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Re: orion-list replies

Mostly I'm a lurker on this list since this is not my area of specialty,
but on comment of Joe Zias prompts me to raise a question. He wrote in part:

>3. Believe me I had no agenda and could care less in the beginning if it
>were male, female or whatever. The data fit the Essene hypothesis which
>incidentally seems to be accepted by all of those individuals publishing
>the scrolls. The nay sayer's aside from one (Hirschfield) are or appear
>to be a small minority and what ties them all together is the fact that
>they are not dirt archaeologists. I may be wrong but this is the
>impression that I have and it's understandable why they fail to
>understand the issue at hand.

This seems to me an unfair comment. Isn't the identification of Qumran as
Essene based on textual evidence (Pliny etc.) rather than archaeological
data? In fact, the individiuals publishing the scrolls who reportedly
accept the Essene hypothesis -- surely they are specialists in the text,
not in the archaeology? So, it could just as easily be said that the vast
majority of *supporters* of the Essen hypothesis "are not dirt

I have no opinion about the cemeteries -- I have no competence to evaluate
this type of evidence -- but the above quoted paragraph seems clearly
biased to me.

Paul Sodtke
London, Ontario
For private reply, e-mail to Paul Sodtke <psodtke@sympatico.ca>
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