View Full Version : Newly discovered skeletons in Qumran, Judean Desert

21-11-17, 00:06
Additional skeletons have been unearthed in the Qumran Caves in the West Bank. It's highly likely that these skeletons belong to ancient Jews.


"Extraction and analysis of DNA from the Qumran skeletons would help confirm that they are all, or almost all, men, said Jonathan Rosenbaum, a professor of Jewish Studies at Gratz College in Melrose Park, Penn.

Researchers removed small samples of bone from some of the newly excavated Qumran skeletons before reburying the finds in their original resting places. Nagar wasn’t sure if any attempts to retrieve DNA from bone samples would be launched."

This could be a great opportunity to find the genetic makeup of ancient Judeans. Is there any indication DNA would be extracted from them? Does anybody know who decides whether or not DNA is to be extracted?

21-11-17, 00:21
Do you have a link for that? Why would they rebury them so grave robbers can scavenge and sell the bones?

This link talks about a recent paper on the skeletons from Qumran, but says the bones are all in France, although that may refer to the previous set.


Ah, I found your source. It still makes no sense to me to have reinterred them. They're too valuable.

They've had trouble getting results from the previous set. Warmer climates are much tougher on ancient dna.

The upcoming Shai Carmi and David Reich paper does have a sample from northern Israel around the time of Saul and David so that should be very interesting too.