Tag Archives | Dead Sea Scrolls

Essenes May Have Authored Dead Sea Scrolls

Dead Sea ScrollsPart of the mystery of the Dead Sea Scrolls is unraveling. Via the Daily Mail (yes, I know it’s a tabloid rag, but they have good photos…):

It has been debated for centuries, but scholars think they are one step closer to discovering who wrote The Dead Sea Scrolls.

The world’s oldest known biblical documents may have been penned by a sect called the Essenes, according to scholars who studied material discovered in caves at Qumran, in the West Bank.

Scholars previously believed the 2,000-year-old scrolls were written by a Jewish sect from Qumran in the Judean Desert and were hidden in the caves around 70AD, when the Romans destroyed the temple in Jerusalem.

But this new research says that all the textiles are made of linen, rather than wool, which was the preferred textile used in ancient Israel.

The Dead Sea Scrolls consist of nearly 900 texts, the first batch of which were discovered by a Bedouin shepherd in 1947.

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Seventy Metal Books That Could Change Our View Of The Bible

Photo: Einarspetz (CC)

Photo: Einarspetz (CC)

A new way to rewrite history: find another version already written. A discovery to rival the Dead Sea Scrolls has seventy metal books found in a cave in Jordan. These books may give a new perspective to the days of Christianity. Via Daily India:

The discovery of seventy ancient metal books in a cave in Jordan is said to have the possibilities of unlocking some of the secrets of the earliest days of Christianity.

The tiny books, their lead pages bound with wire, have left academics divided over their authenticity, but they say that if they are verified, they could prove as pivotal as the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls in 1947.

The pages are not much bigger than a credit card, and on them are images, symbols and words that appear to refer to the Messiah and, possibly even, to the Crucifixion and Resurrection.

Adding to the intrigue, many of the books are sealed, prompting academics to speculate they are actually the lost collection of codices mentioned in the Bible’s Book Of Revelation.

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Dead Sea Scrolls Go Digital

Dead Sea ScrollsWant your very own copy of the Dead Sea Scrolls? You’ll soon be able to access the ancient writings in their – sort of – original form thanks to this interesting new project brought to you by the Israel Antiquities Authority and Google.

Joel Greenberg of The Washington Post explains:

The joint project is the latest stage of gradually widening access to the 2,000-year-old documents, once available to only a restricted group of scholars but made more accessible in recent decades through facsimile editions and published studies. Organizers say the first images will be online in a few months.

The project marries “one of the most important finds of the previous century with the most advanced technology of the next century,” said Pnina Shor, the director of the project at the Antiquities Authority. “We are putting together the past with the future in order to share it.”

The scrolls were discovered in the late 1940s and the 1950s in caves east of Jerusalem, near the ruins of Qumran on the Dead Sea.

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Who Wrote The Dead Sea Scrolls?

From Discovery News:

The recent decoding of a cryptic cup, the excavation of ancient Jerusalem tunnels, and other archaeological detective work may help solve one of the great biblical mysteries: Who wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls?

Dead Sea Scrolls

The new clues hint that the scrolls, which include some of the oldest known biblical documents, may have been the textual treasures of several groups, hidden away during wartime—and may even be “the great treasure from the Jerusalem Temple,” which held the Ark of the Covenant, according to the Bible.

The Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered more than 60 years ago in seaside caves near an ancient settlement called Qumran. The conventional wisdom is that a breakaway Jewish sect called the Essenes—thought to have occupied Qumran during the first centuries B.C. and A.D.—wrote all the parchment and papyrus scrolls.

But new research suggests many of the Dead Sea Scrolls originated elsewhere and were written by multiple Jewish groups, some fleeing the circa-A.D.… Read the rest

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Locally Made: The Dead Sea Scrolls

Source: Italian National Institute of Nuclear Physics

Source: Italian National Institute of Nuclear Physics

Discovery News reports that researchers who probed tiny fragments of a Dead Sea Scroll with protons found its chemistry matches that of the water in the area where the ancient document was found:

Proton beams have shed new light on the origin of the longest of the Dead Sea scrolls, suggesting its parchment was manufactured locally.

According to a study carried out at the labs of the Italian National Institute of Nuclear Physics (INFN) in Catania, Sicily, the 28-foot-long Temple Scroll was made in Qumran, in what is now Israel, in the same area on the Dead Sea coast where the faded parchments were found hidden in caves half a century ago.

The scrolls, a collection of about 900 highly fragmented documents, are considered one of the greatest archeological discoveries of the 20th century. They include the earliest written texts of the Bible and are nearly 2,300 years old.

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