"Othmar Keel's emphasis on the significance of iconography for understanding the Bible and its contexts has been one of the most important advances in modern scholarship. It's natural that one of his crowning works took on the crucial (and vexed) question of the development of Israelite monotheism, and to have that ambitious book now condensed and translated is a great gift to students. The very helpful introduction by Brent Strawn, the most influential teacher of the method in North America, makes this volume indispensable even to those of us who have read the German edition."
Jerusalem, with its turbulent history, is without doubt one of the best- known cities of the world. A long line of foreign powers have ruled over it, from as far back as biblical times. But the city owes its importance not to them but to the fact that it is the birthplace of monotheism. Othmar Keel sketches in broad brush strokes the development of Israelite-Jewish monotheism and its integration of polytheistic symbols and perceptions. Abundant maps and illustrations enhance the volume.
- Publisher Fortress Press
- ISBN 9781451478181
- Format Paperback
- Dimensions 6 x 9
- Pages 282
- Publication Date June 15, 2017
Part 1: Introductory Matters
1. Three Preliminary Remarks
2. Jerusalem’s Setting
3. The Names of Jerusalem
Part II: The History of Jerusalem
4. A Strong Canaanite City of the Middle Bronze Age IIB
5. A City under Egyptian Sovereignty
6. Jerusalem and the Israelite Tribes
7. Jerusalem Becomes the Residence of David . . . and YHWH
8. Solomon, Builder of the First Temple and Legendary Monarch
9. Competition and Cooperation with the Northern Kingdom
10. Assyrian Rule of Jerusalem and the Prophet Isaiah
11. The Fall of Assyria and the Reorganization of Jerusalem and Judah under Josiah
12. Cooperation or Confrontation with Babylon? The Problem after Josiah’s Death
13. The Exile: Lamentation, Reproach, Pleading, and Visions of Renewed Splendor
14. Jerusalem under Persian Rule: The Second Temple Period
15. Conflict with Hellenism: Jerusalem from Alexander the Great to Pompey
Part III: Closing Thoughts
17. Afterword: A Few Remarks on History Writing
To have this ambitious book now condensed and translated is a great gift to students.
At once accessible and masterful, this work is very highly recommended for interested students and lay persons alike.
“In this most recent of his field-changing contributions to biblical studies, Othmar Keel beautifully weaves together Jerusalem’s religious history and the conceptualizations of divinity at home in this capital city. A visually stunning volume, it draws extensively on images, texts and archaeology, inviting readers to see Jerusalem and the One God as if for the first time. At once accessible and masterful, this work is very highly recommended for interested students and lay persons alike.”
The combination of ancient iconography as represented on seals and the theological concepts as understood by the author create an original and unparalleled history of the city.
“In this exciting book Othmar Keel, the master of Ancient Near Eastern iconography, reconstruct a theological history of Jerusalem. Well structured and well written, this book provides a synthesis of the author's ideas concerning the role of Jerusalem in the rise and expansion of monotheism. The combination of ancient iconography as represented on seals and the theological concepts as understood by the author create an original and unparalleled history of the city. “
The pressure of being short has produced a pearl in a clam.
“Othmar Keel has done a very good job in reducing his own 1384 pages on Jerusalem into a handy format. The pressure of being short has produced a pearl in a clam. 77 figures illustrate not only the text, but give also an additional approach and insights into most recent discoveries of Jerusalem. This portrayal of the city and its history is a welcome companion for all pilgrims and tourists, who wish further information about the early history of the Holy City beyond their tour guide. The book is also very readable and suitable as a textbook for beginners of a course of the early history of Jerusalem or an introductory course of the religion(s) of the Ancient Israel. This well written book is a must.”
Whether you agree with all of his conclusions or not, you will never look at ancient history in the same way.
“In this tour de force ably edited and introduced by Brent Strawn, Othmar Keel boldly reconstructs the history of Jerusalem verbally and visually. It is a fitting culmination of his unflagging work since 1972, when he single handedly launched a new trajectory in biblical research. From the Middle Bronze Age to the time of Pompey, Professor Keel reconstructs not only the history of a city but also the rise of monotheism and in so doing blazes new pathways for ecumenical dialogue. Whether you agree with all of his conclusions or not, you will never look at ancient history in the same way."
Othmar Keel provides a unique and a most important contribution to our comprehension regarding the formative stages of monotheism.
“This fascinating book is a concise English version of Othmar Keel’s seminal work (Jerusalem und der eine Gott, 2011, second edition 2014). It presents the captivating story of the rise of monotheism as reflected through the history of Jerusalem spanning almost two millennia, from the early second millennium to the Roman conquest of the city (1700-63 BCE). The book offers a first opportunity to the English speaking general public to access the ideas of the founder of the Fribourg School (Switzerland), who innovatively brought to the foreground the highly importance of the ancient visual records of the Holy Land, its artefactual archaeological finds and materiality, for tracing the progress of the belief in One God. By combining his vast knowledge of the Hebrew Bible, his profound understanding of the iconography of ancient Israel, Egypt, the Levant and Mesopotamia, Othmar Keel provides a unique and a most important contribution to our comprehension regarding the formative stages of monotheism.”