New discoveries in the City of David

On the About page, I mentioned that “things are developing so rapidly in the world of Biblical Archaeology” Yet, some of the finds were not totally unexpected.
It was exciting to read last year, and recently again (on Todd Bolen’s blog) and here too, about the excavations conducted by Eilat Mazar in the City of David. She found remains of a large monumental building, possibly the palace of King David. Seven years ago, Kathleen and I published a book called “From Sinai to Jerusalem“. It has a chapter called ‘King David’s palace and the Ark of the Covenant’. We wrote the following: “Scholars agree that David’s palace could only have stood on the summit of the hill occupying the area previously fortified by the Jebusites. The Bible gives no details of the style of building used, but we do know that the materials used in its construction, dressed building stones and cedar wood, were not in common use. No architectural remains firmly attributable to the palace have been found …”
This statement is no longer valid in the light of the new discoveries. No plans have been published yet, but parallels with other buildings and the finding of an proto-aeolic capital by the late Kathleen Kenyon made it possible for me to have proposed a reconstruction drawing of David’s palace some ten years ago. Minor details may need to be changed, but I believe that the location of the palace in relation to the stone-stepped structure and the basic outline of my reconstruction drawing are still correct.

David’s Palace
© Ritmeyer Archaeological Design, 2007

These excavations may prove archaeologically that Jerusalem was indeed the capital of Israel during the reign of David and beyond. Some have argued that this city was too small for a capital city. Does size matter? Look at some modern examples of capital cities which are by no means the largest cities in their respective countries: Washington DC (USA), Canberra (Australia), Brasilia (Brazil) and of course modern Jerusalem (Israel). The new evidence that has come to light indeed boosts the credibility of the Biblical record.

8 thoughts on “New discoveries in the City of David”

  1. Hmm, not surprising that Bryant Wood would be interested in a find of this sort. I hope that there will be clear voices from mainstream archaeology on the developments regarding these new discoveries, although inevitably my students and many other interested parties will gravitate to the voices claiming that it either proves the Bible right or that it is irrelevant since minimalists “know” that there was no kingdom in David’s time.

  2. Dr. Ritmeyer,
    Thank you for this blog. Here in the U.S. we have a hard time getting information such as this. I was directed here from Todd Bolen’s excellent blog. I had the pleasure of spending 3 1/2 months in Israel studying with Todd, and I cannot wait to get back! Thanks again!

  3. Dr. Ritmeyer,
    I also like to thank you for establishing this blog. Your prodigious Temple Mount research clearly shows where the Temple was located. Three years ago I purchased the Herodian Temple Mount model that you designed, and I continue to enjoy it on a daily basis. I’m looking forward to your designing a model of the Temple complex itself. I’m sure it will be great! Keep up the great work!!!

  4. shalom These excavations may prove archaeologically that Yerushalayim was indeed the capital of ha-shem gd of israel an the realiti of the Temple was located an pruvet was false is the Moslem Wakf has and the palestinian These excavations may prove archaeologically that Jerusalem was indeed the capital of Israel during the reign of David an now modern Yerushalayim is jewish not palestinian captail of the heart of the modern state of israel shalom

  5. BTW this blog was mentioned by Themelis Cuiper’s SocialGarden streams of branding & socialmarketing &:-) – you are doing a great job as he is pointing towards you!

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