Jodi Magness, Ph.D.
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Jodi Magness pubications, papers, articles at Google Scholar

  Jodi Magness

University of North Carolina

Jodi Magness holds a senior endowed chair in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill: the Kenan Distinguished Professor for Teaching Excellence in Early Judaism. In January 2014, she was elected First Vice-President of the Archaeological Institute of America.

Latest Book
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Biblical Archaeology of the Holy Land

From 1992-2002, Professor Magness was Associate/Assistant Professor of Classical and Near Eastern Archaeology in the Departments of Classics and Art History at Tufts University, Medford, MA.

Professor Magness received her B.A. in Archaeology and History from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (1977), and her Ph.D. in Classical Archaeology from the University of Pennsylvania (1989).

From 1990–92, Professor Magness was Mellon Post-Doctoral Fellow in Syro-Palestinian Archaeology at the Center for Old World Archaeology and Art at Brown University.

Professor Magness specializes in the archaeology of ancient Palestine (modern Israel, Jordan, and the Palestinian territories) in the Roman, Byzantine, and early Islamic periods. Her research interests include Jerusalem, Qumran and the Dead Sea Scrolls, ancient synagogues, Masada, the Roman army in the East, and ancient pottery.

Click here for more than 64,000 references to Jodi Magness.

If you would like to stay current with Dr. Magness's
most recent digs and research, click here.

news

The large number of academic and general interest articles authored by and about Jodi Magness comprise more news in volume and frequency than this website can post. The "more than 64,000 references" link above is a start.

The table below lists news articles with special reference to currently active projects

Many archaeologists wait their entire career for one big find. UNC-Chapel Hill's Jodi Magness? Well, let's just say that she's having a spectacular time making discovery after discovery. (FROM WUNC.org)

In 2011, Magness took a team to Israel to identify a dig location. They hoped to find an ancient synagogue. "We didn't actually know that there was a synagogue of this type before we started digging," Magness said. It was a big site and it was overgrown.

"And really by luck we came down right on the eastern wall of the synagogue in that very first sounding that we made." The 5th century synagogue is located in Huqoq, an ancient Jewish village in Israel's Lower Galilee.

Biblical Archaeological Review - Huqoq 2014: Update from the FieldJodi Magness and Karen Britt   •  07/14/2014 From Biblical Archaeology Society:
Bringing the Ancient World to Life

Jodi Magness and Karen Britt • 07/14/2014- The Huqoq Excavation Project is excavating a fifth-century C.E. synagogue at Huqoq, an ancient village in Israel's Lower Eastern Galilee located three miles west of Magdala (home of Mary Magdalene) and Capernaum (where Jesus taught in the synagogue). Below, excavation director Jodi Magness and mosaics specialist Karen Britt discuss a new mosaic discovered during the 2014 excavation season.

Mystery Mosaic Discovered in Ancient Galilee Synagogue

Researchers... believe that they have uncovered the first ancient synagogue mosaic to feature a non-biblical narrative.

In 2012, the team, led by Jodi Magness, Kenan distinguished professor for teaching excellence in early Judaism at Chapel Hill, excavated a mosaic at the 5th-century synagogue at Huqoq, in Israel's Lower Galilee, which represented Samson tying torches to foxes' tails, per Judges 15:4. Last year, the scholars found a second mosaic, which depicted Samson shouldering Gaza's gate (per Judges 16:3) (Article: Jewish Daily Forward)

UNC PRESS RELEASE                                              UNC WEBSITE ARTICLE

UNC Press release; click to visit webpageUNC Website report, click to visit webpage

Did the Story Of Noah's Ark Actually Happen?

INSIDE EDITION spoke with Archeologist Jodi Magness about the possibility of Noah's Ark actually existing.

Inside Edition - Jodi Magness

wncn-tv Jodi Magness

"Archaeologist Jodi Magness and 3D IMAX Movie, 'Jerusalem'"

Jodi Magness interview by WNCNBROADCAST TV INTERVIEW
Archaeologist and UNC Religion Professor, Dr. Jodi Magness, discusses her recent finds and the 3D IMAX Movie, Jerusalem, now playing at Marbles Kids Museum.

Herald Sun
"Chapel Hill's Harrison Ford and Indiana Jones"

Chapel Hill's Harrison Ford and Indiana Jones - Jodi MagnessWhen she was a little girl, Jodi Magness did not dream of growing up to be a movie star. From the time she was in the seventh grade, she says she dreamed of being an archaeologist.

Whos talking
"Who's Talking"
Jodi Magness interviewed about her archaeological excavations in Greece and Israel, especially findings at Huqoq, including discovery of stunning mosaics on an ancient synagogue's floor and her important role in the unique National Geographic IMAX film about Jerusalem.
USE CONTROLS BELOW
TO PLAY INTERVIEW

Be certain the volume control to the right of the "speaker" icon in the control bar is moved to the right to turn up the volume.

IF AN AUDIO PLAYER CONTROL BAR DOES NOT APPEAR ABOVE THIS LINE OF TEXT, CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE CURRENT VERSION OF FIREFOX, WHICH PLAYS THIS INTERVIEW FLAWLESSLY.

 "MORE THAN MOSAICS"

Endeavors - University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill - UNC

Samson Mosaic - HuqoqUNC archaeologist Jodi Magness takes on a long-held theory about how Jews and early Christians coexisted.

