The Kingdom of Geshur and the Expansion of Aram-Damascus into the Northern Jordan Valley: Archaeological and Historical Perspectives

Omer Sergi, Assaf Kleiman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations

Abstract

Fragmented texts in the Hebrew Bible mention a kingdom named Geshur, usually in contexts that denote its independent existence and relations with King David’s royal court (e.g., 2 Sam 3:3; 13:37–38; 14:32; 15:8). Scholars investigating the history of this kingdom have frequently commented on the ambiguous and non-informative nature of these verses, especially in regard to political history and foreign affairs. Others have emphasized the contribution of archaeological research for elucidating some of the aspects mentioned above, and, in particular, for demonstrating the existence of a territorial entity around the Sea of Galilee during the early 1st millennium b.c.e. Nonetheless, the dynamic discussion has not inspired a reevaluation of the archaeological record in the northern Jordan Valley, the presumed home of the Geshurites, and most scholars have uncritically adopted the traditional archaeological views regarding the dating of sites located in this region. In this article, we challenge the common dating of some key sites (e.g., et-Tell and Tel ʿEn Gev) and consequently reexamine the nature of the political formation that emerged in the region in the early Iron Age and its possible identification with the kingdom of Geshur.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalBulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research
Volume379
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2018

Keywords

  • Geshur
  • Aram-Damascus
  • Hazael
  • Iron Age
  • Israel
  • succession narrative

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'The Kingdom of Geshur and the Expansion of Aram-Damascus into the Northern Jordan Valley: Archaeological and Historical Perspectives'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this