Israel Finkelstein

Professor of Archaeology
Director of the Institute of Archaeology

   BA - Tel Aviv University, 1974
   MA - Tel Aviv University, 1978
   Ph.D. - Tel Aviv University, 1983
   Ph.D. Dissertation:
     The Izbet Sartah Excavations and the Israelite
     Settlement in the Hill Country

  Archaeological Field Work
1971 Educational excavation at Tel Beer-sheba, under Prof. Y. Aharoni
1972-74 Archaeological surveys in Sinai, under Dr. Z. Meshel
1976-78 Field Director, the Izbet Sartah excavations
1976-78 Director of the archaeological survey of Byzantine monastic remains in Southern Sinai
1977 Director of the rescue excavations at the mound of ancient Bene-Beraq
1979-80 Co-director of the Tel Ira excavations
1980-87 Director of the Land of Ephraim Survey
1981-84 Director of the Shiloh excavations
1985-86 Director of the Kh. ed-Dawwara excavations
1987 Director of the Dhahr Mirzbaneh excavation
1992-present Co-director, the Megiddo Excavations
1995 Co-director, the Megiddo Regional Survey


Current Projects

Selected Publications


  • Finkelstein, I., and Silberman N.A. 2001. The Bible Unearthed, Archaeolgy's New Vision of Ancient Israel and the Origins of Its Sacred Texts. New York.
  • Finkelstein, I., Ussishkin, D. and Halpern, B. (eds.). 2000. Megiddo III: The 19921996 Seasons. (Monograph Series of the Institute of Archaeology, Tel Aviv University) Tel Aviv.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1995. Living on the Fringe: The Archaeology and History of the Negev, Sinai and Neighbouring Regions in Bronze and Iron Ages. (Monographs in Mediterranean Archaeology 6). Sheffield.
  • Finkelstein, I. and Na'aman, N. eds. 1994. From Nomadism to Monarchy: Archaeological and Historical Aspects of Early Israel. Jerusalem.
  • Finkelstein, I., Lederman, Z. and Bunimovitz, S.1993. Highlands of Many Cultures The Southern Sumaria Survey: The Sites. (Monograph Series of the Institute of Archaeology, Tel Aviv University) Tel Aviv.
  • Finkelstein I. ed. 1993. Archaeological Survey in the Hill Country of Benjamin. Jerusalem.
  • Finkelstein, I. ed. 1993. Shiloh: The Archaeology of a Biblical Site . (Monograph Series of the Institute of Archaeology, Tel Aviv University No. 10). Tel Aviv.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1988. The Archaeology of the Israelite Settlement. Jerusalem.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1986. Izbet Sartah: An Early Iron Age Site Near Rosh Haayin, Israel. (BAR International Series 299). Oxford.
 Selected Recent Articles
  • Finkelstein, I. forthcoming. The Philistines in the Bible: A Late Monarchic Perspective.
  • Finkelstein, I. 2000. Omride Architecture, ZDPV 116:114-138. Finkelstein, I. forthcoming. The Rise of Jerusalem and Judah: The Missing Link. Levant.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1999. Hazor and the North in the Iron Age: A Low Chronology Perspective. BASOR 314:55-70. Finkelstein, I. 1999. State Formation in Israel and Judah, A Contrast in Context, A Contrast in Trajectory. NEA 62(1):35-52.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1998. The Rise of Early Israel: Archaeology and Long-Term History. In: Ahituv, S. and Oren, E.D. (eds.). The Origin of Early Israel - Current Debate, Biblical, Historical and Archaeological Perspectives (Beer-Sheva 12). Beer-Sheva: 7-39.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1998. Bible Archaeology or Archaeology of Palestine in the Iron Age? A Rejoinder. Levant 30:167-174.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1997. Pots and People Revisited: Ethnic Boundaries in the Iron Age I. In: Silberman, N.A. and Small, D. eds. The Archaeology of Israel: Constructing the Past, Interpreting the Present. Sheffield: 216-237.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1996. The Territorio-Political System of Canaan in the Late Bronze Age. Ugarit-Forschungen 28:221-255.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1996. Toward a New Periodization and Nomenclature of the Archaeology of the Southern Levant. In: Cooper, J.S. and Schwartz, G.M. eds. The Study of the Ancient Near East in the Twenty-First Century. Winona Lake: 103-123.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1996. The Stratigraphy and Chronology of Megiddo and Beth-shan in the 12th-11th Centuries B.C.E. Tel Aviv 23:170-184.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1996. The Philistine Countryside. IEJ 46:225-242.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1996. Ethnicity and Origin of the Iron I Settlers in the Highlands of Canaan: Can the Real Israel Stand Up? BA 59:198-212.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1996. The Archaeology of the United Monarchy: An Alternative View, Levant 28:177-187.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1995. The Date of the Philistine Settlement in Canaan. Tel Aviv 22:213-239.
  • Finkelstein, I. 1995. The Great Transformation: The 'Conquest' of the Highlands Frontiers and the Rise of the Territorial States. In: Levy, T.E. ed. The Archaeology of Society in the Holy Land. Leicester:349-365.

