Backgrounders on the Bible through Biblical Archaeology

#1249 Herod’s Royal Theater Box


Herodium Excavations

Herodium Excavations (photo by Ferrell Jenkins)


In the last few years we’ve talked about the discovery of Herod’s Tomb at the ruins of his desert palace/fortress, Herodium. The discovery was announced in 2007. It took archaeologist Ehud Netzer 30 years to pin down the location. Since then the excavations have continued, uncovering a theater that also existed at the based of the Herodium mountain. And now there are interesting details being released about Herod’s private theater box and its decorations. That’s the topic of this program.

We also discuss the (temporary) return of the sarcophagus of Queen Helena of Adiabene to Jerusalem. Helena was a convert to Jerusalem, a few decades after Herod, and played an important role in helping procure food for Jerusalem residents during the famine mentioned in Acts 11:27-30. In the 19th century a French archaeologist excavated the site in East Jerusalem now known as the Tombs of the Kings. We visited that site during our 2008 Archaeological Study Tour. In fact, the photo at the top of this weblog was taken at the Tombs of the Kings.


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