THE LEDE FROM THE UNC WEBSITE HOMEPAGE OCTOBER 5, 2013

On location photo by Jim Haberman

"JERUSALEM" IMAX FROM NBC NEWS

"Why Jerusalem still hangs onto ancient archaeological mysteries"

Alan Boyle, Science Editor, NBCNews.com/science
September 20, 2013

NBC News - Jodi Magness - Jerusalem IMAX

"It's a living city, and it's a city that's been inhabited continuously for thousands of years,"Jodi Magness told NBC News. Unless, God forbid, the city is ever completely abandoned, we'll never get a complete picture."
The Jerusalem Temple

"Magness is one of the scientific stars of a new movie titled "Jerusalem." The movie, (which opened the week of September 16), takes advantage of IMAX 3-D technology to produce an ultra-big-screen vision of the city, its history and its people."

 

"JERUSALEM" IMAX FROM GASTON GAZETTE, HALIFAX MEDIA:

Andrea Honaker, Lifestyles Reporter, Gaston Gazette, October 19, 2013 -
September 20, 2013


Gaston Gazette - Jodi Magness Jerusalem

New IMAX film offers unique perspectives on holy city

"Jerusalem is one of the most beloved and holy cities in the world... So, what exactly is it that draws people from all over to Jerusalem? A new film provides a unique perspective on the sacred city's past, present and future. "

The Jerusalem Temple"(The film) follows three young women of three different faiths who live in the city: Farah Ammouri, a Muslim; Nadia Tadros, a Christian; and Revital Zacharie, a Jew. Also featured in the film is archaeologist Dr. Jodi Magness, During a recent phone interview, The Gazette talked to Magness about the film and her involvement in it.

Magness' path to Jerusalem: The city has been a part of her life since she was a teen. At age 16, she moved to Jerusalem, where...

IN THE HUFFINGTON POST - SEPTEMBER 1, 2013
Jodi Magness - Huqoq Synagogue Mosaic - Elephant
"It has absolutely no parallels in any other synagogue at all," Magness told HuffPost.
"And there are no elephants in the Hebrew Bible."

Ancient Samson Mosaic Uncovered In Israeli Synagogue; Beautiful Art Fascinates Scholars (See PHOTOS CLICK HERE)

Jodi Magness - Huqoq Synagogue Mosaic - ElephantAnother mosaic unearthed by the archaeologists is also fascinating, albeit because of its dearth of Biblical context. With its colorful elephants and humans, the artwork appears to be apocryphal (or unrelated to the Bible) -- an extremely unusual find in a religious building.

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ARCHAEOLOGICAL WORK
Huqoq is an ancient Jewish village near Migdal, the hometown of Mary Magdalene, and close to Capernaum, the center of Jesus' Galilean ministry. In June 2011, Dr. Magness began a new dig at Huqoq, which had never before been excavated.

Click the following links to see information about each season:

2011 Season 2012 Season 2013 Season

APPLY TO WORK ON THE0 2014 HUQOQ EXCAVATIONS...
AN EXPERIENCE OF A LIFETIME.
CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE APPLICATION.


Biblical Archaeology Review - BAR - Scholar's Update: New Mosaics from the Huqoq Synagogue

THE "DIG HUQOQ" PROJECT has great potential for shedding light on the world of Jesus, the beginnings of early Christianity, and the emergence of rabbinic Judaism. If you cannot become an "on-site digger", here's how to get into the excitement.

Huqoq Mosaic - Samson Carrying the Gate

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Click here for coverage of the Huqoq discoveries in the Jewish Press.

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Huqoq News 2012 Season Reveals Spectacular Mosaics

Hebrew or Aramaic inscription in the Huqoq mosaic flanked by female faces

Here's an example of how the mosaic findings are intriguing people around the US and the world. This article includes an interview with Jodi Magness and raises a topic that most lay-people do not consider when the excitement and beauty of the mosaics seem to be an end in and of their own... and as Jodi Magness points out, the find raises even more work to be accomplished and support to be found.

Magness explained that, while it is very exciting, it also will change the way funds must be raised in order to retain scholarship opportunities for students and pay for her colleagues and herself.

“We now need to deal with conservation and preservation of the site, with the ultimate goal of opening the finds to the public either by moving them to a museum or making the site a national park. Either way, we are in need of much additional funding, and any assistance is appreciated.”

Huqoq News 2011 Season Reveals Synagogue

Jodi Magness uncovers the synagogue

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Educational Pleasure

Dr. Magness became a professor for the enjoyment of both teaching and learning. Students apply for her courses and dig volunteer opportunities for the same reasons. Sometimes, however, the pleasure one receives by learning from Dr. Magness is a great secret finally revealed:

On 2/2/2012 10:43 AM, John McGraw wrote: Dr. Magness, Just a brief note to tell you how much I'm enjoying your Teaching Company series.  I'm an orthopaedic surgeon from Knoxville, TN serving in Afghanistan. Between the occasional periods of chaos are long stretches of quiet...and watching your series. Your effort has been therapeutic for me here in a lonely and otherwise dark part of the world.  I hope to hear you lecture in person some day. John J. McGraw, M.D.  Colonel, US Army Reserve, Medical Corp
Click here for information about this Series by Dr. Magness.

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USA TODAY - JESUS JAMES OSSUARY - DR. JODI MAGNESS INTERVIEWNews of the World - March 19, 2012
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USA Today - Jesus James Ossuary - Dr. Jodi Magness quoted

To read this article in USA TODAY online version, click here.