The Production and Trade of Fish as Source of Economic Growth in the First Century ce Galilee

Galilean Economy Reexamined

in Novum Testamentum
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The article challenges the model of economic oppression in Galilee and argues that the development of Galilean fishing industry and trade gave an economic boost to the local economy. There has emerged a significant interest in ancient fishing technologies and fish production in recent classical scholarship. The article uses these discussions, together with recent archaeological findings in Galilee, especially in Magdala, to reconstruct a more accurate and nuanced portrait of the fishing economy in the region. It is argued that the expansion of the Galilean fishing economy opened up new economic possibilities not only for the elite but also for the members of local fishing collectives.

The Production and Trade of Fish as Source of Economic Growth in the First Century ce Galilee

Galilean Economy Reexamined

in Novum Testamentum

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References

2

S. De Luca and A. Lena“Magdala/Taricheae,” in Galilee in the Late Second Temple and Mishnaic Periods Volume 2: The Archaeological Record from Cities Towns and Villages (ed. D.A. Fiensy and J.R. Strange; Minneapolis: Fortress2015) 280-342.

4

De Luca and Lena“The Harbor” 136-139. The continuation of the Roman quay to the northwest has been located in the excavations by the Universidad Anáhuac México Sur and Israel Antiquities Authority see M. Zapata Meza “Neue mexikanische Ausgrabungen in Magdala—das «Magdala Archaeological Project»” in Bauern Fischer und Propheten—Galiläa zur Zeit Jesu (ed. J.K. Zangenberg and J. Schröter; Darmstadt/Mainz: Philipp von Zabern 2012) 85-98 (87 89); D. Avshalom-Gorni and A. Najar “Migdal” Hadashot Arkheologiyot: Excavations and Surveys in Israel 125 (2013) http://www.hadashot-esi.org.il/report_detail_eng.aspx?id=2304&mag_id=120 accessed in November 2016; De Luca and Lena “Magdala/Taricheae” 308.

8

J.K. Zangenberg“Archaeological News from Galilee: Tiberias, Magdala and Rural Galilee,” Early Christianity 1 (2011) 471-484 (476).

9

B. Callegher“E le monete di Magdala ci raccontano che,” Terrasanta 4 (2009) 49; De Luca and Lena “The Harbor” 145.

10

StraboGeogr. 16.2.45: ἡ λίµνη µὲν ταριχείας ἰχθύων ἀστείας παρέχει. The name of the city is derived from the verb ταριχεύω (to preserve meat or fish by salting pickling or smoking) and related words (ἡ ταριχεία a preserving salting; in pl. αἱ ταριχεῖαι factories for salting fish). For detailed discussions of the literary references to Taricheae and the idenfication of Taricheae with Magdala see U. Leibner Settlement and History in Hellenistic Roman and Byzantine Galilee: An Archaeological Survey of the Eastern Galilee (tsaj 127; Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck 2009) 217-221; De Luca and Lena “The Harbor” 280-291.

11

Cf. Pliny the ElderNat. 9.48.

13

Avshalom-Gorni and Najar“Migdal” (for the vats see Fig. 6). The vats are associated with the production of fish also by De Luca and Lena “Magdala/Taricheae” 309; R. Bauckham and S. De Luca “Magdala As We Now Know It” Early Christianity 6 (2015) 91-118 (112).

14

A. MarzanoHarvesting the Sea: The Exploitation of Marine Resources in the Roman Mediterranean (Oxford: Oxford University Press2013) 102-110.

15

See A. Trakadas“The Archaeological Evidence for Fish Processing in the Western Mediterranean,” in Ancient Fishing and Fish Processing in the Black Sea Region (ed. T. Bekker-Nielsen; Aarhus: Aarhus University Press2005) 47-82 (56-57); J.M. Højte “The Archaeological Evidence for Fish Processing in the Black Sea Region” in Ancient Fishing and Fish Processing 133-160 (142-148); A. Wilson “Fishy Business: Roman Exploitation of Marine Resources” jra 19 (2006) 525-537 (527); “Fish-Salting Workshops in Sabratha” in Congreso Internacional Cetariae 2005: Salsas y Salazones de pescado en occidente durante la antigüedad (ed. L. Lagóstena D. Bernal and A. Arévalo; baris 1686; Oxford: Archaeopress 2007) 173-181; Ellis “The Rise” 61-67; Marzano Harvesting 98-102.

