The Info List - Tel Arad

Tel Arad
Tel Arad
(Hebrew: תל ערד‬) is an archaeological tel, or mound, located west of the Dead Sea, about 10 kilometres (6 miles) west of the modern Israeli city of Arad in an area surrounded by mountain ridges which is known as the Arad Plain. The site is divided into a lower city and an upper hill which holds the only ever discovered "House of Yahweh" in the land of Israel.[1] Tel Arad
Tel Arad
was excavated during 18 seasons by Ruth Amiran
Ruth Amiran
and Yohanan Aharoni.


1 History 2 Sanctuary at Arad 3 See also 4 References 5 External links


Excavations at Tel Arad

The lower area was first settled during the Chalcolithic
period, around 4000 BCE. Excavations at the site have unearthed an extensive Bronze Age
Bronze Age
Canaanite settlement which was in place until approximately 2650 BCE. The site was then apparently deserted for over 1500 years until resettled during the Israelite period from the 11th century BCE onwards, initially as an unwalled piece of land cut off as an official or sacred domain was established on the upper hill, and then later as a garrison-town known as "The Citadel". The citadel and sanctuary were constructed at the time of King David and Solomon. Artifacts found within the sanctuary of the citadel mostly reflect offerings of oil, wine, wheat, etc. brought there by numerous people throughout the reign of the kings of Judah until the kingdom's fall to the Babylonians. However, during the Persian, Maccabean, Roman, and early Muslim
eras, locals continued to transport these items to the sacred precinct of the upper hill. Markers of these ancient Israelite rituals remain to this day, with broken pottery littering the entire site. Under the Judaean kings, the citadel was periodically refortified, remodeled and rebuilt, until ultimately it was destroyed between 597 BCE and 577 BCE whilst Jerusalem was under siege by Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar II. Among the most significant artifacts unearthed at Tel Arad
Tel Arad
are 91 ostraca in paleo-Hebrew referring to the citadel as the House of Yahweh. They are mostly orders to the quartermaster, commands and lists of names. The Eliyashiv Ostraca, all found in the same room, are addressed to a person named Eliyashiv, ordering him to deliver a specific quantity of wine, flour, etc. [2] It is believed that several citadels were built one upon the other and existed in the Hellenistic and Roman periods. Herod even reconstructed the lower city for the purpose of making bread. The site lasted until the Romans destroyed Jerusalem and completely expelled the "circumcised" in 135 AD. Tel Arad
Tel Arad
lay in ruins for 500 years until the Islamic period, when the former Roman citadel was rebuilt and remodeled by some prosperous clan in the area and functioned for 200 years until around 861 AD when there was a breakdown of central authority and a period of widespread rebellion and unrest. The citadel was destroyed and no more structures were built on the site. Sanctuary at Arad[edit]

Clay model house, 3,000-2,650 BCE

The temple at Arad was uncovered by archaeologist Yohanan Aharoni in 1962 who spent the rest of his life considering its mysteries, dying there in the mid-1970s. In the holy of holies of this temple two incense altars and a "standing stone" were found, probably having been dedicated to Yahweh. An inscription was found on the site by Aharoni mentioning a "House of Yahweh", which William G. Dever suggests may have referred to the temple at Arad or the temple at Jerusalem.[3][4][5] The lower settlement and the upper Israelite citadel are now part of the Tel Arad
Tel Arad
National Park which have begun projects to restore the walls of the upper and lower sites. See also[edit]

Archaeology of Israel Tourism in Israel


^ Aharoni, Yohanan (1981). Arad Inscriptions. University of Virginia: Israel
Exploration Society. Retrieved 2008-09-15.  ^ Extremely rare pottery from First Temple-era Bears Even Rarer Inscription, Israeli Archaeologists Discover, Haaretz ^ Aharoni, Yohanan (1981). Arad Inscriptions. University of Virginia: Israel
Exploration Society. Retrieved 2008-09-15.  ^ Dever, William G. What Did the Biblical Writers Know and When Did They Know It?: What Archaeology Can Tell Us About the Reality of Ancient Israel
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company (June 2002) ISBN 978-0-8028-2126-3 p.212 ^ King, Philip J.; Lawrence E. Stager Life in Biblical Israel Westminster/John Knox Press, U.S.; 1 edition (19 April 2002) ISBN 978-0-664-22148-5 p.314

External links[edit]

Tel Arad
Tel Arad
National Park Pictures of Tel arad

v t e

National parks of Israel

Jerusalem District

Bayt 'Itab Canada Park1 Castel City of David1 Ein Hemed Emek Tzurim1 Judaean Mountains1 Tomb of Samuel1

Northern District

Achziv Bar'am Beit Alfa Synagogue Beit She'an Beit She'arim Belvoir Fortress Capernaum Chorazin Gan HaShlosha Hamat Gader Hamat Tiberias Harod Spring Hermon1 Hexagons pool1 Horns of Hattin Hula Valley Hurshat Tal Hurvat Minia Kursi1 Montfort Castle Mount Arbel Mount Tabor Nimrod Fortress1 Rosh HaNikra Sde Amudim Sussita Tel Hazor Tel Kedesh Tel Megiddo Tzalmon Stream Tzippori Yehi'am Fortress

Haifa District

Ancient Caesarea HaSharon Park Mount Carmel Nahal Me'arot Tel Shikmona

Central District

Adullam-France Park Alexander stream Arsuf Hof HaSharon Mazor Mausoleum Migdal Afek Palmachim beach Rubin Stream Sidna Ali Tel Afek Tel Gezer Tzur Natan Yarkon

Southern District

Ashkelon Avdat Beit Guvrin Besor Stream Ein Avdat Ein Gedi Eshkol Mamshit Masada Monument to the Negev
Brigade Nitzana Semekh caves Shivta Tel Arad Tel Be'er Sheva Tel Lachish Tel Zafit

Judea and Samaria Area

Herodium1 Qumran1 Samaria1

1 Located in the Israeli-occupied territories

v t e

Southern District of Israel


Arad Ashdod Ashkelon Beersheba Dimona Eilat Kiryat Gat Kiryat Malakhi Netivot Ofakim Rahat Sderot

Local councils

Ar'arat an-Naqab Hura Kuseife Lakiya Lehavim Meitar Mitzpe Ramon Omer Shaqib al-Salam Tel as-Sabi Yeruham

Regional councils

al-Kasom Be'er Tuvia Bnei Shimon Central Arava Eshkol Hevel Eilot Hof Ashkelon Lakhish Merhavim Neve Midbar Ramat HaNegev Sdot Negev
(Azata) Sha'ar HaNegev Shafir Tamar Yoav

See also

metropolitan area Negev Arabah

Other sub-divisions: Central District Haifa District Jerusalem District Judea and Samaria Area Northern District Tel A