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The Bone Box redux

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  • Bob Schacht
    The New Yorker dated April 12, 2004 contains a feature article entitled, Written in Stone, by David Samuels. It reviews the whole issue of the James
    Message 1 of 1 , May 23, 2004
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      The New Yorker dated April 12, 2004 contains a feature article entitled,
      "Written in Stone," by David Samuels. It reviews the whole issue of the
      "James ossuary," with mention of all the principal players, including
      Rochelle Altman's allegation that the inscription was a forgery. The
      article also reviews the controversial "Jehoash Tablet" which supposedly
      provided archaeological evidence for Jehoash's restoration of King
      Solomon's temple, which some people might use to vindicate Jewish claims to
      the Temple Mount, even though the provenance of the tablet was uncertain.
      This led to an investigation by Amir Ganor, chief of the Israel Antiquities
      Authority's theft investigation unit. Ganor's investigations led to Oded
      Golan, the antiquities dealer who owned the James Ossuary. Golan also
      turned out to be the source of the Jehoash Tablet.

      There are all kinds of interesting parallels in this detective story. Golan
      was the source of both the Jehoash Tablet and the James Ossuary. Both were
      purchased on the black market, so their original provenance was unknown.
      And, strangely enough, both tablet and ossuary suffered damage in shipment.
      The Jehoash Tablet was denounced as a forgery by Yosef Naveh, and the James
      ossuary was denounced as a forgery by Altman. Altman apparently was also
      suspicious of the Jehoash Tablet.

      These feature pieces in the New Yorker can be longish, so I won't try to
      summarize the whole thing. But it is good enough so that those on this list
      who were interested in the James Ossuary might want to take a look at this
      interesting article.

      Bob
      Robert M. Schacht, Ph.D.
      Northern Arizona University
      Flagstaff, AZ
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