Why Jezreel?

  • In 2013, the Jezreel Expedition broke ground in its first excavation season. Click the photo to watch a video about the dig!
  • Click photo to learn more about the 2012, 2013 and 2014 Jezreel Expedition seasons.
  • Meet the members of our multinational team intent on exploring the archaeology and history of greater Jezreel.

wineryVatJezreel is a remarkable site with a long and fascinating history.

Perched on the foothills of the Gilboa mountain range in Israel’s lower Galilee, Jezreel commands an unparalleled view of the fertile Jezreel Valley at its narrowest point. Located on the ancient international highway the Via Maris (the biblical ‘Way of the Sea’), midway between Megiddo (biblical Armageddon) and Bet Shean (Scythopolis), Jezreel acted as a sentry controlling its junction with the mountain route (the biblical ‘Way of the Patriachs’) that leads to Samaria and on to Jerusalem. It is no wonder that Jezreel features prominently in the biblical narrative as the site of Naboth’s vineyard (1 Kings 21) and Queen Jezebel’s gruesome death (2 Kings 9). 

In 2012, the Jezreel Expedition conducted an aerial LiDAR (light detection and ranging) scan of greater Jezreel as well as a traditional foot survey. During our first two excavation seasons in 2013 and 2014, the Jezreel team unearthed remains dating to the Neolithic, Chalcolithic, Early Bronze, Middle Bronze, Iron Age, Roman, Medieval, and Islamic periods, and revealed a new site – a lower tel – situated directly above the spring ‘Ein Jezreel. 

The Jezreel Expedition is sponsored by the Zinman Institute of Archaeology, University of Haifa and the University of Evansville in Indiana. Our archaeological field school is certified by the Register of Professional Archaeologists and the Jezreel Expedition is affiliated with the American Schools of Oriental Research. We are grateful to our consortium partners – Chapman University, University of Arizona, Vanderbilt University, Villanova University, Wesley Theological Seminary, and Moravian Theological Seminary – for their support. 

The Jezreel Expedition is featured in the 2016 Dig Issue of Biblical Archaeology Review!