Machaerus @ 50: Book Launch of the Final Report on the Herodian Citadel

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The 2019 ACOR Public Lecture Series presents: “Machaerus @ 50: Book Launch of the Final Report on the Herodian Citadel,” by Győző Vörös. This lecture took place at ACOR in Amman on March 13, 2019.

About the Lecture

The book launch of MACHAERUS III marks the 50th anniversary of the archaeological excavations at Machaerus, which began in 1968. The historical site of Machaerus (Gk. Μαχαιροῦς, meaning sword) was built by the Hasmonean Alexander Jannaeus in ca. 90 BC, and transformed into a royal palace and city by King Herod the Great in ca. 30 BC. From its hilltop location to the east of the Dead Sea, Machaerus could provide a view all the way to Jerusalem, Masada, Jericho, and even to Alexandreion. Pliny the Elder (Hist. Nat. V. 15, 16) acknowledged that “Machaerus, next to Jerusalem, was once the most strongly fortified place in Judea,” thanks in part to its unique strategic location overlooking the Dead Sea and the West Bank. Historical events at the fortress are narrated by Josephus, and through combining the information given by Josephus and the Gospels, Machaerus can be identified as the historical scene of the tragic birthday banquet of Tetrarch Herod Antipas, the place where Princess Salome danced, and the site of John the Baptist’s imprisonment and execution.

About the Lecturer

Professor Győző Vörös is a Member of the Hungarian Academy of Arts, and has been directing excavations in the Middle East for the past 25 years. He led the Hungarian Archaeological Mission in Egypt for 10 years (1994–1998 in Luxor-Thebes; 1998–2004 in Alexandria – Taposiris Magna), in Cyprus for 5 Years (2004–2009 in Paphos), and since 2009 in Machaerus, overlooking the Dead Sea in Jordan. He is Professor of Archaeology at the Pontifical Faculty of Biblical Sciences and Archaeology in Jerusalem, and Honorary Fellow at Mississippi State University. The current academic monograph is his 8th archaeological excavation final report, after his 117 preliminary articles on his field works in Egypt, Cyprus, and Jordan during the last quarter century.

You can see Dr. Voros’ 2016 ACOR Lecture on Machaerus here.

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