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Re: orion-list Golb on 63 BCE

In further contrast to Brad's post, I've read a lot about the archaeology
of the caves used at the time of the Bar Kokhba Revolt, and nothing that I
recall, by Yadin or Aharoni or others, has mentioned that these caves, in 
Nahal Hever and other areas south of Masada, were dug for the purpose. One
cave, the Cave of the Pool, was fairly well-developed, and the place where
water was collected was dug, obviously. I'll get the description and post
further notes rather than rely only on memory, in this instance.

At Qumran, not only Cave 4, across a ravine from the buildings at Qumran,
but Caves 5-7 (at least), opposite Cave 4, between the Wadi Qumran and the 
buildings, were dug--and have now collapsed. 

On the other hand, Magen Broshi and Hanan Eshel, who were digging Caves A,
B, C, and D when I visited, said that these *natural caves, if I remember
correctly, had been good places to live in the desert. They were cool in
summer, and warmer in winter, dry when it rained, etc. 

I don't see that there's a difference between natural and artificially dug
caves, as to whether they are "good" places to live, though a dug cave, or
a natural cave that's been enlarged, can have "built-in" features--such as
pool for water supply or mikveh or cistern, or holes in the rock for shelf
supports, or benches for sitting and/or storage. These features, it's
true, would mean that the cave would be more comfortable. 

Sigrid Peterson  UPenn  petersig@ccat.sas.upenn.edu

According to David Suter:
Quoting Bradley Harrison
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: blh198 [mailto:blh198@soton.ac.uk]
> > Sent: Wednesday, September 08, 1999 5:58 AM
> > To: orion@mscc.huji.ac.il
> > Subject: Re: orion-list Golb on 63 BCE
> . 
> > The caves at Quamran are far from the genre of the Barkhva 
> > caves. 

Dave Suter replied: 
> Note that Cave 4 (and the others near it) was a dug cave, and therefore
> different from the natural caves in the side of the cliff.  The introduction
> that I had to the site indicated that the dug caves would have been
> comfortable for habitation, unlike the natural ones.
> David Suter
> Saint Martin's College
For private reply, e-mail to petersig@ccat.sas.upenn.edu (Sigrid Peterson)
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