1st Edition

The Social Archaeology of Late Second Temple Judaea From Purity, Burial, and Art, to Qumran, Herod, and Masada

By Eyal Regev Copyright 2023
    286 Pages 45 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book analyzes social ideology and social relationships in late Second Temple Judaea, studying a range of archaeological material and sites to better understand both communal and individual trends in Jerusalem and its environs.

    Using several different methodologies, the book brings to light new ideas about social trends such as individualism among Jews and Judeans during the late Second Temple period. It provides in-depth analysis of the social aspects of ritual baths, burial caves, ossuaries, and decorated oil lamps, as well as thorough examinations of the sites of Khirbet Qumran, Herod’s palaces, and Masada during the First Jewish Revolt against Rome.

    Social Archaeology of the Late Second Temple Judaea is suitable for students and scholars interested in the history, society, and archaeology of the Jews in the Second Temple period as well as the social background of early Christianity, early Rabbinic Judaism, and Levantine archaeology.

    Introduction, 1. Ritual Baths, Imported Pottery, and Gentile Impurity: Judaean Ethnicity Markers in the Hasmonean Period,2. Pure Individualism: Non-Priestly Purity, Religious Experience, and the Self, 3. Family Burial Caves, Family Identity, and Family Structure in Jerusalem and its Environs, 4. Loculi and Ossuaries: The Family and the Individual in Judean Burial Caves, 5. Art as Style: Why were Ossuaries and Southern Oil Lamps Decorated?, 6. The Archeology of Sectarianism in Kh. Qumran: Spatial Organization, Ritual, Resistance, and Hierarchy, 7. Herod’s Baths and Palaces: Judaean Identity, Court Society, and Royal Ideology, 8. Feasting Before the War: Social Structure and Organization of Masada’s Rebels, Conclusions: The Judaean Individual within Judaean Society.


    Eyal Regev is Professor of Jewish Studies in the Martin (Szusz) Department of Land of Israel Studies and Archaeology at Bar-Ilan University, Israel. His books include The Sadducees and their Halakhah, Sectarianism in Qumran, The Hasmoneans: Ideology, Archaeology, Identity and The Temple in Early Christianity: Experiencing the Sacred. He has published several journal articles on the archaeology of Second Temple Judaea.