Archaeologists Dig Out the Biblical Bad Guys

The Philistines may have gotten the short end of the Biblical stick, but an archaeological dig at the City of Gath may paint a more nuanced portrait of Goliath's people.

Diggers at Gath have also found shards preserving names similar to Goliath — an Indo-European name, not a Semitic one of the kind that would have been used by the local Canaanites or Israelites. These finds show the Philistines indeed used such names and suggest that this detail, too, might be drawn from an accurate picture of their society.

The findings at the site support the idea that the Goliath story faithfully reflects something of the geopolitical reality of the period, Maeir said — the often violent interaction of the powerful Philistines of Gath with the kings of Jerusalem in the frontier zone between them.

"It doesn't mean that we're one day going to find a skull with a hole in its head from the stone that David slung at him, but it nevertheless tells that this reflects a cultural milieu that was actually there at the time," Maeir said.

Matti Friedman has the full story: Link


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Yeah, Waltz, I too think linguistics is a bunch of hooey. Whatever dude. Keep in mind that for many centuries, no trace of the Philistines was found outside the Biblical narrative. The archaeology that eventually found them was based entirely on the Bible and kicked quite a bit of mud in the face of skeptics who didn't believe they existed.
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