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The Seal of Jezebel

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#1
I have to do weekly article summaries for my biblical archaeology class, and this week is anything to do with the divided monarchy (which is a broad topic). I found an article about the seal of Jezebel and thought it was really cool, so I used that article (it has to be an academic article), but it had no pictures! :bigfrown So I googled it and found this site that has some really cool pictures of it. The seal is missing a piece from the top, as it was chipped off. It bears the name yzbl (Jezebel), and has a lot of Egyptian symbolism, which was common for the Phoenicians to use. Also, the letters are stylistic of Phoenician letters, and as Jezebel was the daughter of the king of Phoenicia, it makes sense that they would make her seal after Phoenician artistic styles. Here's a picture of the seal with the missing part "added in" to show what letters may have been missing, and a link to the site that tells you all about it. :)



http://www.biblearchaeology.org/post/20 ... ified.aspx
 
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#3
I have read an article about that seal before in Biblical Archaeology Review magazine. It looks like a repurposed Egyptian seal, that someone added the Hebrew letters to as an after-thought.

I'd be interested in reading your summary if you would like to post it here when you are done. Better yet maybe you would be willing to let me host it on my website as a guest article? I'd be more than glad to do that. I need more content on my webpage anyhow! :)

~Josh
 
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#4
Also if need any suggestions for other things you might look at for the divided monarchy I have a few ideas. Jehu as depicted on the Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III stands out as a big one.
 
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#5
cybershark5886 said:
I have read an article about that seal before in Biblical Archaeology Review magazine. It looks like a repurposed Egyptian seal, that someone added the Hebrew letters to as an after-thought.

I'd be interested in reading your summary if you would like to post it here when you are done. Better yet maybe you would be willing to let me host it on my website as a guest article? I'd be more than glad to do that. I need more content on my webpage anyhow! :)

~Josh
That's interesting, so is it not believed to belong to Jezebel?

Our article summaries only need to be half a page double spaced, so there's not much to it. It basically says the same thing that that website I linked says...I doubt you'd want to use it :)
 
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#6
Caroline H said:
That's interesting, so is it not believed to belong to Jezebel?
Oh, what I meant was that the seal might be an Egyptian seal (shooting from the hip here - judging from how it looks) judging from the Egyptian Hieroglyphs on it which may have been reused (by adding the letters for the name YZBL soon afterward) by Semitic contemporaries in Phoenicia. The date of the seal as I understand it is correct for the period of Jezebel, so it may indeed be her. I'm just saying that it looks like the seal already had something on it and then had the name added later when it was used by Jezebel (although whether or not this is the biblical Jezebel is disputed - see my quote below though).

Now I haven't read that much on the seal and it is possible that the entire seal (letters and all) was designed at the same time. I could be wrong about the "Egyptian-seal" thing, and Phoenicia may have intentionally emulated the Egyptian style with heiroglyphs on the seal (which is within reason - Egypt is known to have cultural influences in Canaan: Byblos being the biggest example). I'll have to look into it more when I get the chance.

If it helps, here is what I wrote concerning it in the other Trivia thread in this section:

Ittobaal I is the same person as Ethbaal in 1 Kings 16:31, and the significance of this Biblical figure is that he was the father of Jezebel. Read here if you are interested further.

So now you can tell others that we have independent proof that Jezebel's father who is mentioned in the Bible existed (from Josephus, who quoted Menander of Ephesus)! Also, as an aside, a few years ago a seal with the Hebrew/Phoenician letters YZBL in were found on it, leading many to believe that it is the seal of Jezebel, therefore confirming her existence as well. Although some scholars say it could have been another Jezebel. Yet the counter point is made that not many "common" people would have been prominent enough to have their own seal, therefore it is likely that it was the Jezebel daughter of Ethbaal.
So for purposes of your summary I would take a cautiously optimistic stance (as opposed to the more skeptical scholarly "cautiously pessimistic" view). ;)

Caroline H said:
Our article summaries only need to be half a page double spaced, so there's not much to it. It basically says the same thing that that website I linked says...I doubt you'd want to use it :)
Well, if you ever wanted to expand it or free style another article of sufficient length (1 page is enough) my offer stands for hosting guest articles. :)

God Bless,

~Josh
 
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#7
P.S. I'm glad you posted this topic. It's very interesting and its just what this subforum needs and is designed for. I was getting sick of seeing only green on most of the topic postings (me - too much of me). Oh, wait..... you are green too. :lol

Edit: Between Nick, Lewis, Stovebolts, you, and I this subforum is swimming in green. :biggrin
 
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#8
Awesome Josh, thanks for the info :thumb And If I do end up writing anything I feel worthy of sharing, I'll definitely let you know. I'm going to write my term paper on Shechem (Tel Balatah), so if you're interested and if I'm confident with it, maybe I'll pass it along :study :)

cybershark5886 said:
P.S. I'm glad you posted this topic. It's very interesting and its just what this subforum needs and is designed for. I was getting sick of seeing only green on most of the topic postings (me - too much of me). Oh, wait..... you are green too. :lol
:lol
 
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#9
The Seal of Jezebel.
What a horrible thing to have in someone's collection.
It's probably cursed.