Any list of the major archaeological discoveries of the last century of significance for understanding the world of the Bible must of necessity be arbitrary and based to a considerable degree on the selector's judgment; that is true of this list. Nevertheless, identifying these ten should arouse the interest of readers to the continuing work of archaeologists in the ancient Near East, including at least the eastern Mediterranean, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq and Iran. We should be reminded, too, that the only new facts about the Bible and the world in which the events occurred, the personalities lived, and it was written come from archaeological research. The search for the past and the resultant discoveries are always subject to chance finds, so at any point in time it is possible for evidence to surface that brings a biblical figure or event out of the dust of the past and into the present through the recovery of a new text, inscription, or relic of antiquity.
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