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Qeiyafa inscription 2

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  • Brian Colless
    We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant. But another
    Message 1 of 20 , Jul 7, 2014
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      We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

      But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

      Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?

      I  need more inscriptions from early Israel, urgently (I am completing another circumnavigation of the sun soon, and my time might be running out).

      My hypothesis is that they were using the alphabet as a syllabary at that time (each letter had three forms or stances, for -a, -i, -u).


      This is continually being revised


      One prominent scholar in this field has given a quick response, and he cannot accept my proposal of a neo-syllabary" in Iron Age I;  "trained epigraphers" (blinkered academics?) see the Early Alphabet  as not standardized, and that accounts for all the variations.

      I thought that when a new paradigm is proposed, the experiment should be repeated, to see if the results can be replicated, or the hypothesis falsified; it is not sufficient to simply affirm the standard theory (which in this case is based on unquestioning observation). 

      The Izbet Sartah Ostracon and the Qeiyafa ostracon show  that a syllabary is a possibility. Qeiyafa line 2 has ShPT. at either end, but each letter has an entirely different stance in each case (apparently producing ShaPaT.a and ShiPiT.i). In the first instance the forms are the same as the alphabet on the Izbet Sartah text (line 5); in the second case we see the forms of the Phoenician alphabet. Surely this is significant. 

      I have spent a week going over it again, and have obtained even better results; but I need new material to test the paradigm further.

      The Jerusalem pithos inscription was a disappointment: it is brief, and  it has a missing sherd, so that too many letters are incomplete for it to be interpreted. Gershon Galil's reconstruction is ingenious and seductive, though. Various views on it are mentioned here.


      Brian Colless
      Massey University, New Zealand


    • Michael Banyai
      Brian, why don´t you take those documents from during the Sealand dynasty published by Dalley? They contain just the names of the signatories of the
      Message 2 of 20 , Jul 8, 2014
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        Brian,



        why don´t you take those documents from during the Sealand dynasty published
        by Dalley? They contain just the names of the signatories of the contracts,
        but they contain the names also in their Akkadian syllabary spelling, so you
        might compare your theory with the Babylonian vocalization.



        Good luck,



        Michael Banyai

        Oberursel



        Von: ANE-2@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ANE-2@yahoogroups.com]
        Gesendet: Dienstag, 8. Juli 2014 06:10
        An: ANE-2@yahoogroups.com
        Betreff: [ANE-2] Qeiyafa inscription 2





        We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim)
        overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.



        But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only
        one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.



        Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?



        I need more inscriptions from early Israel, urgently (I am completing
        another circumnavigation of the sun soon, and my time might be running out).



        My hypothesis is that they were using the alphabet as a syllabary at that
        time (each letter had three forms or stances, for -a, -i, -u).



        http://asorblog.org/?p=6692



        This is continually being revised



        http://cryptcracker.blogspot.co.nz/2014/04/early-hebrew-syllabary.html



        One prominent scholar in this field has given a quick response, and he
        cannot accept my proposal of a neo-syllabary" in Iron Age I; "trained
        epigraphers" (blinkered academics?) see the Early Alphabet as not
        standardized, and that accounts for all the variations.



        I thought that when a new paradigm is proposed, the experiment should be
        repeated, to see if the results can be replicated, or the hypothesis
        falsified; it is not sufficient to simply affirm the standard theory (which
        in this case is based on unquestioning observation).



        The Izbet Sartah Ostracon and the Qeiyafa ostracon show that a syllabary is
        a possibility. Qeiyafa line 2 has ShPT. at either end, but each letter has
        an entirely different stance in each case (apparently producing ShaPaT.a and
        ShiPiT.i). In the first instance the forms are the same as the alphabet on
        the Izbet Sartah text (line 5); in the second case we see the forms of the
        Phoenician alphabet. Surely this is significant.



        I have spent a week going over it again, and have obtained even better
        results; but I need new material to test the paradigm further.



        The Jerusalem pithos inscription was a disappointment: it is brief, and it
        has a missing sherd, so that too many letters are incomplete for it to be
        interpreted. Gershon Galil's reconstruction is ingenious and seductive,
        though. Various views on it are mentioned here.



        http://cryptcracker.blogspot.co.nz/2013/07/jerusalem-jar-inscription.html



        Brian Colless

        Massey University, New Zealand









        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Brian Colless
        I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we
        Message 3 of 20 , Jul 13, 2014
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          I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

          Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

          Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

          Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

          Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

          Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Philistine cities, including Gath).

          This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

          My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

          I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


          Brian Colless
          Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

           
          On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

           

          We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.


          But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

          Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?

        • drjewest
          Brian have I your permission to post this? i find it fascinating. Thanks Jim +++++++++++ Jim West Gadfly
          Message 4 of 20 , Jul 14, 2014
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            Brian have I your permission to post this?  i find it fascinating.

            Thanks

            Jim

            +++++++++++

            Jim West
            Gadfly
          • Brian Colless
            This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions. I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa
            Message 5 of 20 , Jul 23, 2014
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              This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

              I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

              But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.


              Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

              Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

              Sha`arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

              The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

              This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

              Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

              And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

              One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

              Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

              No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
              The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates");  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

              It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

              The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

              The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

              When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

              This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:


              Brian Colless
              Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

              On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

               

              I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

              Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

              Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

              Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

              Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

              Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

              This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

              My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

              I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


              Brian Colless
              Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

               
              On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

               

              We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.


              But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

              Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?



            • David Hall
              I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at
              Message 6 of 20 , Jul 23, 2014
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                I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gatedstructure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).   

                David Q. Hall
                Port Charlotte, FL




                On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                 
                This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

                I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

                But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.


                Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

                Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

                Sha`arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

                The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

                This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

                Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

                And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

                One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

                Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

                No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
                The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates");  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

                The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

                The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

                When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

                This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:


                Brian Colless
                Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                 

                I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

                Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

                Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

                Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

                Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

                Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

                This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

                My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

                I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


                Brian Colless
                Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                 
                On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                 
                We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

                But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

                Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?





              • Simeon Chavel
                The whole connection between Sha arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality:
                Message 7 of 20 , Jul 23, 2014
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                  The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 

                  Simeon Chavel
                  Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible
                  The University of Chicago Divinity School

                  On Jul 23, 2014, at 8:54 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                  I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gated structure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).    

                  David Q. Hall
                  Port Charlotte, FL




                  On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                   
                  This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

                  I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

                  But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.


                  Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

                  Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

                  Sha`arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

                  The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

                  This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

                  Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

                  And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

                  One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

                  Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

                  No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
                  The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates");  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                  It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

                  The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

                  The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

                  When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

                  This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:


                  Brian Colless
                  Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                  On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                   

                  I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

                  Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

                  Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

                  Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

                  Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

                  Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

                  This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

                  My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

                  I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


                  Brian Colless
                  Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                   
                  On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                   
                  We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

                  But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

                  Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?







