Goliath: The Proof; Is This Inscription Evidence That the Ultimate Giantkilling Act Really Happened?

Article excerpt

Byline: JULIE WHELDON

GENERATIONS have drawn inspiration from the story of David and Goliath.

Now archaeologists have made a discovery that lends credence to the Bible tale of how a shepherd boy armed with only a slingshot slew the feared giant.

While digging in what is thought to have been the giant's home city, they have uncovered a shard of pottery bearing an inscription remarkably similar to the name 'Goliath'.

The 21/2 long piece of pottery - thought to be from a 6-8 inch diameter bowl - dates from 950BC.

This puts it within 50 to 100 years of when biblical chronology claims David squared up to Goliath. It also makes it the oldest Philistine inscription ever found.

Excavation director Professor Aren Maeir, of the Bar-Ilan University in Israel, said the find does not provide definitive proof that the 9ft giant existed.

But it is the first clear evidence outside the Bible that the story may be more than a legend. It also supports the Bible's depiction of life at the time the battle was supposed to have occurred.

'What this means is that at the time there were people there named Goliath,' he said.

'It shows us that David and Goliath's story reflects the cultural reality of the time.' The pottery was found at Tel es-Safi, a dig site in southern Israel. This is thought to have been the location of the Philistine city of Gath - Goliath's home according to the Bible.

The Philistines are believed to have come to Israel in around 1200 BC bringing their own culture and language. …