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“What Archaeology Tells Us About the Ancient History of Eating Kosher” Article Summary

The respective article reflects upon the archeological excavations and intriguing research of Yonatan Adler and Omri Lernau based upon fish remains by their speeches on their respective work to pay tribute to their retiring colleague. Adler explicates the Jewish ritual bath “mikveh” in his speech. Lernau explicates the fish remains of catfish, skate, and shark (Non-Kosher food) which were found in Judean settlements in the speech. Adler is interested in Lernau’s archaeological research because of the reason of finding the remains of non-kosher fishes in the ancient Judean settlements. The Judean settlements follow strict dietary rules which are stated under Jewish laws written in the Torah (Holy book of Judeans). Adler and Lernau agree to research together on the reason for finding non-kosher fish remains found in Judean settlements. Both archaeologists worked together and published their research in the journal “Tel Aviv”. According to their findings of the collaborated research, the Judean civilization did not follow the Jewish Kosher rules in the first millennium (BC) of their reign.

The Judean residents particularly ate a lot of catfish (non-kosher). Adler and Lernau’s research paves the way for other archeologists and scientists to envisage the cultural evolvement of Judean norms and values. The exact time is not certain in which Judean citizens adapted to their kosher dietary rules and lifestyle recommended in Torah. Adler is working on the “Origins of Judaism Archaeological Project” to investigate their dietary principles by going through their garbage remains. Adler could not find any written scripture or text because these people were illiterate. Therefore, the main source of his research was Judean garbage remain and the vast collection of fish remains collected by Lernau. Lida Sapir-hen (archaeozoologist) also studied Judean dietary principles and concluded that Judeans were not following the laws of Kashrut (kosher food). It was concluded that the kingdom of Israel started to follow its dietary laws after the 8th century. Adler and Lernau are hopeful that their research will encourage other archaeologists to research fish bones from ancient trash. (Zeldovich, n.d.)


In our modern world, archaeology plays a significant role in connecting our present circumstances to the ancient civilizations and their regime. The respective article plays a significant role in reflecting upon the dietary principles of Judean civilizations and how Judean citizens were not following these rules. As far as the structure is concerned, the article does not contain any headings which make it difficult for the reader to comprehend and analyze the article. The article contains explanatory details and factual details backed up by in-text quotes from the archaeologists. However, this decreases the interest of the reader to read such a lengthy article without headings and coherent order. The explicatory details are delivered blandly. The article contains one picture to make it look attractive and grab the attention of the reader. However, the overall structure of the article and the details are in incoherent order.

As far as the content and subject of the article are concerned, the archeological research on the dietary rules of the Judean settlement is very unique. Lernau and Adler’s archaeological research on fish remains from Judean trash is a unique topic to discuss. Lernau and Adler collaborate and find the reason behind Judeans eating non-kosher food. This subject provides new ways for people and researchers to analyze the ancient culture through their garbage remains. The article reflects upon the astounding findings of Judeans eating non-kosher food despite the strict laws of Kashrut. It paves the way for other archaeologists to research the fish remains to analyze the dietary principles of the ancient civilizations.


Zeldovich, L. (n.d.). What Archaeology Tells Us About the Ancient History of Eating Kosher. Smithsonian Magazine. Retrieved July 8, 2021, from



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