Biblical Archaeology Review 13:1, January/February 1987

Lachish—Key to the Israelite Conquest of Canaan?

By David Ussishkin

It is now more than seven years since my first report to BAR readers on the excavation at Biblical Lachish (“Answers at Lachish,” BAR 05:06). At that time, I primarily discussed Iron Age Lachish, the Lachish of the Judean monarchy. Judean Lachish was twice conquered and destroyed. Lachish Level III was conquered and destroyed in 701 B.C. by the Assyrian ruler Sennacherib. Lachish was rebuilt (Level II) and then conquered again and destroyed again in 588/6 B.C. by Nebuchadnezzar the Babylonian, as is known from the Bible (see Jeremiah 34:7) as well as from the excavations and from the famous Lachish letters found in the city gate.a

Now we have dug deeper. We have reached the levels of the Canaanite city and of Joshua’s time and earlier.

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