an early church, possibly St. George’s, which contained the cremation burials of members of the Roman army in burial caves.

Dr. Barkay is the recipient of the 1996 Jerusalem Prize for Archaeological Research, and is a professor at Bar Ilan University in Tel Aviv. He has spent more than 30 years teaching at the American Institute of Holy
Land Studies, and guest lectures at University of the Holy Land in Jerusalem. He is often found showing students artefacts first hand in the Israel Museum, captivating them with the stories of how they were found.

For more information about Dr. Barkay and his archaeological finds, please visit his page, News About Digs.

Education (cont.): 

  • Ph.D. Hebrew University of Jerusalem; Department of Ancient Semitic Languages (2001). Dissertation topic: ‘The Character of the Essene Movement in Light of the Manuscripts Written in Esoteric Script from Qumran.’ Program Director: Prof. Michael Stone (formerly under the direction of Profs. Jonas Greenfield and Moshe Goshen-Gottstein).
  • Visiting Graduate Student, Hebrew University (1982-1983). Course work in Departments of Ancient Semitic Languages, Bible, and Archaeology.
  • M.A. Graduate Theological Union (Franciscan School of Theology), Berkeley, California (l975-l982). Area of specialization: Bible. Thesis topic: “Daniel 7:1-18: Its Structure and Motifs.”
  • B.S. Bethany College, Scotts Valley, California (1972-1974). Majors: Bible/Theology; Preseminary.
  • A.A. De Anza College, Cupertino, California (1970-1972). Major: Liberal Arts.

Linguistic Background:

  • Ancient Languages:
    • Reading knowledge of Hebrew, Aramaic, Syriac, Ugaritic, Koine Greek.
    • Studied for purposes of comparative linguistics: Coptic, Middle Egyptian, Classical Arabic, Ge’ez, Akkadian, Latin.
  • Modern Languages:
    • German, Hebrew, French, Spanish.

Fellowships and Honors: 

  • Senior Research Fellow, Albright Institute of Archaeological Research, 2001-present
  • Research Fellow, Albright Institute of Archaeological Research, Jerusalem, 1997-2000
  • Grant recipient, Shelby White-Leon Levy Foundation for Archaeological Publications, for the Annotated English Edition of The Excavations of Qumran and Ein Feshkha, 2000.
  • Fellow, Orion Centre for the Study of the Dead Sea Scrolls, Jerusalem, 1997-1998
  • Who’s Who in Biblical Studies and Archaeology (Biblical Archaeology Society, 1993)
  • Research Fellow, Albright Institute of Archaeological Research, Jerusalem, 1985
  • Endowment for Biblical Research Fellow, Albright Institute of Archaeological Research, Jerusalem, Fall 1984.

Projects:

  • Director, Nazareth Village Research Project, 1998-present. Reports include: First Century Nazareth: A Preliminary Model for On-going Research (1999); The House: Its Structure as a Living Space (1999); The Synagogue in the First Century CE: Recommendations for the Reconstruction of an Academically Defensible Synagogue in Nazareth (2000); Household Furnishings: a Preliminary Report (2000); The Olive Press in the First Century (2002); Surveys and Excavations at the Nazareth Village Farm, 1996-2002 (in preparation).
  • Editor, The Dead Sea Libraries: Student’s Edition, in preparation. (A practical edition including the vocalized, reconstructed text, based upon readings from numerous manuscripts, divided by sense- units according to chapter and verse, accompanied by a parallel English translation and critical notes).
  • Editor, The Comprehensive Concordance to the Dead Sea Scrolls, in preparation.
  • Contributor, The Comprehensive Aramaic Lexicon, J. Fitzmyer, D. Hillers, and S. Kaufman, eds., in preparation.
  • Contributor, CATSS Project: “The Alignment of the Aramaic and Greek Texts of Ezra and Daniel”, l982-1983; Prof. E. Tov, Project Director.
  • Editor, The Dead Sea Libraries: Student’s Edition, in preparation. (A practical edition including the vocalized, reconstructed text, based upon readings from numerous manuscripts, divided by sense- units according to chapter and verse, accompanied by a parallel English translation and critical notes).