                • Brian Colless
                  When is a gate not a gate? There can be a main entrance and a minor entrance (like a front door and a back door). But is there really any reason to doubt that
                  Message 8 of 20 , Jul 23, 2014
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                    When is a gate not a gate? 
                    There can be a main entrance and a minor entrance (like a front door and a back door). 
                    But is there really any reason to doubt that there was a west gate (--> Azekah) and a south gate (--> Socoh)?

                    http://www.biblewalks.com/sites/Shaaraim.html#WestGate

                    http://www.biblewalks.com/sites/Shaaraim.html#SouthGate

                    Brian Colless
                    Massey University, Aotearoa/New Zealand


                    On 24/07/2014, at 1:54 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                     

                    I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gatedstructure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).   

                    David Q. Hall
                    Port Charlotte, FL




                    On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                     
                    This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

                    I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

                    But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.


                    Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

                    Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

                    Sha`arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

                    The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

                    This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

                    Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

                    And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

                    One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

                    Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

                    No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
                    The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates");  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                    It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

                    The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

                    The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

                    When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

                    This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:


                    Brian Colless
                    Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                    On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                     

                    I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

                    Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

                    Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

                    Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

                    Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

                    Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

                    This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

                    My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

                    I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


                    Brian Colless
                    Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                     
                    On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                     
                    We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

                    But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

                    Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?







                  • Brian Colless
                    ... In my view, all human knowledge is iffy: it is tentative and temporary. (That is not an absolutist statement, I hope.) The (apparently) dual suffix on
                    Message 9 of 20 , Jul 23, 2014
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                      Simon Chavel avers:

                      The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 


                      In my view, all human knowledge is iffy: it is tentative and temporary. (That is not an absolutist statement, I hope.)

                      The (apparently) dual suffix on place-names has nothing to do with duality. 
                      That is absolutist, but it is obviously a rule that must allow exceptions.

                      Sha`arayim, with its possible meaning of "duality of gates", may have been constrained by this allegedly unbreakable rule, but the people who resided there would give one another a wink and a nudge, and say "We actually do have two gates in our town". ("Of course the dual is old-fashioned, but we still understand it", they might add.)

                      I have been trying to think of another toponym with an apparent dual ending, which really does have duality, and this popped up.

                      MIS.R is the Arabic name for Egypt; in Hebrew "the Two Lands" of upper (South) Egypt and lower (North) Egypt are covered by MIS.RAYIM.
                      The -ayim can not possibly be honorific, given the ancient Israelian image of Egypt as bad, bad, bad.

                      Any other deviant and wicked examples?

                      With sincere respect

                      Brian Colless
                      Massey University, Palmerston North, NZ


                      On 24/07/2014, at 2:35 AM, Simeon Chavel sbchavel@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                       

                      The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 


                      Simeon Chavel
                      Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible
                      The University of Chicago Divinity School

                      On Jul 23, 2014, at 8:54 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                      I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gated structure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).    

                      David Q. Hall
                      Port Charlotte, FL




                      On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                       
                      This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

                      I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

                      But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.


                      Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

                      Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

                      Sha`arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

                      The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

                      This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

                      Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

                      And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

                      One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

                      Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

                      No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
                      The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates");  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                      It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

                      The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

                      The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

                      When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

                      This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:


                      Brian Colless
                      Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                      On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                       

                      I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

                      Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

                      Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

                      Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

                      Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

                      Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

                      This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

                      My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

                      I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


                      Brian Colless
                      Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                       
                      On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                       
                      We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

                      But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

                      Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?









                    • Raz Kletter
                      Speaking from memory- Aram Naharayim , in biblical Hebrew, for the land between the two rivers. Possibly origininating from Egyptian Naharima=Mitanni? Best,
                      Message 10 of 20 , Jul 24, 2014
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                        Speaking from memory-
                        "Aram Naharayim", in biblical Hebrew, for the land between the two rivers.
                        Possibly origininating from Egyptian Naharima=Mitanni?
                        Best,
                        Raz Kletter
                        Un. of Helsinki



                        2014-07-24 8:14 GMT+03:00 Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com>:
                         


                        Simon Chavel avers:

                        The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 


                        In my view, all human knowledge is iffy: it is tentative and temporary. (That is not an absolutist statement, I hope.)

                        The (apparently) dual suffix on place-names has nothing to do with duality. 
                        That is absolutist, but it is obviously a rule that must allow exceptions.

                        Sha`arayim, with its possible meaning of "duality of gates", may have been constrained by this allegedly unbreakable rule, but the people who resided there would give one another a wink and a nudge, and say "We actually do have two gates in our town". ("Of course the dual is old-fashioned, but we still understand it", they might add.)

                        I have been trying to think of another toponym with an apparent dual ending, which really does have duality, and this popped up.

                        MIS.R is the Arabic name for Egypt; in Hebrew "the Two Lands" of upper (South) Egypt and lower (North) Egypt are covered by MIS.RAYIM.
                        The -ayim can not possibly be honorific, given the ancient Israelian image of Egypt as bad, bad, bad.

                        Any other deviant and wicked examples?

                        With sincere respect

                        Brian Colless
                        Massey University, Palmerston North, NZ


                        On 24/07/2014, at 2:35 AM, Simeon Chavel sbchavel@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                         

                        The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 


                        Simeon Chavel
                        Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible
                        The University of Chicago Divinity School

                        On Jul 23, 2014, at 8:54 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                        I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gated structure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).    

                        David Q. Hall
                        Port Charlotte, FL




                        On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                         
                        This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

                        I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

                        But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.


                        Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

                        Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

                        Sha`arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

                        The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

                        This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

                        Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

                        And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

                        One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

                        Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

                        No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
                        The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates");  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                        It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

                        The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

                        The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

                        When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

                        This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:


                        Brian Colless
                        Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                        On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                         

                        I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

                        Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

                        Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

                        Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

                        Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

                        Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

                        This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

                        My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

                        I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


                        Brian Colless
                        Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                         
                        On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                         
                        We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

                        But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

                        Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?










                      • michael.banyai@t-online.de
                        Brian, you missed the idea in the posting of David Hall. Since the only chamber foundation described for Qeiafa - he thinks - might be not that of a gate, this
                        Message 11 of 20 , Jul 24, 2014
                        • 0 Attachment

                          Brian,

                           

                          you missed the idea in the posting of David Hall. Since the only chamber foundation described for Qeiafa - he thinks - might be not that of a gate, this means Qeiafa had no gates at all. Since it was somewhat small site, people may have simply jumped over the wall.

                           

                          Kind regards,

                           

                          Michael Banyai

                          Oberursel

                           

                           

                          -----Original-Nachricht-----

                          Betreff: Re: [ANE-2] Qeiyafa inscription 2

                          Datum: Thu, 24 Jul 2014 16:19:29 +0200

                          Von: "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com>

                          An: ANE-2@yahoogroups.com

                           

                           

                           

                          When is a gate not a gate? 

                          There can be a main entrance and a minor entrance (like a front door and a back door). 
                          But is there really any reason to doubt that there was a west gate (--> Azekah) and a south gate (--> Socoh)?

