Dr. Ken Dark, who gave us some informative sessions earlier this year, has now made headlines with his proposal that he may have identified the site of Dalmanutha, mentioned in the Gospel of Mark. The story in Huffington Post appears here.
Galilean archaeologists still are saying Dark has misunderstood the evidence. They suggest the artifacts are consistent with fields related to Migdal which, by the way, is coming to be viewed as a thriving town/city with a robust economy in the early 1st century. Even if it turns out Dark is correct, he has not yet persuaded his peers. Given the intense (and nutty) criticism by mythicists of the mistakes in some of the archaeological analysis of Nazareth, extra caution seems to be appropriate. Once Dark has persuaded his peers (Motti Aviam or Stefano de Luca or Jim Strange or Eric Meyers) then we can be more confident that this claim has merit.
larryhurtado, 19th September 2013 at 8:22 am | Reply
Well, Dark is doing what scholars are supposed to do: He’s reached some “maybe” findings and published them in a scholarly journal so that other experts can consider them. Can’t complain about that, can we?
jfjoyner3, 19th September 2013 at 10:28 am | Reply
Normally, I would not complain about this. But Ken Dark and anyone writing about Nazareth (as Dark has done) is a special target of the mythicists (see the web site, and book, of Mr. Rene Salm, The Nazareth Myth … Salm was invited to present at SBL for the annual meeting in 2012), so extra caution is in order. It turns out that some bits of the mythicists criticisms are well founded. Also, Dark has not discussed his findings with two major Galilean archaeologists, both of whom have expressed doubt about his findings based on his preliminary comments. I do believe many, maybe most, archaeologists customarily discuss preliminary findings with their peers before going public, probably because so much (relevant) data is unpublished … at least, that’s what my Israeli archaeologist friends habitually do.
Please understand I am not trying to be argumentative, I have no standing to do so. I am just trying to point out that there is a reason to be a little more cautious in the area of Jesus-period Galilean archaeology.
Thank you for taking time to notice and respond to my comment.