Publications:

CD-ROM

  • Project Director, Christian Pilgrimage to the Holy Land (UHL/CSEC and the Israel Government Ministry of Tourism, 1998)
  • Co-author (in collaboration with Click! Multimedia, Inc., Tel Aviv, Israel), A Disciple’s Diary (Palphot and Thomas Nelson/Word, 1996).
  • Contributor , Encyclopedia Judaica (electronic version) (in press).

PRINTED

  • ‘Scripts and Scribal Practice’ Dictionary of Early Judaism (John Collins and Dan Harlow, eds.; Eerdmans, forthcoming, 2010)
  • ‘Reassessing Qumran’s Calendars’ Enoch and Jubilees (ed. Pierpaolo Bertalotto and Todd Hanneken): Short papers from the Fourth Enoch Seminar at Camaldoli (8-12 July 2007) in Henoch 31/1 (2009) 104-110.
  • ‘On the Nazareth Village Farm Report: A Reply to Salm’ Bulletin of the Anglo-Israel Archaeological Society 26 (2008) 105-108. (with Y. Rapuano)
  • ‘Surveys and Excavation at the Nazareth Village Farm (1997–2002): Final Report’ (with the collaboration of R. Voss and Y. Rapuano). Bulletin of the Anglo-Israel Archaeological Society 25 (2007) 11-71.
  • ‘Reassessing the Judean Desert Caves: Libraries, Archives, Genizas and Hiding Places’ Bulletin of the Anglo-Israel Archaeological Society 25 (2007)139-162.
  • ‘A Reassessment of CJO 703: Mary Magdalene has left the Room’ Near Eastern Archaeologist 70 (2007).
  • ‘Dated Bronze Coinage of the Sabbatical years of Release and the First Jewish City Coin’. Bulletin of the Anglo-Israel Archaeological Society 24 (2006) 101-113.
  • ‘Lots’, Encyclopedia Judaica (New York: Keter and Macmillan Publishers, 2006).
  • ‘Nazareth’, Encyclopedia Judaica (New York: Keter and Macmillan Publishers, 2006).
  • ‘Qumran’, Encyclopedia Judaica (New York: Keter and Macmillan Publishers, 2006).
  • ‘Sundial’, Encyclopedia Judaica (New York: Keter and Macmillan Publishers, 2006).
  • The Dead Sea Libraries: Student’s Edition, in preparation. (A practical edition including the vocalized, reconstructed text, based upon readings from numerous manuscripts, divided by sense-units according to chapter and verse, accompanied by a parallel English translation and critical notes).
  • ‘Educational Suite and Database on Qumran, The Dead Sea Scrolls and the History of the Second Temple Period.’ (With the collaboration of Stephen Pfann, Jr.) In Bio- and Material Cultures at Qumran: Papers from a COST Action G8 Working Group Meeting Held in Jerusalem, Israel on 22-23 May 2005, ed. Jan Gunneweg, Charles Greenblatt, and Annemie Adriaens, 251-264. Stuttgart: Fraunhofer IRB, (2006).
  • ‘A Table in the Wilderness: Two Pantries and Tables, Pure Food and Sacred Space at Qumran,’ Qumran, The Site of the Dead Sea Scrolls: Archaeological Interpretations and Debates. Proceedings of the Brown University Conference on the Archaeology of Qumran (Nov. 2002), edited by K. Galor, J-B Humbert and J. Zangenberg. E.J. Brill (2006)
  • “Historical Implications of the Early Second Century Dating of the 4Q249-250 Cryptic A Corpus.” In Things Revealed: Studies in Early Jewish and Christian Literature in Honor of Michael E. Stone, ed. Esther G. Chazon, David Satran, and Ruth A. Clements, 171-186. Journal for the Study of Judaism Supplement Series 89. Leiden: Brill, 2004.
