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Re: animal bones found at Qumran

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  • dastacey62
    ... I am not sure that the bones need to be ground - just boiled up (think bones to thicken soup). Again I am not sure of the precise techniques but boiling up
    Message 1 of 6 , Jan 2, 2008
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      > The second explanation is that the bones, again ground, were to be
      > used in the production of cosmetics, as this is another well-known
      > industrial use for bone. Here again, I'm not an expert, but I do
      > recall reading somewhere (was it in Donceel?) that cosmetics were
      > found and/or produced at Qumran, so obviously this question too needs
      > to be addressed.

      I am not sure that the bones need to be ground - just boiled up (think
      bones to thicken soup). Again I am not sure of the precise techniques
      but boiling up bones and off-cuts of hide (e.g. ears) can produce not
      only gelatin - useful for the production of cosmetics - but also glue.
      If some animals were slaughtered at Qumran, then bones would have been
      a valuable bye-product. Apart from its use in carpentry glue may have
      been used in the preparation of a writing surface on parchment.
      However, as far as I know (and perhaps some one out there has more
      expertise) such use of glue on parchment is only known from the
      medieval period onwards.

      David Stacey
      UK
    • Trudy Kawami
      .Animal bones have many uses including ivory-like combs, ornaments & inlay. For these purposes the bones need to be cleaned, dried & aged. Keeping them in
      Message 2 of 6 , Jan 2, 2008
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        .Animal bones have many uses including ivory-like combs, ornaments &
        inlay. For these purposes the bones need to be cleaned, dried & aged.
        Keeping them in ceramic jars would not accomplish this. Bones for glue &
        gelatin are boiled out when they are fresh, so there would be no need
        for jars to bury them in. Bones have been used in ceramic production but
        not in the area & period under consideration. Bone china is another name
        for porcelain, a ceramic body unknown, even in China, at this period.

        There may well be an industrial purpose for the jars of bones, but it is
        not the above. By the way, which bones were saved? Long bones, joints,
        ribs? And what animal(s) did they come from? All bones are not equal and
        the answer to these questions could point to a meaning/use.

        Trudy Kawami_



        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • dastacey62
        Trudy. According to Zeuner (Notes on QUmran PEQ 1960) the bones were mainly of sheep or goat with a few from cows. Most were found buried under large sherds or
        Message 3 of 6 , Jan 2, 2008
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          Trudy. According to Zeuner (Notes on QUmran PEQ 1960) the bones were
          mainly of sheep or goat with a few from cows. Most were found buried
          under large sherds or in broken cooking pots, a few in complete
          cps."many must have gone into the jars as fragments." "All contained
          odd bones or articulated fragments only" The majority contained
          various bones from one animal but some from as many as four. "The
          maximum number of identifiable bones of any one specimen was twenty-
          two." "Where an individual was evidenced by one or two bones only,
          these were nearly always metapodials, bones on which there is no
          flesh to eat."
          It would appear from this that the bones were broken down and boiled
          up in the cps, a number of which were cracked possibly from the heat
          of the fire. Any odd bits of hide which may have been included
          originally did not survive (or escaped identification - as far as we
          are told no analyses were carried out to try to identify hide/hair).

          The production of glue seems probable to me.

          David Stacey
          UK

          --- In ANE-2@yahoogroups.com, "Trudy Kawami" <tkawami@...> wrote:
          >
          > .Animal bones have many uses including ivory-like combs, ornaments &
          > inlay. For these purposes the bones need to be cleaned, dried &
          aged.
          > Keeping them in ceramic jars would not accomplish this. Bones for
          glue &
          > gelatin are boiled out when they are fresh, so there would be no
          need
          > for jars to bury them in. Bones have been used in ceramic
          production but
          > not in the area & period under consideration. Bone china is another
          name
          > for porcelain, a ceramic body unknown, even in China, at this
          period.
          >
          > There may well be an industrial purpose for the jars of bones, but
          it is
          > not the above. By the way, which bones were saved? Long bones,
          joints,
          > ribs? And what animal(s) did they come from? All bones are not
          equal and
          > the answer to these questions could point to a meaning/use.
          >
          > Trudy Kawami_
          >
          >
          >
          > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          >
        • kessler_paul
          I only referred to bone china in the course of making a point; I also referred to prehistoric and historic bone-tempered pottery found in Texas. If people
          Message 4 of 6 , Jan 2, 2008
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            I only referred to bone china in the course of making a point; I also
            referred to prehistoric and historic bone-tempered pottery found in
            Texas. If people living in what is today Texas had, in prehistoric
            times, discovered that ground bone could be used to temper pottery,
            surely one must inquire whether pottery-makers living at Qumran also
            knew of this trick and employed it. In addition, from what I
            understand ground bone is also used in various cosmetics.

            I hope people will agree with me that these (and other similar)
            avenues of inquiry make better sense than leaping to the conclusion
            that since the inhabitants of Qumran stored some animal bones in
            jars, therefore they were religious sectarians.

            Paul Kessler (New York, NY)


            --- In ANE-2@yahoogroups.com, "Trudy Kawami" <tkawami@...> wrote:
            >
            > .Animal bones have many uses including ivory-like combs, ornaments &
            > inlay. For these purposes the bones need to be cleaned, dried &
            aged.
            > Keeping them in ceramic jars would not accomplish this. Bones for
            glue &
            > gelatin are boiled out when they are fresh, so there would be no
            need
            > for jars to bury them in. Bones have been used in ceramic
            production but
            > not in the area & period under consideration. Bone china is another
            name
            > for porcelain, a ceramic body unknown, even in China, at this
            period.
            >
            > There may well be an industrial purpose for the jars of bones, but
            it is
            > not the above. By the way, which bones were saved? Long bones,
            joints,
            > ribs? And what animal(s) did they come from? All bones are not
            equal and
            > the answer to these questions could point to a meaning/use.
            >
            > Trudy Kawami_
            >
            >
            >
            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            >
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