National Lecture Program

AIA Lecturer: Jennie R. Ebeling

Affiliation: University of Evansville

Jennie Ebeling is Associate Professor with the Department of Archaeology and Art History at the University of Evansville, where she was named the Outstanding Teacher of the Year for 2014.  She holds her degrees from the University of Arizona (Ph.D.) and Rutgers College, and her research interests are Syro-Palestinian archaeology; religion in Bronze Age Canaan and Iron Age Israel, women in Canaan and ancient Israel, ground stone artifact analysis, and ancient food and drink technology.  She has published widely, and her forthcoming works include Women in the Hebrew Bible World(Oxford University Press).  Professor Ebeling serves as the ground stone artifact specialist for multiple projects in Israel, and has also conducted extensive work with the Jezreel Expedition.


The beverage described most frequently in the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, wine played important roles in the ancient Israelite diet, economy, and religious life. The recent discovery of a large, well preserved winery complex cut into the limestone bedrock at Jezreel, in the fertile Jezreel Valley in Israel’s Galilee, offers new insights into the technology and scale of wine production in the region during the Iron Age (ca. 1200-586 BCE). The Jezreel winery also provides context for the dramatic story of Naboth’s vineyard in 1 Kings 21 and the events that brought down the House of Ahab, including the gruesome death of ancient Israel’s infamous Queen Jezebel.

Short bibliography and/or website on lecture topic:

Franklin, N. 2017. The Story of Naboth’s Vineyard and the Ancient Winery in Jezreel. 5/23/2017.

Franklin, N., Ebeling, J., Guillaume, P. and Appler, D. 2017. Have We Found Naboth’s Vineyard at Jezreel? Biblical Archaeology Review Nov/Dec: 49-54.

Women have made many important contributions to Biblical Archaeology during its 150-year history. In the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, local women and girls outnumbered the men and boys employed as laborers on many archaeological excavations in Palestine. While few female archaeologists were members of dig staff during the “golden age” of Biblical Archaeology between WWI and WWII, directors’ wives like Hilda Petrie and Grace Mary Crowfoot played active roles in their husbands’ field projects and worked hard behind the scenes in the off-season. Starting with the great British archaeologist Kathleen Kenyon in the 1950s, women have played more prominent roles on excavations in Israel and Jordan as specialists and staff members; still, relatively few women direct or co-direct excavations in the region today. In addition to cultural factors and the challenges women face in academia generally, women’s representation in field archaeology at the highest level is hindered by the sponsorship of many projects by conservative universities and organizations, including the Museum of the Bible in Washington, DC. This lecture will present a brief history of women in Biblical Archaeology and suggest ways to improve women’s representation in the field going forward.

Short bibliography and/or website on lecture topic :

Ebeling, Jennie. 2019. Missing from the Picture: American Women in Biblical Archaeology. Biblical Archaeology Review 45/4,5: 22, 24.

Dever, Norma. 2004. They Also Dug! Archaeologists’ Wives and their Stories. Near Eastern Archaeology 67/3: 162-173.

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