                          http://www.biblewalks.com/sites/Shaaraim.html#WestGate
                           
                          http://www.biblewalks.com/sites/Shaaraim.html#SouthGate
                           
                          Brian Colless
                          Massey University, Aotearoa/New Zealand


                          On 24/07/2014, at 1:54 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                           
                           
                          I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gated structure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).   
                           
                          David Q. Hall
                          Port Charlotte, FL
                           
                           


                          On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                           
                          This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.
                           
                          I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.
                           
                          But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.
                           
                           
                          Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.
                           
                          Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.
                           
                          Sha`arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.
                           
                          The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.
                           
                          This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).
                           
                          Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.
                           
                          And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).
                           
                          One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.
                           
                           
                           
                          Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).
                           
                          No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
                          The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates");  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 
                           
                          It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).
                           
                          The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  
                           
                          The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.
                           
                          When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".
                           
                          This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:
                           
                           
                          Brian Colless
                          Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand
                          On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                           
                           
                          I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.
                           
                          Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 
                           
                          Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 
                           
                          Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?
                           
                          Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.
                           
                          Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).
                           
                          This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.
                           
                          My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 
                           
                          I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.
                           
                           
                          Brian Colless
                          Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand
                           
                           
                          On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                           
                          We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.
                           
                          But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.
                           
                          Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?

                           
                           


                           
                        • Peter van der Veen
                          Dear Raz, You are completely right! Indeed Aram Naharayim = Egyptian Naharima = Mitanni! Best wishes Peter van der Veen Joh. Gutenberg University Mainz ...
                          Message 12 of 20 , Jul 24, 2014
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                            Dear Raz, 

                            You are completely right! Indeed Aram Naharayim = Egyptian Naharima = Mitanni!
                            Best wishes
                            Peter van der Veen
                            Joh. Gutenberg University Mainz

                            Am 24.07.2014 um 15:58 schrieb Raz Kletter kletterr@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com>:


                            Speaking from memory-
                            "Aram Naharayim", in biblical Hebrew, for the land between the two rivers.
                            Possibly origininating from Egyptian Naharima=Mitanni? 
                            Best,
                            Raz Kletter
                            Un. of Helsinki



                            2014-07-24 8:14 GMT+03:00 Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com>:
                             


                            Simon Chavel avers:

                            The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 


                            In my view, all human knowledge is iffy: it is tentative and temporary. (That is not an absolutist statement, I hope.)

                            The (apparently) dual suffix on place-names has nothing to do with duality. 
                            That is absolutist, but it is obviously a rule that must allow exceptions.

                            Sha`arayim, with its possible meaning of "duality of gates", may have been constrained by this allegedly unbreakable rule, but the people who resided there would give one another a wink and a nudge, and say "We actually do have two gates in our town". ("Of course the dual is old-fashioned, but we still understand it", they might add.)

                            I have been trying to think of another toponym with an apparent dual ending, which really does have duality, and this popped up.

                            MIS.R is the Arabic name for Egypt; in Hebrew "the Two Lands" of upper (South) Egypt and lower (North) Egypt are covered by MIS.RAYIM.
                            The -ayim can not possibly be honorific, given the ancient Israelian image of Egypt as bad, bad, bad.

                            Any other deviant and wicked examples?

                            With sincere respect

                            Brian Colless
                            Massey University, Palmerston North, NZ


                            On 24/07/2014, at 2:35 AM, Simeon Chavel sbchavel@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                             

                            The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 


                            Simeon Chavel
                            Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible
                            The University of Chicago Divinity School

                            On Jul 23, 2014, at 8:54 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                            I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gated structure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).    

                            David Q. Hall
                            Port Charlotte, FL




                            On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                             
                            This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

                            I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

                            But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.


                            Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

                            Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

                            Sha`arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

                            The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

                            This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

                            Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

                            And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

                            One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

                            Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

                            No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
                            The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates");  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                            It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

                            The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

                            The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

                            When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

                            This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:


                            Brian Colless
                            Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                            On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                             

                            I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

                            Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

                            Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

                            Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

                            Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

                            Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

                            This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

                            My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

                            I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


                            Brian Colless
                            Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                             
                            On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                             
                            We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

                            But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

                            Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?













                          • David Hall
                            There may have been a pedestrian gate and a gate large enough for oxcarts.  There may have been a gate comprised of two sections, such as a double swing
                            Message 13 of 20 , Jul 24, 2014
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                              There may have been a pedestrian gate and a gate large enough for oxcarts.  There may have been a gate comprised of two sections, such as a double swing gate.  There may have been an outer gate and an inner gate flanked by towers at the same entrance road.  There may have been two gates each at opposite ends of a small settlement as proposed by the excavation team at Qeiyafa.  The early settlement layers suffered degradation as later generations salvaged stones from earlier abandoned structures for use in newer structures.  The cost of a gate was high as it had to be defended and supported by flanking towers.  Wooden gates were vulnerable to enemy fire as they were flammable.  These were also vulnerable to battering rams.  The cost of high walls and towers was also expensive.  Towers were used by archers and stone throwers to gain an elevation advantage and were of strategic value in efforts to repel enemies trying to undermine the walls or charge the gate.  The valley below Qeiyafa is rich in agricultural production to this day, thus the area was rich enough to justify a defense system.  The Elah Valley would have been coveted by rival factions.   

                              David Q Hall  
                              Port Charlotte, FL


                              On Thursday, July 24, 2014 10:19 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                               
                              When is a gate not a gate? 
                              There can be a main entrance and a minor entrance (like a front door and a back door). 
                              But is there really any reason to doubt that there was a west gate (--> Azekah) and a south gate (--> Socoh)?

                              http://www.biblewalks.com/sites/Shaaraim.html#WestGate

                              http://www.biblewalks.com/sites/Shaaraim.html#SouthGate

                              Brian Colless
                              Massey University, Aotearoa/New Zealand


                              On 24/07/2014, at 1:54 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                               

                              I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gatedstructure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).   

                              David Q. Hall
                              Port Charlotte, FL




                              On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                               
                              This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

                              I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

                              But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.


                              Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

                              Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

                              Sha`arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

                              The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

                              This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

                              Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

                              And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

                              One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

                              Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

                              No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
                              The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates");  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                              It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

                              The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

                              The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

                              When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

                              This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:


                              Brian Colless
                              Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                              On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                               

                              I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

                              Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

                              Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

                              Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

                              Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

                              Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

                              This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

                              My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

                              I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


                              Brian Colless
                              Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                               
                              On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                               
                              We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

                              But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

                              Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?









                            • Simeon Chavel
                              Taken together, the range of (conflicting) biblical associations to the GN and the extra-biblical references to naharina and nahrima make both the connection
                              Message 14 of 20 , Jul 24, 2014
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                                Taken together, the range of (conflicting) biblical associations to the GN and the extra-biblical references to naharina and nahrima make both the connection to a spot between the Tigris and the Euphrates and the origin of the dual suffix debatable. If anything, Naharayim would make more sense as "of/on the river" (like so many names in Europe) than "of/between the two rivers," especially if among other things it serves to distinguish it from other cities named Aram, e.g. Aram Zobah.