17

Wilson“Fish-Salting Workshops” 173-181; Marzano Harvesting 98-99.

18

Ellis“The Rise” 61-67. The vats were in use from the second half of the second century bce to the last years of the first century bce.

19

Wilson“Fishy Business” 527. For example a Byzantine edict (Hexabiblos 2.4.22) tries to restrict the manufacture of garum and cheese within a city.

20

Ellis“The Rise” 80.

21

R.I. CurtisGarum and Salsamenta: Production and Commerce in Materia Medica (Studies in Ancient Medicine 3; Brill: Leiden1991) 151.

22

Thus CurtisGarum148-152; “Sources for Production and Trade of Greek and Roman Processed Fish” in Ancient Fishing and Fish Processing in the Black Sea Region (ed. T. Bekker-Nielsen; Aarhus: Aarhus University Press 2005) 31-46 (37); Marzano Harvesting 116-117.

23

Ellis“The Rise” 68.

25

Cf. Pliny the ElderNat. 31.43.

26

MarzanoHarvesting90-95.

28

D. Kraemer“Food, Eating, and Meals,” in The Oxford Handbook of Jewish Daily Life in Roman Palestine (ed. C. Hezser; Oxford: Oxford University Press2010) 403-419 (409-411). See also J.D. Rosenblum Food and Identity in Early Rabbinic Judaism (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press 2010) 185-192.

29

J. Lev-Tov“ ‘Upon What Meat Doth This Our Caesar Feed . . .?’ A Dietary Perspective on Hellenistic and Roman Influence in Palestine,” in Zeichen aus Text und Stein: Studien auf dem Weg zu einer Archäologie des Neuen Testaments (ed. S. Alkier and J. Zangenberg; Texte und Arbeiten zum neutestamentlichen Zeitalter 42; Tübingen: Francke2003) 420-446 (432).

32

A. Fradkin“Long-Distance Trade in the Lower Galilee: New Evidence from Sepphoris,” in Archaeology and the Galilee: Texts and Contexts in the Greco-Roman and Byzantine Periods (ed. D.R. Edwards and C.T. McCollough; Atlanta, Georgia: Scholars Press1997) 107-115.

33

J. Lepiksaar“Fish Remains from Tell Hesban, Jordan,” in Faunal Remains: Taphonomical and Zooarchaeological Studies of the Animal Remains from Tell Hesban and Vicinity (ed. Ø.S. LaBianca and A. von den Driesch; Hesban 13; Berrien Springs: Andrews University Press1995) 169-210 (173-175 188-192).

36

MarzanoHarvesting38-50.

40

For the inscription see Lytle“Marine Fisheries” 76-78; Marzano Harvesting 42-43. Marzano comments that the inscription possibly but not certainly dates to the first century bce.

47

Cf. P. Ørsted“Salt, Fish and the Sea in the Roman Empire,” in Meals in a Social Context: Aspects of the Communal Meal in the Hellenistic and Roman World (ed. I. Nielsen and H. Sigismund Nielsen; Aarhus: Aarhus University Press1998) 13-35 (19). Ørsted says that is was a communis opinio among earlier scholars that fishing was the monopoly of the state.

48

See Ørsted“Salt” 20; E. Lytle “Ἡ θάλασσα κοινή: Fishermen the Sea and the Limits of Ancient Greek Regulatory Reach” ClAnt 31 (2012) 1-55 (8-9); Marzano Harvesting 241.

50

Cf. Lytle“Fishermen” 21.

52

MarzanoHarvesting252-266.

57

Thus De Luca and Lena“The Harbor” 116.

59

Lytle“Fish Lists” 275; “A Customs House of Our Own: Infrastructure Duties and a Joint Association of Fishermen and Fishmongers (ik 11.1a-Ephesos 20)” in Tout vendre tout acheter; Structures et équipements des marchés antiques: Actes du colloque d’Athènes 16-19 juin 2009 (ed. V. Chankowski and P. Karvonis; Scripta antiqua 42; Bordeaux: Ausonius/Athens: Ècole française d’Athènes 2012) 213-224 (217-218); Marzano Harvesting 243.

61

Thus e. g. Hanson“The Galilean Fishing Economy” 103.

62

Lytle“A Customs House” 220. Thus also Marzano Harvesting 245.