MA theses
Alon Shavit, 1992.
The Ayalon Valley and its Vicinity during the Bronze and Iron Ages
Dan Gazit, 1995.
The Besor Region in the Iron Age I According to Analysis of the Pottery from Stratum VIII at Tel Sera'.
Aharon Sasson, 1996.
The Pastoral Element in the Economy in Intermediate Bronze and Iron I Sites in the Highlands: An Archaeological-Ethnographic Perspective.
Edtal Levi, 1998.
Geographical Information System for Analysis of Spatial Distribution of Sites: Development, Programming and Application in Archaeological Data (co-supervisor - Itzhak Benenson).
Yuval Gadot, 1999.
The Wadi 'Ara Pass as an International Highway during the Bronze Age, Iron Age and the Persian Period, in the Light of the Settlement Patterns (co-supervisor - David Ussishkin).
Alexander Fantalkin, 2000.
Mesad Hashaviahu: Analysis of the Material Culture and its Contribution to Historical Reconstruction at the end of the Iron Age (co-supervisor - Nadav Naaman).
Eyal Buzaglo, in preparation.
Petrographic Investigation of Iron Age Pottery Assemblages from Megiddo and the North (co-supervisor - Yuval Goren).

Ph.D. Students
Yitzhak Meitlis, 1997.
The Judean Hill Country in the Middle Bronze Age.
David Ilan, 1999.
Northeastern Israel in the Iron Age I: Cultural, Economic and Political Structures and Transformations.
Norma Franklin, in preparation.
State Formation in the Northern Kingdom of Israel: Some Tangible Symbols of Statehood (co-supervisor - Nadav Na'aman).
Liora Kolska-Horwitz, in preparation.
A Diachronic Study of Patterns of Animal Exploitation in the Sinai Peninsula (co-supervisor - Eitan Tchernow).
Michal Ron, in preparation.
Deuteronomistic History in the Context of King Josiah's Reform; Cultural Product of a Nation's Constitution, or: National Constitution as a Cultural Product (co-supervisor - Nadav Na'aman).
Alon Shavit, in preparation.
Settlement Patterns in the Southern Coastal Plain in the Iron II. Asaf Yasur Landau, in preparation. Social Aspects of Aegean Immigration to the Southern Levant in the Second Millennium BCE (co-supervisors - Shlomo Bunimovitz and Irad Malkin).
Aharon Sasson, in preparation.
The Faunal Assemblage from Iron II Beer
-sheba (co-supervisors - Tamar Dayan and Zeev Herzog).
Natali Messika, in preparation.
Spatial Analysis Megiddo in the Late Bronze/Iron II Transition (co-supervisor - Itzhak Benenson).
Alexander Fantalkin, in preparation.
The Contacts between the Greek World and the Southern Levant, ca. 1000-538 BCE (co-supervisor - Irad Malkin).
Yuval Gadot, in preparation.
Tel Aphek at the End of the Late Bronze Age and the Beginning of the Iron Age: Typological, Chronological and Cultural Implications.


Volunteer on a dig!!! Publications in Archaeology Current Projects The Department of Archaeology and Ancient Near Eastern Civilizations The Sonia and Marco Nadler Institute of Archaeology