                                Simeon Chavel
                                Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible
                                The University of Chicago Divinity School

                                On Jul 24, 2014, at 8:58 AM, Raz Kletter kletterr@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                Speaking from memory-
                                "Aram Naharayim", in biblical Hebrew, for the land between the two rivers.
                                Possibly origininating from Egyptian Naharima=Mitanni? 
                                Best,
                                Raz Kletter
                                Un. of Helsinki



                                2014-07-24 8:14 GMT+03:00 Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com>:
                                 


                                Simon Chavel avers:

                                The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 


                                In my view, all human knowledge is iffy: it is tentative and temporary. (That is not an absolutist statement, I hope.)

                                The (apparently) dual suffix on place-names has nothing to do with duality. 
                                That is absolutist, but it is obviously a rule that must allow exceptions.

                                Sha`arayim, with its possible meaning of "duality of gates", may have been constrained by this allegedly unbreakable rule, but the people who resided there would give one another a wink and a nudge, and say "We actually do have two gates in our town". ("Of course the dual is old-fashioned, but we still understand it", they might add.)

                                I have been trying to think of another toponym with an apparent dual ending, which really does have duality, and this popped up.

                                MIS.R is the Arabic name for Egypt; in Hebrew "the Two Lands" of upper (South) Egypt and lower (North) Egypt are covered by MIS.RAYIM.
                                The -ayim can not possibly be honorific, given the ancient Israelian image of Egypt as bad, bad, bad.

                                Any other deviant and wicked examples?

                                With sincere respect

                                Brian Colless
                                Massey University, Palmerston North, NZ


                                On 24/07/2014, at 2:35 AM, Simeon Chavel sbchavel@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                 

                                The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 


                                Simeon Chavel
                                Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible
                                The University of Chicago Divinity School

                                On Jul 23, 2014, at 8:54 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gated structure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).    

                                David Q. Hall
                                Port Charlotte, FL




                                On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                 
                                This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

                                I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

                                But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.


                                Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

                                Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

                                Sha`arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

                                The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

                                This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

                                Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

                                And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

                                One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

                                Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

                                No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
                                The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates");  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                                It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

                                The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

                                The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

                                When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

                                This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:


                                Brian Colless
                                Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                                On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                 

                                I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

                                Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

                                Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

                                Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

                                Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

                                Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

                                This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

                                My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

                                I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


                                Brian Colless
                                Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                                 
                                On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                 
                                We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

                                But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

                                Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?













                              • David Hall
                                This is not true.  There was a multi-chambered structure facing the valley that was interpreted as the first gate and a structure with one chamber at the
                                Message 15 of 20 , Jul 24, 2014
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                                  This is not true.  There was a multi-chambered structure facing the valley that was interpreted as the first gate and a structure with one chamber at the opposite end of the walled town interpreted as the other gate.  The single chambered structure was described as part of what once was a second gate by excavators as they sought to prove this was the town of two gates.  You may not have seen a site plan of the place to guess I described the town had no gate.  

                                  There may have been an inner and outer gate in the multi-chambered/multi-towered feature as interpreted from the orientation of the foundation stones.  To make it a two gated city the other way requires imagining foundations that were not found to make a single tower foundation to be part of a gate complex.

                                  David Q. Hall
                                  Port Charlotte, FL


                                  On Thursday, July 24, 2014 11:09 AM, "Peter van der Veen van_der_Veen@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                   
                                  Dear Raz, 

                                  You are completely right! Indeed Aram Naharayim = Egyptian Naharima = Mitanni!
                                  Best wishes
                                  Peter van der Veen
                                  Joh. Gutenberg University Mainz

                                  Am 24.07.2014 um 15:58 schrieb Raz Kletter kletterr@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com>:


                                  Speaking from memory-
                                  "Aram Naharayim", in biblical Hebrew, for the land between the two rivers.
                                  Possibly origininating from Egyptian Naharima=Mitanni? 
                                  Best,
                                  Raz Kletter
                                  Un. of Helsinki



                                  2014-07-24 8:14 GMT+03:00 Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com>:
                                   


                                  Simon Chavel avers:
                                  The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 

                                  In my view, all human knowledge is iffy: it is tentative and temporary. (That is not an absolutist statement, I hope.)

                                  The (apparently) dual suffix on place-names has nothing to do with duality. 
                                  That is absolutist, but it is obviously a rule that must allow exceptions.

                                  Sha`arayim, with its possible meaning of "duality of gates", may have been constrained by this allegedly unbreakable rule, but the people who resided there would give one another a wink and a nudge, and say "We actually do have two gates in our town". ("Of course the dual is old-fashioned, but we still understand it", they might add.)

                                  I have been trying to think of another toponym with an apparent dual ending, which really does have duality, and this popped up.

                                  MIS.R is the Arabic name for Egypt; in Hebrew "the Two Lands" of upper (South) Egypt and lower (North) Egypt are covered by MIS.RAYIM.
                                  The -ayim can not possibly be honorific, given the ancient Israelian image of Egypt as bad, bad, bad.

                                  Any other deviant and wicked examples?

                                  With sincere respect

                                  Brian Colless
                                  Massey University, Palmerston North, NZ


                                  On 24/07/2014, at 2:35 AM, Simeon Chavel sbchavel@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                   
                                  The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 

                                  Simeon Chavel
                                  Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible
                                  The University of Chicago Divinity School

                                  On Jul 23, 2014, at 8:54 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                  I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gated structure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).    

                                  David Q. Hall
                                  Port Charlotte, FL




                                  On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                   
                                  This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

                                  I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

                                  But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.


                                  Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

                                  Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

                                  Sha`arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

                                  The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

                                  This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

                                  Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

                                  And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

                                  One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

                                  Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

                                  No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
                                  The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates");  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                                  It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

                                  The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

                                  The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

                                  When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

                                  This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:


                                  Brian Colless
                                  Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                                  On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                   

                                  I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

                                  Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

                                  Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

                                  Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

                                  Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

                                  Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

                                  This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

                                  My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

                                  I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


                                  Brian Colless
                                  Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                                   
                                  On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                   
                                  We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

                                  But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

                                  Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?















                                • Michael Banyai
                                  David, you don´t have to take everything so serious. It was just friendly laughter encouraged by your somewhat ambivalent formulation. The fact that it
                                  Message 16 of 20 , Jul 24, 2014
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                                    David, you don´t have to take everything so serious. It was just friendly laughter encouraged by your somewhat ambivalent formulation.

                                     

                                    The fact that it doesn´t  look like a monumental gate should also have been the first thought of the archaeologists in Qeiafa. It is too obvious. I suppose they have seen several multi-chambered gate structures before.

                                     

                                    Doesn´t necessarily mean, you were wrong with your assessment. I suppose however, that the archaeologists in the field sometimes see more than we could do later just  in the publication and they weighed about this. If they thought it was despite all a gate, you should best address them directly and ask, why.

