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Re: orion: DSS pottery

Pottery in relatively poorly excavated sites such as Qumran is 
notoriously difficult to date: especially if both an a quo and an ad 
quem is desired. Not all similar pottery is contemporary.
 That a few similar jars have been found as far away 
as Abila and as close as Jericho does not help. Getting excited about 
whether they belong to period 1 or 2 on the basis of De Vaux's notes, 
is a terrible waste of energy. Not only are you dealing with only one 
pot, but the entire strategy of distinguishing strata at Qumran was 
inadequate for its purposes. 
Whether the pottery is local -- and thus open to speculation as to whether it was created 
for scroll deposit -- though surely unlikely, absent evidence for 
scrolls at Abila and Jericho, can be easily and relatively cheaply 
established by identifying the source of the pottery's clay.

Thomas L. Thompson
Professor, University of Copenhagen

>The one jar found in a salvage dig in tombs near Abila, northern
> Jordan were mentioned in de Vaux, Arch. & DSS (as above), Ann.Dept. Antiq.
> Jordan 4-5 (1960) 116 (cf. pl V.1), and RevBib 67 (1960) 229. But,
> apparently, neither a photograph nor drawing of that jar has been published.
> Stephen Goranson   goranson@duke.edu