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The Jezreel Team

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The Jezreel Expedition is sponsored by the University of Evansville and

the Zinman Institute of Archaeology at the University of Haifa;

with consortium members

the University of Arizona, Chapman University,

Vanderbilt University and Villanova University.

The Expedition is directed by

Norma Franklin (University of Haifa) and Jennie Ebeling (University of Evansville)


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Why Jezreel?

jezreel perched above where the jezreel valley meets the harod valley

We are returning to Jezreel because it is an amazing site with a long history that reflects the rich cultural heritage of the area

Perched on the foothills of the Gilboa mountain range it commands an unparelled view over the valley below. The famous sentry site of Megiddo, Biblical Armageddon, lies 15 kms to the west and to the east the renowned city of Bet Shean (Scythopolis).

The fertile Jezreel and Harod valleys, with their copious springs, provided ideal conditions for both agriculture and grazing. It was these ideal conditions that ensured that Jezreel (greater Jezreel) was continously occupied from the earliest times until the present day.

Due to Jezreel's prominent place in the Biblical narrative it is the Iron Age city that has prompted the most intense investigation. The dominant Iron Age feature at Jezreel was a 289 by 157 rectangular, casemate walled, compound that enclosed an area of ca 45 dunam which was surrounded on at least three sides (or possibly four) by a rock-cut trench ca 8 to 12 meters wide and ca 6.5 meters deep.


The compound was attributed to the Omride dynasty ca 880 BCE, based primarily on the Biblical narrative. It was noted that few structural changes were made to the compound and the excavators surmised that the Jezreel compound must have fallen into disuse a relatively short time after its construction. Based on this scenario they attributed the demise of the compound to Jehu’s revolt in 842 BCE. This position was later modified by Nadav Na’aman and the end of the compound is now more commonly associated with Hazael and the Aramaeans in the latter part of the 9th c BCE.


Welcome to Jezreel

Jezreel was first excavated between the years 1990 and 1996 by David Ussishkin on behalf of Tel Aviv University and John Woodhead on behalf of the British School of Archaeology. Less than twenty years have passed since the last expedition to Jezreel but archaeology has moved on. The excavation of nearby Tel Megiddo, particularly the Iron Age levels, has provided new insights into the social and military structure of the northern Kingdom of Israel.


Bibliography: Archaeological and Biblical Articles

 Ben-Tor, A. 2000

Hazor and the Chronology of Northern Israel: A Reply to Israel Finklestein. Bulletin of the American Schools of

Oriental Research No. 317 :9-15

Bradley, M. 2006

The Medieval Christian Cemetery at Tel Jezreel. Levant, Volume 38: 33-35(3)


Jezreel in the Hebrew Bible

The Book of Kings weaves a dramatic story around Jezreel; involving Ahab, Jezebel and Naboth; Jehu, Joram and Ahaziah. 

Joshua 17:16 The tribe of Joseph said, "The hill country is not enough for us; yet all the Canaanites who live in the plain have chariots of iron, both those in Beth-shean and its villages and those in the Valley of Jezreel."


Jezreel and Josephus -- Antiquities of the Jews

Antiquities of the Jews 8:346

So he came to the city of Jezreel; and in a little time the air was all obscured, and covered with clouds, and a vehement storm of wind came upon the earth, and with it a great deal of rain; and the prophet was under a divine fury, and ran along with the king's chariot to Jezreel, a city of Izar. {d} [Issachar?]


2013 UE excavation team

University of Evansville Director of Digital Media Joe Atkinson made this 3-minute video about the UE student experience at Jezreel 2013.

(The students from Vanderbilt, Chapman, Yale, UNC Charlotte, British Columbia, and University of Toronto also had a great time even though they dont appear on this particular video)


The Jezreel Excavation Season 2014

will place from Sunday 18th May to Friday 20th June

There will be a full academic program with on-site tuiton, lectures and field trips.

New this season!

A mid-season study tour of archaeological sites in nearby Jordan led by Dr Ebeling and expedition staff.

Credits are available

Undergraduate credits from the University of Evansville

Graduate credits from the University of Haifa

Once again we are guests of Kibbutz Yizre’el which is adjacent to the dig site. Our buildings have full A/C and WiFi. 
Three meals a day, swimming pool, laundry service and a great atmosphere

Two week, mini-sessions, are also available depending on space.

Preference is given to students and consortium members.

For more information write to

Dr Norma Franklin - This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Check back here and also the Jezreel Expedition Facebook page for updates.

Registration forms are available online:-
Program Summary
Students Contact: Dr. Jennie Ebeling and apply online
Non-students Contact Dr. Norma Franklin for pre-registration



The Jezreel Expedition Season 2013

took place between 19th May and the 15th June. Go to the link below for the report.

Preliminary Report of the 2013 Jezreel Expedition Field Season -  click for report





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Who are we?

The Jezreel Expedition is a multi-national team intent on exploring the archaeology and history of the site of "greater" Jezreel.

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(+972) 0522291664