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New Finds in an Ancient Land

  • Ohr Kodesh Congregation 8300 Meadowbrook Lane Chevy Chase, MD, 20815 (map)

Day of Learning | Labor Day 2019

With Dr. Jodi Magness
Kenan Distinguished Professor for Teaching Excellence in Early Judaism,
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Acclaimed archaeologist Dr. Jodi Magness reveals her newest discoveries about the history and legend of Masada. She will take us on an archaeological journey which will include an examination of the Dead Sea Scrolls and the ancient synagogue at Huqoq.

Sessions will include:

Masada: The Last Stronghold of the Jewish Resistance Against Rome
In the first century B.C.E., Herod the Great, who ruled Judea as client king on behalf of Rome, built a fortified palace atop the mountain of Masada overlooking the Dead Sea. Seventy years after Herod's death, the First Jewish Revolt against Rome broke out and Jewish rebels occupied Masada. According to the ancient historian Flavius Josephus, at the end of the revolt the Romans besieged the mountain and the Jewish rebels committed mass suicide. We will survey the history and archaeology of Masada, including the results of excavations in the Roman siege works which Professor Magness co-directed in 1995.

The Archaeology of Qumran and the Dead Sea Scrolls
In 1946-1947, the first Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered by accident near the site of Qumran. Eventually the remains of approximately 1000 scrolls were found in 11 caves surrounding Qumran. In this slide-illustrated lecture, we will explore the archaeological remains of Qumran, which was inhabited by members of a Jewish sect who deposited the scrolls in the nearby caves, and examine the meaning and significance of the scrolls.

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More Than Just Mosaics: The Ancient Synagogue at Huquq in Israel’s Galilee
Since 2011, Professor Magness has been directing excavations in the ancient village of Huqoq in Israel's Galilee. The excavations have brought to light the remains of a monumental Late Roman (fifth century) synagogue building paved with stunning and unique mosaics, including biblical scenes and the first non-biblical story ever discovered decorating an ancient synagogue. In this third slide-illustrated lecture, Professor Magness will describe these exciting finds, including the discoveries made in last summer's season.


Register by August 28 for advance rates.
$65 In Advance, Friends of the Haberman Institute
$75 In Advance, General Public
$90 At the Door, All

Registration includes morning coffee and “nosh,” and a kosher lunch.
Doors will open at 9:30 AM for check in, registration and time to enjoy a morning snack. The first lecture will begin promptly at 10:00 AM.


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Dr. Jodi Magness

Dr. Jodi Magness

Dr. Magness is the current President of the Archaeological Institute of America, and has published 10 books, including The Archaeology of the Holy Land, and dozens of articles.

Specializing in the archaeology of ancient Palestine (modern Israel, Jordan, and the Palestinian territories) in the Roman, Byzantine, and early Islamic periods, her research interests include Jerusalem, Qumran and the Dead Sea Scrolls, ancient synagogues, Masada, the Roman army in the East, and ancient pottery - many of which she will share with our community this Labor Day!

Dr. Jodi Magness comes to the Haberman Institute through the Association for Jewish Studies Distinguished Lectureship Program.

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