                                     

                                    Regards,

                                     

                                    Michael Banyai

                                    Oberursel

                                    Von: ANE-2@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ANE-2@yahoogroups.com]
                                    Gesendet: Donnerstag, 24. Juli 2014 18:45
                                    An: ANE-2@yahoogroups.com
                                    Betreff: Re: [ANE-2] Qeiyafa inscription 2

                                     

                                     

                                    This is not true.  There was a multi-chambered structure facing the valley that was interpreted as the first gate and a structure with one chamber at the opposite end of the walled town interpreted as the other gate.  The single chambered structure was described as part of what once was a second gate by excavators as they sought to prove this was the town of two gates.  You may not have seen a site plan of the place to guess I described the town had no gate.  

                                     

                                    There may have been an inner and outer gate in the multi-chambered/multi-towered feature as interpreted from the orientation of the foundation stones.  To make it a two gated city the other way requires imagining foundations that were not found to make a single tower foundation to be part of a gate complex.

                                     

                                    David Q. Hall

                                    Port Charlotte, FL

                                     

                                    On Thursday, July 24, 2014 11:09 AM, "Peter van der Veen van_der_Veen@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                                     

                                     

                                    Dear Raz, 

                                     

                                    You are completely right! Indeed Aram Naharayim = Egyptian Naharima = Mitanni!

                                    Best wishes

                                    Peter van der Veen

                                    Joh. Gutenberg University Mainz

                                     

                                    Am 24.07.2014 um 15:58 schrieb Raz Kletter kletterr@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com>:

                                     

                                     

                                    Speaking from memory-
                                    "Aram Naharayim", in biblical Hebrew, for the land between the two rivers.

                                    Possibly origininating from Egyptian Naharima=Mitanni? 

                                    Best,

                                    Raz Kletter

                                    Un. of Helsinki

                                     

                                     

                                    2014-07-24 8:14 GMT+03:00 Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com>:

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                    Simon Chavel avers:

                                    The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 

                                     

                                    In my view, all human knowledge is iffy: it is tentative and temporary. (That is not an absolutist statement, I hope.)

                                     

                                    The (apparently) dual suffix on place-names has nothing to do with duality. 

                                    That is absolutist, but it is obviously a rule that must allow exceptions.

                                     

                                    Sha`arayim, with its possible meaning of "duality of gates", may have been constrained by this allegedly unbreakable rule, but the people who resided there would give one another a wink and a nudge, and say "We actually do have two gates in our town". ("Of course the dual is old-fashioned, but we still understand it", they might add.)

                                     

                                    I have been trying to think of another toponym with an apparent dual ending, which really does have duality, and this popped up.

                                     

                                    MIS.R is the Arabic name for Egypt; in Hebrew "the Two Lands" of upper (South) Egypt and lower (North) Egypt are covered by MIS.RAYIM.

                                    The -ayim can not possibly be honorific, given the ancient Israelian image of Egypt as bad, bad, bad.

                                     

                                    Any other deviant and wicked examples?

                                     

                                    With sincere respect

                                     

                                    Brian Colless

                                    Massey University, Palmerston North, NZ

                                     

                                     

                                    On 24/07/2014, at 2:35 AM, Simeon Chavel sbchavel@... [ANE-2] wrote:



                                     

                                    The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 

                                     

                                    Simeon Chavel

                                    Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible

                                    The University of Chicago Divinity School

                                     

                                    On Jul 23, 2014, at 8:54 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:



                                     

                                    I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gated structure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).    

                                     

                                    David Q. Hall
                                    Port Charlotte, FL

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                    On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

                                     

                                     

                                    This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

                                     

                                    I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

                                     

                                    But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.

                                     

                                     

                                    Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

                                     

                                    Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

                                     

                                    Sha`arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

                                     

                                    The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

                                     

                                    This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

                                     

                                    Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

                                     

                                    And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

                                     

                                    One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

                                     

                                    Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

                                     

                                    No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).

                                    The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates");  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                                     

                                    It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

                                     

                                    The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

                                     

                                    The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

                                     

                                    When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

                                     

                                    This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:

                                     

                                     

                                    Brian Colless

                                    Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                                     

                                    On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:



                                     

                                     

                                    I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

                                     

                                    Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

                                     

                                    Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

                                     

                                    Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

                                     

                                    Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

                                     

                                    Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

                                     

                                    This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

                                     

                                    My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

                                     

                                    I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.

                                     

                                     

                                    Brian Colless

                                    Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                                     

                                     

                                    On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:



                                     

                                    We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

                                     

                                    But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

                                     

                                    Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                     

                                  • Brian Colless
                                    As I said: human knowledge is iffy (what if this? what if that? what if both? what if neither?) Apparently, we can systematically reduce the number of gates on
                                    Message 17 of 20 , Jul 24, 2014
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                                      As I said: human knowledge is iffy (what if this? what if that? what if both? what if neither?)

                                      Apparently, we can systematically reduce the number of gates on the Qeiyafa site from two to one and even to none.

                                      Also, there are possibly two references (not merely one) to a Sha`arayim in the text (as it has been "received", imperfectly), which can be understood, by judicious emendation, as both referring to the gates of Eqron.

                                      Let me bring this up again:
                                      The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates", both possibly of Eqron);  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                                      The case I have made obviously involves choices which constitute a not entirely convincing whole, because of the various variables.

                                      Nevertheless, whatever the etymology of the name Sha`arayim (and its possible connection with gates), and whatever number of gates were in the circular wall of Qeiyafa, it is still reasonable to accept that the writer was using the name Sha`arayim to refer to what we now know as Khirbet Qeiyafa; certainly it is not Gath or Eqron, and not Azekah or Socoh, nor the mysterious Ephes-dammim ("end of bloodshed"?) which was the place where the Philistines camped  (17:1); and although it may have been described as "the circular place" (HM`GL, 17.20) its name would have been Sha`arayim, which is elsewhere placed in the "lowland" of Judah, with Azekah and Socoh (Joshua 16.33-36).

                                      But when the dust from the fallen gates has settled, we will have to consider the evidence from the Qeiyafa ostracon. So many different interpretations were published in the race to be first, without sufficient examination and reflection. (Not true of the second inscription, which started this thread!)

                                      The stage I have reached in my constant scrutiny of the document has led me to think that the account of the Battle of the Elah Valley (1 Samuel 17) is not fictional. There will be a Goliath-ian reaction to my reading of the five lines, but Goliath always falls in the end.


