PG 68 FACE TO FACE WITH THE PAST: Reconstructing a Teenage Boy from Early Dilmun
Alexis T. Boutin, Gloria L. Nusse, Sabrina B. Sholts, and Benjamin W. Porter
Since 2008, the Dilmun Bioarchaeology Project has analyzed the human skeletal remains and artifacts that Peter B. Cornwall excavated from Bahrain in the
1940s, now held in the Hearst Museum of Anthropol ogy. One mode of interpretation and dissemination pursued by the DBP team is forensic facial recon struction. The subject of the first reconstruction is a twelve- to fifteen-year-old male who lived during the Early Dilmun period (ca. 2050-1800 B.C.E.). The resulting sculpture incorporates skeletal data about his identity and health as well as visual cues grounded in archaeological and sociohistorical contexts. It will be one of two reconstructions at the center of a travel ing museum exhibition beginning in 2013. The goal of the exhibition is to present members of past soci eties to the interested public in a tangible fashion that encourages empathy and an appreciation of our shared humanity.
PG 80 WHAT’S THE POOP ON ANCIENT TOILETS AND TOILET HABITS?
Today we view the ancient world through a highly sanitized lens. In reality, the Roman world was a filthy, malodorous, and unhealthy place. This article focuses on ancient toilet habits and toilet facilities, with spe cial consideration of the situation in Roman Palestine and rabbinic Judaism. The toilet habits at Qumran
where excrement was considered a source of impurity, defecating on the Sabbath was prohibited, and the sectarians practiced toilet privacy-are excep tional for antiquity. In contrast, rabbinic Judaism did not associate excrement and defecation with ritual impurity. The final sections of the article discuss the toilet in the temple of Jerusalem and its priests’ toilet habits, as well as Jesus’ position on the impurity of excrement.
88 TEL BET YERAH: Hub of the Early Bronze Age Levant
Raphael Greenberg, Sarit Paz, David Wengrow, and Mark Iserlis
During more than one thousand years at the dawn of written history, ancient Bet Yerah emerged and grew to be a focal point of Early Bronze Age interac tion. Established as a large village circa 3500 B.C.E., Bet Yerah was to become the prime city of the Jordan Valley, with massive fortifications, paved streets, and trade connections extending across the Levant and to Dynastic Egypt. One of the most ambitious buildings of the ancient Levant, the Circles Building or Granary, was founded near the summit of the mound. Partial abandonments in the early third millennium signify a local crisis that corresponded with the influx of immigrants from the distant north; they introduced the Khirbet Kerak culture to the site. After centu ries of shifting fortunes, Bet Yerah finally succumbed and was only sporadically inhabited in later times, as Hellenistic Philoteria and Umayyad al-Sinnabra. In our times it has become a heritage site associated with labor Zionism and the birth of the Kibbutz. This article tells the story of the Bronze Age city, based on extensive excavations since the 1930s, including new research and excavations since 2003.
PG. 108 THE SCULPTURES OF ALACAHOYUK: A Key to Religious Symbolism in Hittite Representational Art
This article presents a new interpretation of the monu mental sculptured friezes of the Sphinx Gate of Ala cahoyiik in northern Anatolia,
an important site of the Hittite Empire. Historical and cultural arguments sup port a date in the second half of the thirteenth century B.C.E.
for the Sphinx Gate. On the basis of a comparison of the scenes with other representations in Hittite art, it is argued that the cult and hunting
scenes reflect the concept of the main triad of the Hittite state pantheon: the sun-goddess, the storm-god, and the tutelary god of the countryside.
At the same time, the lower frieze on the West Tower depicts the royal couple officiating, pre sumably during an actual local festival. An identification
of Alacahoyiik with the sacred city Arinna is proposed. The Alacahoyiik sculptures may pertain to the Great Festival of Arinna, a festival attended by the
PG. 116 UNSEALING TELL EDFU, EGYPT: Who Was a Local Official and Who Was Not?
The two most frequently encountered sealing motifs discovered at Tell Edfu show decorative patterns that make the identification of their respective owners extremely difficult, in contrast to private name sealings dating to the late Middle Kingdom and early Second Intermediate Period (ca. 1770-1650 B.C.E.) that offer names and titles of officials operating on the local and national level. Decorative motifs per se do not reveal any details about their owners apart from the fact that they were part of the administrative system, probably belong ing to the lower tier of officials who remain relatively invisible in the majority of textual records. However, by analyzing the archaeological context and the back-types of such sealings, some information can be gained about their respective owners, and it is possible to consider questions as to whether they were local officials or simply sending sealed commodities to Edfufrom elsewhere.
PG. 126 REVIEWS
Glorious Mud! Ancient and Contemporary Earthen Design and Construction in North Africa, Western Europe, the Near East, and Southwest Asia
Aaron A. Burke