63

F. Udoh“Taxation and Other Sources of Government Income in the Galilee of Herod and Antipas,” in Galilee in the Late Second Temple and Mishnaic Periods Volume 1: Life Culture and Society (ed. D.A. Fiensy and J.R. Strange; Minneapolis: Fortress2014) 366-387 (380).

64

B. Callegher“Note su un peso fenicio in piombo da Magdala,” Quaderni Ticinesi di Numismatica e di Antichità Classiche 37 (2008) 321; S. De Luca “La città ellenistico-romana di Magdala /Tarichaee. Gli scavi del Magdala Project 2007 e 2008: Relazione preliminare e prospettive di indagine” sbfla 59 (2009) 343-562 (371-372).

66

For the text of the weight see Qedar“Two Lead Weights” 29; Kushnir-Stein “Two Inscribed Lead Weights” 144; M. Sigismund “Small Change? Coins and Weights as a Mirror of Ethnic Religious and Political Identity in First and Second Century c.e. Tiberias” in Religion Ethnicity and Identity in Ancient Galilee: A Region in Transition (ed. J. Zangenberg H.W. Attridge and D.B. Martin; wunt 210; Tübingen: Mohr-Siebeck 2007) 315-336 (332).

69

Qedar“Two Lead Weights” 32-33. For agoranomoi in rabbinic sources see D. Sperber “On the Office of the Agoranomos in Roman Palestine” zdmg 127 (1977) 227-243. For the role of agoranomoi in Roman Palestine markets see B.-Z. Rosenfeld and J. Manirav Markets and Marketing in Roman Palestine (JSJSup 99 Leiden: Brill 2005) 160-163.

70

Bekker-Nielsen“The One That Got Away” 126-127. Cf. Philo Spec. 4.193: “Again those who handle weights and scales and measures merchants pedlars and retailers and all others who sell goods to sustain life solid or liquid are no doubt subject to market-controllers” (ἀγορανόµοι; translated by F. H. Colson in lcl).

71

MarzanoHarvesting281.

72

Lytle“Fish Lists” 253-303. Two Hellenistic fish lists dated to the late third century bce have been found in the Boiotian town Akraiphia and in Delphi.

73

Lytle“Fish Lists” 290. Thus also Marzano Harvesting 283-284.

75

Lytle“Fish Lists” 289; Marzano Harvesting 282.

76

Cf. ApuleiusMetam. 1.25-26 referred to by Bekker-Nielsen “The One That Got Away” 125-126.

77

S.L. Mattila“Revisiting Jesus’ Capernaum: A Village of Only Subsistence-Level Fishers and Farmers,” in The Galilean Economy in the Time of Jesus (ed. D.A. Fiensy and R.K. Hawkins; sblecl 11; Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature 2013) 75-138; “Capernaum Village of Nahum from Hellenistic to Byzantine Times” in Galilee in the Late Second Temple and Mishnaic Periods Volume 2: The Archaeological Record from Cities Towns and Villages(ed. D.A. Fiensy and J.R. Strange; Minneapolis: Fortress2015) 217-257.

78

Thus also J. ZangenbergMagdala am See Gennesaret: Überlegungen zur sogenannten “mini-sinagoga” und einige andere Beobachtungen zum kulturellen Profil des Ortes in neutestamentlichen Zeit (Waltrop: Hartmut Spenner2001) 61-62; J.S. Kloppenborg “Q Bethsaida Khorazin and Capernaum” in Q In Context Vol. ii: Social Setting and Archaeological Background of the Sayings Source (ed. M. Tiwald; bbb 173; Bonn/Göttingen: Bonn University Press/Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht 2015) 61-90 (86-88).

79

Cf. D.R. Edwards“Identity and Social Location in Roman Galilean Villages,” in Religion Ethnicity and Identity in Ancient Galilee: A Region in Transition (ed. J. Zangenberg H.W. Attridge and D.B. Martin; wunt 210; Tübingen: Mohr-Siebeck 2007) 357-374; S.L. Mattila “Inner Village Life in Galilee: A Diverse and Complex Phenomenon” in Galilee in the Late Second Temple and Mishnaic Periods Volume 1: Life Culture and Society(ed. D.A. Fiensy and J.R. Strange; Minneapolis: Fortress2014) 312-345.

81

A. Wilson“The Economic Influence of Developments in Maritime Technology in Antiquity,” in Maritime Technology in the Ancient Economy: Ship-Design and Navigation (ed. W.V. Harris and K. Iara; JRASup 84; Portsmouth Rhode Island: jra 2011) 211-233.

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