                                      Yours sine cera (without wax, this product is 100% pure, made in New Zealand)

                                      Brian Colless

                                      Massey University, Aotearoa/NZ

                                      There are two ways of fooling yourself: one is believing what is not true, the other is not believing what is true (after Kierkegaard)
                                      There are two ways of living your life: one is as though nothing is a miracle; the other is as if everything is a miracle (after Einstein)


                                      On 25/07/2014, at 2:56 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                       

                                      There may have been a pedestrian gate and a gate large enough for oxcarts.  There may have been a gate comprised of two sections, such as a double swing gate.  There may have been an outer gate and an inner gate flanked by towers at the same entrance road.  There may have been two gates each at opposite ends of a small settlement as proposed by the excavation team at Qeiyafa.  The early settlement layers suffered degradation as later generations salvaged stones from earlier abandoned structures for use in newer structures.  The cost of a gate was high as it had to be defended and supported by flanking towers.  Wooden gates were vulnerable to enemy fire as they were flammable.  These were also vulnerable to battering rams.  The cost of high walls and towers was also expensive.  Towers were used by archers and stone throwers to gain an elevation advantage and were of strategic value in efforts to repel enemies trying to undermine the walls or charge the gate.  The valley below Qeiyafa is rich in agricultural production to this day, thus the area was rich enough to justify a defense system.  The Elah Valley would have been coveted by rival factions.   

                                      David Q Hall  
                                      Port Charlotte, FL


                                      On Thursday, July 24, 2014 10:19 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                       
                                      When is a gate not a gate? 
                                      There can be a main entrance and a minor entrance (like a front door and a back door). 
                                      But is there really any reason to doubt that there was a west gate (--> Azekah) and a south gate (--> Socoh)?

                                      http://www.biblewalks.com/sites/Shaaraim.html#WestGate


                                      Brian Colless
                                      Massey University, Aotearoa/New Zealand


                                      On 24/07/2014, at 1:54 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                       

                                      I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gatedstructure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).   

                                      David Q. Hall
                                      Port Charlotte, FL




                                      On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                       
                                      This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

                                      I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

                                      But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.


                                      Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

                                      Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

                                      Sha `arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

                                      The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

                                      This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

                                      Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

                                      And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

                                      One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

                                      Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

                                      No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
                                      The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates", both possibly of Eqron);  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                                      It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

                                      The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

                                      The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

                                      When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

                                      This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:


                                      Brian Colless
                                      Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                                      On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                       

                                      I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

                                      Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

                                      Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

                                      Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

                                      Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

                                      Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

                                      This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

                                      My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

                                      I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


                                      Brian Colless
                                      Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                                       
                                      On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                       
                                      We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

                                      But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

                                      Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?











                                    • David Hall
                                      Gate structures with two or three sets of towers have been noted at other sites.  One pair of towers, one to the left of the entrance the other to the right
                                      Message 18 of 20 , Jul 25, 2014
                                      • 0 Attachment
                                        Gate structures with two or three sets of towers have been noted at other sites.  One pair of towers, one to the left of the entrance the other to the right could support a wooden gate.  Double or triple gate structures have been seen at other sites.  Information about Iron Age city gates in Israel is available through a search engine. 

                                        I suggested there may have been a wooden gate or gates protecting the city that could be closed in times of danger.  As wood is perishable, the gates no longer exist.  Foundations of the structures that were used to support and defend the gates remained.  It would be no use having a city with thick stone walls and towers if you could not close and lock the city gate(s).    

                                        David Q. Hall
                                        Port Charlotte, FL


                                        On Friday, July 25, 2014 6:46 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                         
                                        As I said: human knowledge is iffy (what if this? what if that? what if both? what if neither?)

                                        Apparently, we can systematically reduce the number of gates on the Qeiyafa site from two to one and even to none.

                                        Also, there are possibly two references (not merely one) to a Sha`arayim in the text (as it has been "received", imperfectly), which can be understood, by judicious emendation, as both referring to the gates of Eqron.

                                        Let me bring this up again:
                                        The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates", both possibly of Eqron);  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                                        The case I have made obviously involves choices which constitute a not entirely convincing whole, because of the various variables.

                                        Nevertheless, whatever the etymology of the name Sha`arayim (and its possible connection with gates), and whatever number of gates were in the circular wall of Qeiyafa, it is still reasonable to accept that the writer was using the name Sha`arayim to refer to what we now know as Khirbet Qeiyafa; certainly it is not Gath or Eqron, and not Azekah or Socoh, nor the mysterious Ephes-dammim ("end of bloodshed"?) which was the place where the Philistines camped  (17:1); and although it may have been described as "the circular place" (HM`GL, 17.20) its name would have been Sha`arayim, which is elsewhere placed in the "lowland" of Judah, with Azekah and Socoh (Joshua 16.33-36).

                                        But when the dust from the fallen gates has settled, we will have to consider the evidence from the Qeiyafa ostracon. So many different interpretations were published in the race to be first, without sufficient examination and reflection. (Not true of the second inscription, which started this thread!)

                                        The stage I have reached in my constant scrutiny of the document has led me to think that the account of the Battle of the Elah Valley (1 Samuel 17) is not fictional. There will be a Goliath-ian reaction to my reading of the five lines, but Goliath always falls in the end.


                                        Yours sine cera (without wax, this product is 100% pure, made in New Zealand)

                                        Brian Colless

                                        Massey University, Aotearoa/NZ

                                        There are two ways of fooling yourself: one is believing what is not true, the other is not believing what is true (after Kierkegaard)
                                        There are two ways of living your life: one is as though nothing is a miracle; the other is as if everything is a miracle (after Einstein)


                                        On 25/07/2014, at 2:56 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                         

                                        There may have been a pedestrian gate and a gate large enough for oxcarts.  There may have been a gate comprised of two sections, such as a double swing gate.  There may have been an outer gate and an inner gate flanked by towers at the same entrance road.  There may have been two gates each at opposite ends of a small settlement as proposed by the excavation team at Qeiyafa.  The early settlement layers suffered degradation as later generations salvaged stones from earlier abandoned structures for use in newer structures.  The cost of a gate was high as it had to be defended and supported by flanking towers.  Wooden gates were vulnerable to enemy fire as they were flammable.  These were also vulnerable to battering rams.  The cost of high walls and towers was also expensive.  Towers were used by archers and stone throwers to gain an elevation advantage and were of strategic value in efforts to repel enemies trying to undermine the walls or charge the gate.  The valley below Qeiyafa is rich in agricultural production to this day, thus the area was rich enough to justify a defense system.  The Elah Valley would have been coveted by rival factions.   

                                        David Q Hall  
                                        Port Charlotte, FL


                                        On Thursday, July 24, 2014 10:19 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                         
                                        When is a gate not a gate? 
                                        There can be a main entrance and a minor entrance (like a front door and a back door). 
                                        But is there really any reason to doubt that there was a west gate (--> Azekah) and a south gate (--> Socoh)?

                                        http://www.biblewalks.com/sites/Shaaraim.html#WestGate


                                        Brian Colless
                                        Massey University, Aotearoa/New Zealand


                                        On 24/07/2014, at 1:54 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                         

                                        I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gatedstructure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).   

                                        David Q. Hall
                                        Port Charlotte, FL




                                        On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                         
                                        This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

                                        I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

                                        But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.


