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Strata: Woollae Bullae, Devra Wexler, Biblical Archaeology Review (26:3), May/Jun 2000.

Tel Kedesh

Tel Kedesh, By דוידוד – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,

Team Hopes to Find More Seals at Kedesh

Spurred by the discovery of a massive hoard of bullae—stamped pieces of clay used to seal documents—the excavation team at Tel Kedesh hopes it is on the verge of uncovering an entire ancient bullae archive. Nearly 2,000 bullae were uncovered last summer in a single 1-meter by 1-meter-square excavation area at Kedesh, located in the Upper Galilee, about 22 miles north of Tiberias. According to dig directors Sharon Herbert of the University of Michigan and Andrea Berlin of the University of Minnesota, the bullae were discovered in a late Hellenistic era building, measuring 120 by 170 feet, also discovered last summer.

As is often the case in archaeology, the bullae were discovered accidentally. The dig’s faunal analyst had requested that the excavators search for bird and fish bones, so volunteers were carefully sifting the earth in one corner of a room of the large building. The hoard they found is one of only 11 such Hellenistic bullae collections known and is the fourth largest uncovered in situ. of the room was excavated last year, Herbert and Berlin expect to find more bullae this season and are excited by the prospect of obtaining a complete bullae archive.

Read the rest of Strata: Woollae Bullae in the online Biblical Archaeology Society Library.

Posted in: Hellenistic Period

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