Royal Judahite Jar Handles: Reconsidering the Chronology of the lmlk Stamp Impressions

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Abstract

The paper proposes a new chronology for the lmlk and the the so-called 'private' Judahite stamp impressions. It suggests that the lmlk stamp impression system was introduced in the final quarter of the 8th century BCE when Judah became an Assyrian vassal kingdom, and that it should be interpreted in light of the new economic and administrative policies that became operative in Judah during this period. The paper maintains that the lmlk system persisted and developed after Sennacherib's 701 BCE campaign, reusing old jars from sites not destroyed in the onslaught and also producing new jars with new types of stamp impressions. The paper further suggests that the jars with the so-called private stamp impressions were limited in number and restricted in distribution (primarily to the Shephelah of Judah), and were manufactured for only a short time (from 704–701 BCE) as part of Judah's preparations against the impending Assyrian campaign.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3-32
Number of pages30
JournalTel Aviv
Volume37
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2010

Keywords

  • ASSYRIAN EMPIRE
  • JUDAHITE STAMP HANDLES
  • KINGDOM OF JUDAH
  • LMLK
  • SENNACHERIB'S CAMPAIGN

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