  • The Excavations of Qumran and Ein Feshkha (Revised English Edition), NTOA Series Archeologica 1B, University Press Fribourg, Switzerland/Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen (2003). (Re-edition and annotated English translation of R. de Vaux’s excavation notes.)
  • ‘Kelei Dema‘: Tithe Jars, Scroll Jars and Cookie Jars.’ Proceedings of the Manchester Copper Scroll Conference, edited by George J. Brooke and Phillip R. Davies. JSP Supp. Seroes 40. Sheffield Academic Press (2002) 163-179.
  • ‘An Incense Altar from Qumran?’, with Torleif Elgvin, Dead Sea Discoveries 9,1 (2002) 20-33. ‘Concordance’, Hebrew and Aramaic Concordances for each of volumes XI, XIII, XVIII–XX, XXII, XXIII, XXV-XXX, XXXIV–XXXVI, XXXVIII of Discoveries in the Judaean Desert. (Oxford,1993–2001)
  • ‘”313c. 4QcryptA Calendrical Document B,” “317. 4QcryptA Lunisolar Calendar,” “324d. 4QcryptA Liturgical Calendara,” “324e. 4QcryptA Liturgical Calendarb,” “324f. 4QcryptA Liturgical Calendarc?” “324g. 4QcryptA Calendrical Document F?” “324h. 4QcryptA Calendrical Document G?” “324i. 4QcryptA Mishmarot J”.362. 4QcryptB Unidentified Text A,” “363. 4QcryptB Unidentified Text B,” “363a. 4QcryptC Unidentified Religious Text,” “363b. 4Qcrypt Miscellaneous Texts”.’ In Wadi Daliyeh II: The Samaria Papyri from Wadi Daliyeh and Qumran Cave 4.XXVIII: Miscellanea, Part 2, ed. Douglas M. Gropp et al., Pls. XLI-XLIII. DJD 28. Oxford: Clarendon, 2001.
  • The Character of the Early Essene Movement in the Light of the Manuscripts Written in Esoteric Scripts from Qumran, unpublished Ph.D. dissertation, Hebrew University, 2001.
  • ‘The Writings in Esoteric Script from Qumran.’ In The Dead Sea Scrolls: Fifty Years after Their Discovery. Proceedings of the Jerusalem Congress, July 20-25, 1997, ed. Lawrence H. Schiffman, Emanuel Tov, and James C. VanderKam, 177-190. Jerusalem: Israel Exploration Society in cooperation with the Shrine of the Book, Israel Museum, 2000.
  • The Synagogue in the First Century CE: Recommendations for the Reconstruction of an Academically Defensible Synagogue in Nazareth. University of the Holy Land Press (Jerusalem: 2000). Produced with the collaboration of V. Hillel.
  • ‘Cryptic Texts: 249a-z, 250a-j and 313-313b, Discoveries in the Judaean Desert XXXVI (2000) 515-701; pls. xxxv-xlix.
  • ‘Archaeological Surveys’, Encyclopedia of the Dead Sea Scrolls. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2000).
  • ‘Sons of Dawn’, Encyclopedia of the Dead Sea Scrolls. (New York: Oxford University Press, 2000) 891. ‘249. Midrash Sefer Mosheh, Discoveries in the Judaean Desert XXXV (1999) 1-24; pls. I-III.
  • ‘No Nu in Line 2 of 7Q5: A Final Disidentification of 7Q5 with Mark 6:52–53’, (in collaboration with R. Gundry). Journal of Biblical Literature 118 (1999) 698–707.
  • First Century Nazareth: A Preliminary Model for On-going Research. University of the Holy Land Press (Jerusalem: 1999). Produced with the collaboration of V. Hillel.
  • The First Century House: Its Structure as a Living Space. University of the Holy Land Press (Jerusalem: 1999). Produced with the collaboration of V. Hillel.
