Monday, October 20, 2008
The James Ossuary and Oded Golan
Buy the book on Amazon.com.
Amy Dockser Marcus, a Wall Street Journal reporter, and the author of The View From Nebo: How Archaeology Is Rewriting the Bible and Reshaping the Middle East, has written a review of the book Unholy Business by Nina Burleigh. The book is the story behind the James Ossuary and the role Oded Golan, the owner of the box, played in its discovery or its forgery.
Dockser Marcus concludes her review:
What is saddest about the James Ossuary case is that, if the police are correct, Oded Golan took an ancient object, important in itself as a link to a lost past, and vandalized it in the hope of increasing its financial value. Such trickery seeks to exploit a problem at the heart of biblical archaeology: the desire to prove what is essentially unverifiable. That archaeology reveals a fuller picture of the daily lives of ordinary people in the biblical world should be enough. As Ms. Burleigh writes: "A pile of rocks on the ground is just a pile of rocks" until someone tells a compelling story about it.
This is a very informative review.
Professor of Old Testament
Northern Baptist Seminary
Tags: Archaeology, Dockser Marcus, James Ossuary, Nina Burleigh, Oded Golan