In the following exercise, you are now a biblical archaeologist and your task is to "excavate" Gezer. After you "dig" up your artifacts you must analyze them and write a 2-3 page history of the site on the basis of what you find. You should follow the following steps:
1. Go to the Gezer page and click on the trowel to find the various artifacts that tell the history of the site.
2. Compare these finds to similar ones at the other archeological digs in this exercise (Hazor, Megiddo, Lachish). You should look for similar finds from these other sites in order to reconstruct your history. If an artifact has been discovered at a comparable site and a date and function has been established, it could indicate a corresponding date and usage at your site. Note that the artifacts on the comparision sites are already dated and they will help you date your finds at Gezer.
3. Construct a chart that places the finds in chronological order. Below is an example of one from the actual dig at Lachish. Yours does not have to be as detailed. Use this as a good working example. Include your chart in your paper.
Chronological Table of Lachish
Periods and Dates
|EB (Early Bronze) IVB-C (2200-2000)||cemetery 2000; NW settlement|
|MB Middle Bronze I (2000-1800)|
|MB II-III (1800-1550)||ca 1550; destruction by fire|
|LB (Late Bronze) I (1550-1400)||Fosse Temple|
|LB (Late Bronze) IIA (1400-1300)||Fosse Temple II|
|LB (Late Bronze) IIB (1300-1200)||Fosse Temple III ca. 1200 destruction by fire|
|Iron Age IA-B (1200-1130)||ca 1150-1130 destruction by fire|
|Iron Age IB (1130-1000)||Gap in settlement|
|Iron Age IC (1000-930)||United Monarchy|
|Iron Age IIA-C (930-586)||ca. 925; destruction by fire; divided Monarchy
Assyrian siege in 701; destruction by fire
|Level II (588/586)||Babylonian siege - destruction by fire|
|Babylonian-Hellenistic (586-333)||Gap in settlement|
Adapted from Freedman, David Noel, ed.,The Anchor Bible Dictionary, (New York: Doubleday) 1997, 1992. CD Rom Version
4. From these data, write a 2-3 page (double spaced) history and reconstruction of Gezer. In your paper, discuss destruction layers, evidence of political dislocation, changes in the population, public and private buildings, water system. Look at the religious artifacts. What evidence of religion do you find at Gezer? How does all this information correlate to accounts in the Bible? Make sure you use comparative evidence from Megiddo, Hazor, and Lachish. You do not need to look elsewhere. This module is self-contained and you should have no problem completing the assignment using only the information found in the module.
Note: Archaeology involves interpretation and synthesis. Try to make intelligent use of the data at hand to come up with a reasonable set of conclusions, rather than searching for a "correct" answer.
ARE YOU READY TO BEGIN DIGGING??!!!
You have two excavation choices:
Go to the Gezer site map and begin excavation
Go to Israel and look at the other sites
Learn about Biblical Archaeology