  • ‘The Essene Yearly Renewal Ceremony and the Baptism of Repentance’, Proceedings of the Provo Conference on the Dead Sea Scrolls, July 1996 (Leiden: Brill, 1998) 337-52.
  • ‘From John Trever to Digital Imaging: Photographing the Dead Sea Scrolls’, with G. Bearman and S. Spiro, in The Dead Sea Scrolls Jubilee Volume (Leiden: Brill, 1998) 472-84.
  • ‘La publication des fouilles de Qumrân et Aïn Feshkha (en édition anglaise)’, Le monde de la Bible 107 (1997) 9.
  • ‘298. 4QcryptA Words of the Maskil to All Sons of Dawn’, with Menahem Kister, Discoveries in the Judaean Desert XX (1997) 1-30.
  • ‘4Q249: Midrash Sefer Moshe’, in Legal Texts and Legal Issues: Proceedings of the Second Meeting of the International Organization for Qumran Studies, Cambridge, 1995 (STDJ XXIII; Leiden: Brill, 1997).
  • ‘Physical Descriptions’ in The Damascus Document (4Q266-273), J. Baumgarten, ed. (DJD XVIII; Oxford: Clarendon, 1996).
  • ‘4QDanield: A Preliminary Edition’, RevQ 17 (Milik Festrschrift; 1996) 37-71.
  • ‘4Q298: Word of the Maskil to All Sons of Dawn’, Jewish Quarterly Review (1994) 203-235.
  • ‘The Wine Press (and Mikveh) at Qumran’, RB 101-2 (1994) 212-14.
  • The Dead Sea Scrolls on Microfiche: A Comprehensive Facsimile Edition of the Texts from the Judean Desert (in collaboration with Emanuel Tov). Brill/IDC, 1993
  • The Dead Sea Scrolls on Microfiche: Companion Volume (in collaboration with Emanuel Tov). Brill/IDC, 1993, 2nd ed. 1995.
  • ‘Chronological List of the Negatives of the PAM, IAA, and Shrine of the Book’, chapter 3 in The Dead Sea Scrolls on Microfiche: A Comprehensive Facsimile Edition of the Texts from the Judean Desert (in collaboration with Emanuel Tov). Brill/IDC, 1993.
  • ‘History of the Judean Desert Discoveries’, Chapter 4 in The Dead Sea Scrolls on Microfiche: A Comprehensive Facsimile Edition of the Texts from the Judean Desert (in collaboration with Emanuel Tov). Brill/IDC, 1993.
  • ‘Sites in the Judean Desert Where Texts Have Been Found, Chapter 5 in The Dead Sea Scrolls on Microfiche: A Comprehensive Facsimile Edition of the Texts from the Judean Desert (in collaboration with Emanuel Tov). Brill/IDC, 1993.
  • ‘Khirbet Kerak Ware’, Anchor Bible Dictionary, Doubleday, 1992.
  • Gen. ed., Student Map Manual Marking Guide: Sections 10-13, the Hellenistic through New Testament
  • Periods, (Jerusalem: Center for the Study of Early Christianity), 1990.
  • ‘The Aramaic Text and Language of Daniel and Ezra in the Light of Some Unpublished Manuscripts from Qumran’, Textus 16 (1991) 127-37.
  • Contributor, The Illustrated Dictionary and Concordance to the Bible, Jerusalem Publishing House/MacMillan Press, 1986.
  • ‘A Concordance to Ugaritica VII’, in Ugaritic Studies 2, P.C. Craigie, ed. (originally published in Newsletter for Ugaritic Studies 22 [l980], pp. 8-l6).

Memberships:

  • Evangelical Theological Society, 2001 to present.
  • American Schools of Oriental Research, l977 to present.
  • Society of Biblical Literature, l974 to present.
  • Sierra Club, l970-l97l.
  • American Association for the Advancement of Science, l968-l972.