“… misled by their stern belief in textbook chronology archaeologists have, time and again, distorted the situation laid bare by excavations to match their pre-conceived dates. Yet, the time to allow stratigraphy its say may be closer than ever”.
In what follows, professor Heinsohn gives great import to the Nabataeans, whose cultural influence, however, appears to have bene negligible.
Thus Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nabataeans
Many examples of graffiti and inscriptions—largely of names and greetings—document the area of Nabataean culture, which extended as far north as the north end of the Dead Sea, and testify to widespread literacy; but except for a few letters no Nabataean literature has survived, nor was any noted in antiquity. Onomastic analysis has suggested that Nabataean culture may have had multiple influences. Classical references to the Nabataeans begin with Diodorus Siculus ….
More promising, I think, would be to substitute Nabataeans with the Hellenistic Greeks of Syria, which thus enables the identification of the enigmatic Umayyads with their neo-Hellenistic architecture, out of fashion for 700 years, in and near Jerusalem in the 8th century.
ARABS OF THE 8th CENTURY: CULTURAL IMITATORS OR ORIGINAL CREATORS?
The revisionist thesis (Gibson 2011) that Muhammad’s Quranic geography is better suited to the Nabataean area around Petra than the area of Mecca and Medina, enables the identification of the enigmatic Umayyads with their neo-Hellenistic architecture, out of fashion for 700 years, in and near Jerusalem in the 8th century.
|By employing (with Tiberias as an example) the stratigraphy-based approach to the 1st millennium CE, early Christianity, early Islam as well as Rabbinical Tanakh-Judaism all develop side by side in the 1st/2nd c. CE, i.e. 8th/9th c. CE stratigraphically. They emerge in the competition for finding the most appropriate way to lead a righteous Jewish life. JEWISH EVIDENCE
of 1st millennium CE TIBERIAS confirms the contemporaneity of its major periods in the time-span of the 8th-10th c. CE: Between 1 and the 930s CE there are only some 230 years with stratigraphy! [from Heinsohn 2018]
II Are Nabataean and Umayyad art styles really 700 years apart?
So, who was capable to place 15 m deep cement foundations under Jerusalem’s Umayyad palaces in front of the Temple Hill? Whose Arabic realm was located close enough to the Holy City to [build] … there in such a massive way? Who were the Arabs well known for alliances with [?]
Eventually, the Israeli scholars decided to invoke a geological miracle to obey Christian chronology and, at the same time, make sense of the stratigraphy of Tiberias. That mover of a higher order was identified as a mega-earthquake of 749 CE [AD] afflicting all the lands from Damascus to Egypt. With surgical precision that [disaster] … had pushed the 1st c. BCE … Roman material upwards until it stopped precisely at the Umayyad level of the 7th/8th c. ff. CE. The Arab material, however, was kept in its position in such a wondrous manner that the Roman material was neither allowed to stop inappropriately below nor to move inappropriately above the Arab material believed to have arrived some 700 years later.
Yet, all the stratigraphic evidence does really show (for the period preceding the catastrophe that drowned the 2nd/3rd. c. CE Roman theatre of Tiberias) is the contemporaneity of 7th/8th ff. c. CE Arabs and 1st c. BCE to 2nd c. CE Romans. Thus, Early Medieval Umayyads followed as directly after Late Hellenisms (=Late Roman Republic = Late Latène of the 1st c. BCE) as Roman Imperial Antiquity (1st-3rd c. CE). However, misled by their stern belief in textbook chronology archaeologists have, time and again, distorted the situation laid bare by excavations to match their pre-conceived dates. Yet, the time to allow stratigraphy its say may be closer than ever.
A recent example for such fresh openness is provided by Bet Yerah on the southern tip of Lake Kinnereth. For decades, a large fortified enclosure on this site … was misidentified as a synagogue from Byzantine Late Antiquity (4th-6th c.). Yet fresh excavations completed in 2013 point to the Umayyad qasr (castrum) of al-Sinnabra from the Early Middle Ages (8th-10th c.). That fortress cuts through the site’s Hellenistic walls whose period is dated some 700 years earlier. Even the name of the place, Al-Sinnabra or Sinn en-Nabra (Umayyad Arabic), is still the same as in Hellenistic times (700 years earlier) when it was known as Sennabris (Greek):
“Post-Hellenistic presence on Tel Bet Yeraḥ was quite limited in extent and did not produce massive deposits. Early excavators reported Roman remains, but virtually nothing of this period can be identified in the remaining collections. Byzantine occupation appears to be limited to the church excavated and published by Delougaz and Haines” (Greenberg/Tal/Da’adli 2017, 1).
700-year period have long been seen by art historians (e.g., Avi-Jonah 1942). Indeed, there are “close relations between the art of Ahnas and the Nabataean sculptural school reflected at Khirbat et Tannur. Despite the time gap between the sites, this affinity cannot be fortuitous” (Talgam 2004,100). ….