Sites & cities that bear the name of Khirbet el-Qom

Khirbet el-Qom

First trace of activity : ca. 8th century B.C.E
Last trace of activity : ca. 3rd century B.C.E
Recorded names : Khirbet al-Kum, Maqqedah, Makkedah?

Description : Khirbet el-Qom (or: al-Kum) is an archaeological site from the West Bank, in the territory of the biblical kingdom of Judah, between Lachish and Hebron, 14 km to the west of the latter. A cache of 1,700 ostraca in Aramaic was found there, dating from the Persian and Hellenistic periods, during which the area was classified as the Persian province of Idumea, with a mixed population of North Arabs, Edomites and Jews. The site is called Maqqedah in the Idumean ostraca . Based on this, some scholars identify Kh. el-Qom with biblical Makkedah (Joshua 10:10, 16, 17, 21, 28, 29; 12:16; 15:41).The site contains two tombs. The tombs were investigated by William Dever in 1967 following their discovery by tomb-robbers and following the earlier discoveries of Asherah-relating inscriptions at Kuntillet Ajrud. Both tombs contain inscriptions. The inscription from Tomb 2 is associated with a "magic hand" symbol, and reads: "Uriyahu the honourable has written this Blessed is/be Uriyahu by Yahweh And [because?] from his oppressors by his asherah he has saved him [written] by Oniyahu" " his asherah ...and his asherah"The inscriptions date from the second half of the 8th century BCE, slightly after the Kuntillet Ajrud inscriptions. Unlike the Kuntillet Ajrud inscriptions, they do not include a place-name with the name of Yahweh (the Kuntillet Ajrud inscriptions talk of "Yahweh of Samaria" and "Yahweh of Teman"); this seems to indicate that they were written after the fall of Samaria, which left Yahweh as the god of one state only.

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