Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Greek Vase

In a previous post I had a picture of the Greek vase as I first found it in the ground. Only the round part was sticking up. Here is how it looked when all cleaned up and ready for display.

The tag attached tells future archaeologist where and when it was excavated and also has my name on it as the one who excavated it. What joy!

Friday, February 27, 2009

My Friend Sveta

The young lady sorting pottery pieces is Svetlana [Sveta] Babkinka from Moscow in Russia. She was studying Hebrew History in 1999 and is now Doctor Babkinka and teaches Hebrew history in the Russian University in Moscow.

She is one of the life long friends I met on the Ashkelon dig and even though we have not seen each other since then we keep in touch. She is married with a son Timothy and a child on the way. 

The building in the background is the hotel where we lived during the dig.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

What Is This Doing Here?

At first I thought another skull but no it was pottery and an import at that it was Greek. Around 1500 BC the best pottery was imported from Greece and it was expensive so to leave it in the tomb most likely meant that it was a treasure of one of the dearly departed and left with that person.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


I met a lot of very interesting people on the Ashkelon dig and this man was one of them. Dennis was one of my three room mates and is a commercial archaeologist who usually digs in places where federal dollars are being used for construction. When artifacts are found during construction an archaeologist has to check the dig for the significance of the find. This sometimes means closing the construction during excavation. 

So Dennis was taking a buss mans holiday by digging in Ashkelon. Here is a man for whom his work is his play. In this picture he is examining a piece of chert. Dennis is an expert on flint of all kinds. I never saw a man drink so much vodka and remain sober - well alert and able to work.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Washing Pottery

As I noted in previous post we found a LOT of pottery in the Ashkelon dig and it was all dirty having been buried for thousands of years.

Every afternoon the students and volunteer would gather in the pottery yard to wash pottery, clean bones and other artifacts. As we collected lots of pottery it took a lot of people to carefully wash each piece. Here is what that process looked like. Each one had a small bucket of water, a finger nail brush and boxes of pottery that had to be kept with their tags. 

This was also a good time for informal conversations with other diggers so we usually grouped in circles like this to talk as we worked.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Some Pottery I Found

Here are a few of the pottery pieces that I excavated in the tomb including the two twin vases in the previous post. That dish in the center was found broken in three equal pieces and was very nicely glued back together.

Dorrie/Westy is sure doing a great job with my layout. Thanks Dorrie you are wonderful. Go over to my Pastor's Desk and see what she did with that layout. :-)

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Off to one side of the Canaanite tomb I was brushing dirt with a soft paint bruch when two identical shapes began to emerge. Twin vases about six inches high laying up against the wall of the tomb. What ever was in them when they were left there was gone and only sand filled them.

What a joy it was to find them and remove them from the tomb. Someone else had the pleasure of cleang the dirt off and out of them. Later I will show you the display of the cleaned pottery from this tomb.