                                        Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

                                        Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

                                        Sha `arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

                                        The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

                                        This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

                                        Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

                                        And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

                                        One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

                                        Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

                                        No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
                                        The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates", both possibly of Eqron);  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                                        It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

                                        The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

                                        The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

                                        When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

                                        This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:


                                        Brian Colless
                                        Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                                        On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                         

                                        I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

                                        Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

                                        Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

                                        Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

                                        Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

                                        Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

                                        This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

                                        My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

                                        I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


                                        Brian Colless
                                        Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                                         
                                        On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                         
                                        We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

                                        But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

                                        Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?













                                      • Simeon Chavel
                                        Fair enough! But do you think biblical authors made up the name Mizrayim? If not, do you think that from time immemorial, inhabitants of Canaan considered
                                        Message 19 of 20 , Jul 25, 2014
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                                          Fair enough! But do you think biblical authors made up the name Mizrayim? If not, do you think that from time immemorial, inhabitants of Canaan considered Mizrayim bad? Once again, a secondary name-derivation suggests itself: the land of great trouble, i.e., for "us." Enough biblical texts show the attractiveness of Egypt for its riches, culture, and power (The Great Satan).

                                          Two suggestions: (1) To distinguish between names of local sites and Hebrew versions of names of distant sites; (2) to consider (where possible) deliberate word-derivation and wordplay by biblical authors, who took advantage of the dual sense of -ayim. 

                                          Simeon Chavel
                                          Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible
                                          The University of Chicago Divinity School

                                          On Jul 24, 2014, at 12:14 AM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                          Simon Chavel avers:

                                          The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 


                                          In my view, all human knowledge is iffy: it is tentative and temporary. (That is not an absolutist statement, I hope.)

                                          The (apparently) dual suffix on place-names has nothing to do with duality. 
                                          That is absolutist, but it is obviously a rule that must allow exceptions.

                                          Sha`arayim, with its possible meaning of "duality of gates", may have been constrained by this allegedly unbreakable rule, but the people who resided there would give one another a wink and a nudge, and say "We actually do have two gates in our town". ("Of course the dual is old-fashioned, but we still understand it", they might add.)

                                          I have been trying to think of another toponym with an apparent dual ending, which really does have duality, and this popped up.

                                          MIS.R is the Arabic name for Egypt; in Hebrew "the Two Lands" of upper (South) Egypt and lower (North) Egypt are covered by MIS.RAYIM.
                                          The -ayim can not possibly be honorific, given the ancient Israelian image of Egypt as bad, bad, bad.

                                          Any other deviant and wicked examples?

                                          With sincere respect

                                          Brian Colless
                                          Massey University, Palmerston North, NZ


                                          On 24/07/2014, at 2:35 AM, Simeon Chavel sbchavel@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                           

                                          The whole connection between Sha'arayim and two anything must be given up. Aaron Demsky showed the dual suffix on names to have nothing to do with duality: "Hebrew Names in the Dual Form and the Toponym Yerushalayim," in: These Are The Names: Studies in Jewish Onomastics, vol. 3 (Bar-Ilan U. Press, 2002), pp. 11–20. Even biblical authors knew this to be the case: note the name-derivation for Mahanayim, which has to do with quality not quantity (Gen 32:2-3). 


                                          Simeon Chavel
                                          Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible
                                          The University of Chicago Divinity School

                                          On Jul 23, 2014, at 8:54 AM, David Hall dqhall59@... [ANE-2] <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                          I looked at the site plan of Qeiyafa above the Elah Valley of Israel and was not convinced there were two gates.  I thought the single chamber foundation at Qeiyafa described as a gate might be a tower.  For it to be a gate there should have been four or six tower chamber foundations making up the towers flanking the gate and providing structure for the posterns of a double or triple gated structure.  The site is small and in my mind neither proves nor disproves the Bible.  Tel Azekah mentioned in an Assyrian era Hebrew tablet found at Lachish (Lachish letters tablet) is thought to be a steep hill close to Qeiyafa across the road from it.  Tel Azekah may have been used as a signal post linking Jerusalem with the heavily fortified hill at Lachish.  Lachish fell to the Assyrian army of Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah as recorded in the Bible and the Assyrian archives unearthed by Austen Henry Layard (1817-1894) and Hormuzd Rassam (1826-1910) at Nineveh (near Mosul, Iraq).    

                                          David Q. Hall
                                          Port Charlotte, FL




                                          On Wednesday, July 23, 2014 7:51 AM, "Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2]" <ANE-2@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                           
                                          This is my third submission on the two Qeiyafa inscriptions.

                                          I am still suspicious and concerned about the time it is taking to unveil the second Qeiyafa inscription; as with the Dead Sea Scrolls, there will soon be conspiracy theories about reluctance to reveal it because it contains information that will be distasteful to some interested parties. On the other hand, if it had been given to me (and likewise with one of the scrolls) it would certainly be a long time before it appeared, because I would want to get my interpretation right before setting it in concrete {that is, in print on paper}. When I have seen the other inscription, and have ascertained whether it can be shown to be syllabic rather than simply consonantal, I might be in a position to publish my case confidently.

                                          But now i have been challenged to justify my acceptance of the Sha`arayim identification of Khirbet Qeiyafa.


                                          Khirbet Qeiyafa has tentatively but plausibly been identified (initially by Anson Rainey) as the Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 and 1 Samuel 17.52.

                                          Arguments for and against this equation are conveniently presented by Yigal Levin, in "The Identification of  Khirbet Qeiyafa: A New Suggestion", BASOR 367 (2012)  73-86. He raises the possibility that it was designated "the round place" [HM`GL], as in 1 Sam 17.20. David was told by his father, in Bethlehem, to take provisions to his brothers at "the camp" (HMH.NH, 1 Sam 17.17); David went to "the round encampment" (HM`GL "circular place", 17.20), and Yigal Levin (p. 82) suggests that this is a reference to Qeiyafa and the circular fortification. (Were the tents inside the enclosure, or below it?)  However, this would not be the name of the place. If we are allowed to use this narrative as a source, the name that pops up (in 17.52) is Sha`arayim.

                                          Sha`arayim in Hebrew undoubtedly means "two gates" (the noun has the dual ending, -ayim, not plural -im), and this feature certainly applies to Khirbet Qeiyafa, with its west and south gates. Other Hebrew names in -ayim, such as Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), do not seem to have  "dual" meaning, but Sha`arayim could be a notable exception.

                                          The Sha`arayim of Joshua 15.36 is the only instance of the name that could be connected with the Sha`arayim of 1 Sam 17.52; it would have been situated in the vicinity of Socoh and Azekah, according to Jos15.35; and the Philistine camp in the Valley of Elah lay between Socoh and Azekah (1 Sam 17.1); Kh. Qeiyafa is likewise between these towns, but it is on the northern side of the Elah stream, whereas (from east to west) Socoh, Azekah, and Gath are on the southern side.

                                          This particular Sha`arayim is not mentioned in any other place in the Bible, and this might be explained by the fact that Qeiyafa had only a brief existence of about two decades in the Iron Age, around 1000 BCE; this would be the period of King Saul (who had a reign of [2?]2 years, 1 Sam 13.1).

