BAR 30:02, Mar/Apr 2004
Review: Why Objects from the Antiquities Market Matter
We dont know where many of the objects in this book were found, but they have much to teach us.
Biblical Period Hebrew Bullae: The Josef Chaim Kaufman Collection
(Tel Aviv: Archaeological Center Publication, 2003) 452 pp., 421 figures, $150 (plus $18 shipping; order via e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org)
When I was a practicing lawyer, I was always eager to know the best argument the other side could make. In order to test my own position, I had to know what the opposition could muster. With that in mind, I would like to hear from anyone who thinks that Robert Deutsch should be condemned for publishing a series of bookssome by himself,1 some with other scholars2of Biblical-period inscriptions from private antiquities collections. That is, the inscriptionsseals, bullae, plaques, ostraca, vessels, etc.are unprovenanced. We dont know where they were found. Many of them were probably looted. Yet they have much to teach us.