                                          Khirbet Qeiyafa fits neatly into Saul's reign; it was presumably built (or rebuilt?) by him to guard against Philistine incursion, particularly from Gath.

                                          And it could have been destroyed during the Philistine conquest of Israel, when King Saul died in battle (1 Sam 31).

                                          One problem for the identification of Qeiyafa and Sha`arayim is that the list of towns which includes Sha`arayim (Joshua 15.33-36) ends thus: "fourteen cities with their villages" (and this applies to all the groups of places in that chapter; they all have "with their villages"). Qeiyafa does not look like a city that would have associated villages or suburbs, but if we assume that "where applicable" (or "if any") is understood after "with their villages" the difficulty vanishes.

                                          Then there is the question whether such an ephemeral place would have its name recorded in the Bible; but if it was the site of a momentous event, as described in 1 Sam 17, then it might well rate a mention, and Sha`arayim is the name we see there (17.52).

                                          No matter how small its population and area, this place (now known as Khirbet Qeiyafa) would have had a name; its appellation in the Bronze Age may have been Sha`arayim, and this name could still have been applied to it at the time of the Israelite settlement in the land, as stated in Jos 15.36). If it had a different name around 1000 BCE, its new name Sha`arayim could have been substituted for the older name (somewhat anachronistically) in that record (Jos 15.36).
                                          The problematic verse describing the rout and the route of the Philistines (1 Sam 17.52) is corrupt (gy' for Gath in the first half, and Gath in the second half); and suspect ("up to  gates [sha`arey] of Eqron" and "two gates [sha`arayim, LXX " way of the gates"] ... up to Eqron"; so there could be not one but two references to Sha`arayim, or none at all, only "gates");  and ambiguous ("the Sha`arayim road" or "the road to Sha`arayim", as viewed from Socoh in the east or Gath in the west?). But the recorder obviously wants to say that "the men of Israel and Judah" pursued their Philistine foes all the way home to their cities, namely Gath and Eqron, and as a result there were Philistine bodies lying all along the route (or routes} to Gath and Eqron. Sha`arayim, a place in Judah (Joshua 15.36) was not another Philistine destination (as perhaps implied in the New English Bible: "The road that runs to Shaaraim, Gath, and Ekron"); Sha`arayim is more likely to be the starting point of the flight and of the pursuit (Revised Standard Version: "the wounded Philistines fell on the way from Shaaraim as far as Gath and Ekron"). 

                                          It may be that an emendation is necessary to achieve this solution, by adding M- ("from") to Sha`arayim. As a matter of interest, or even of significance, Mi and Sha in the (syllabic) script on the Qeiyafa ostracon are very similar, and both have vertical stance; so Mi could have been lost through a kind of haplography.(In the standard script, in Iron Age II, Shin is horizontal, while Mem is vertical).

                                          The recorder of this credible event has given us the place names we need to put us in the picture and to locate them on the map (17.1-3, 51-52). The Philistines were encamped on high ground between Azekah and Socoh, in the vicinity of Socoh, and the Israelite camp was on the opposite side of the Elah valley and stream, and was likewise on a hill, which we assume to be Khirbet Qeiyafa (which is also between Azekah and Socoh). The stream (nakhal, wadi) may have been dry at the time, but it is where David got five stones for his sling (17.40).  

                                          The Philistine army had come out of their camp and were lined up for battle facing the Israelites (17.21) and therefore facing Khirbet Qeiyafa (that is, Sha`arayim, the place with two gates). The Philistine stampede began there, at Sha`arayim, whether along a road or over open country.

                                          When interpreting a literary text such as 1 Samuel 17, it is not useful to approach it with absolutist logic: Kh Qeuyafa must have villages to be Sha`arayim; the Sha`arayim road, which ordinarily must mean the road to Sha`arayim, would have to be further down the track from Kh Qeiyafa, but derek may not mean road but route; disallowing the "two gates" connection between Kh Qeiyafa and the name Sha`arayim because other toponyms with -ayim are not "dual".

                                          This has been added to my ongoing essay on this subject:


                                          Brian Colless
                                          Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                                          On 14/07/2014, at 4:05 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                           

                                          I have now been told that there is indeed a seven-letter inscription on a pot, hiding in the bushes, biding its time, either waiting to pounce, or hoping we will forget about it.

                                          Is there something about it that would frighten the horses? 

                                          Maybe it has the same inscription as the Jerusalem Pithos fragments. 

                                          Or it is a LMLK inscription that actually names the king, and it is not David?

                                          Perhaps it supports Israel Finkelstein's resurrecting of King Saul, and his raising of his Low Chronology (in The Forgotten Kingdom), and possibly it affects Yosef Garfinkel's version of the High Chronology, which puts Khirbet Qeiyafa (plausibly identified with Sha`arayim)  in the time  of King David.

                                          Sha`arayim is listed among the towns of the tribe of Judah in Joshua 15:36, and so is Ekron (15.45; 13.3 has Ekron as one of the 5 Phi listine cities, including Gath).

                                          This fortress was certainly a surprise, as there is no hint of it in 1 Samuel 17, where we would be led to assume that King Saul had a tent, like the rest of his army.

                                          My thought is that the settlement (Khirbet Qeiyafa = Sha`arayim) was built by King Saul to protect the road that ran to Gath (cp. 1 Sam 17:52, where the Philistines were pursued along the way from Sha`arayim to Gath and Ekron), and it was destroyed when the Philistines overthrew Saul (1 Sam 31). Thus it was not in existence during the reign of David. 

                                          I have constructed this hypothesis on the basis of what I think I can see in the text of the Qeiyafa Ostracon, but my reading has been judged to be as hypothetical as all the other attempts. I also have to relate it to  this neo-syllabary concept I have recently stumbled on, or over. I want to see whether the other Qeiyafa inscription can assist in testing my hypothesis, that the alphabetic letters had three syllabic forms at this time. So it is not ready for publication in a concrete setting, just work in progress on the web.


                                          Brian Colless
                                          Massey University, Aotearoa/ New Zealand

                                           
                                          On 8/07/2014, at 4:09 PM, Brian Colless briancolless@... [ANE-2] wrote:

                                           
                                          We all know about the Qeiyafa Ostracon, found in the fortress (Sha`arayim) overlooking the Elah Valley where a shepherd-boy slew a giant.

                                          But another inscription was found there; reportedly not as extensive (only one word?), and it was promised for release or publication in 2013.

                                          Does anyone know what has happened to it? Any hints about its content?











                                        • driver40386
                                          Egyptian references to Naharaim (River-country), always concerned the land between the Orontes and the Euphrates.Jon SmythKitchener, ON. Can.
                                          Message 20 of 20 , Aug 16, 2014
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                                            Egyptian references to Naharaim (River-country), always concerned the land between the Orontes and the Euphrates.Jon SmythKitchener, ON. Can.
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