Prof. Oren Tal (born 1968) received his Ph.D. in archaeology from Tel Aviv University in 2002. His post-doctoral research stay was carried out in Berlin (Deutsches Archäologisches Institut) and London (Institute of Classical Studies) in 2003 and 2004. He taught in the University of Haifa and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in 2005 and 2006, respectively. Since 2007 he has worked for Tel Aviv University, where he teaches classical Near Eastern archaeology in the Jacob M. Alkow Department of Archaeology and Ancient Near Eastern Cultures. Tal has served as the Chair of the Department (in 2010-2013) and he is the current Director of the Apollonia-Arsuf Excavation Project (since 2007). His current research interests are the social, political and economic implications of the material culture of the Ancient Near East in the first millennium BCE to the early second millennium CE. Tal is also engaged in the study of the early indigenous southern Levantine coinages and the development of monetary economy in the Levant, as well as in ancient technologies. He is the author of Archaeology of Hellenistic Palestine, Jerusalem: Bialik Institute (in Hebrew, 2006; rev. 2nd electronic ed. 2009), and the co-author of Coinage of Philistia, Milan: Ennerre (2006) and Samaritan Cemeteries and Tombs in the Central Coastal Plain, Münster: Ugarit-Verlag (2015), as well as the final excavation reports of Apollonia-Arsuf (1999), ‘En Boqeq (2000), Ramla (South) (2008) and Tell Qudadi (2015). In addition, Tal has authored numerous scientific articles especially on the archaeology of Palestine (Ancient Israel) and the ancient Near East in the late Iron Age, classical and early medieval periods.


Higher Education

B.A. - Tel Aviv University, 1993
M.A. - Tel Aviv University, 1996
Ph.D. - Tel Aviv University, 2002
Ph.D. Dissertation: Aspects of the Study of the Material Culture of Hellenistic - Ptolemaic and Seleucid - Palestine
Post-Doctoral research visits - Deutsches Archäologisches Institut (DAI), Zentrale, Berlin; Institut für Klassische Archäologie, Freie Universität, Berlin; Institute of Classical Studies (ICS), School of Advanced Study, University of London, 2002-2004

Academic Position

Senior Lecturer, Tel Aviv University, 2007-2010
Associate Professor, Tel Aviv University, 2010-2013
Full Professor, Tel Aviv University, 2013-

Archaeological Field Work

Educational excavation at Tel Hadar and Mitcham Levi'a (Golan Heights), and Yavneh-Yam, 1991-1992
Area Supervisor, Yavneh-Yam and Apollonia-Arsuf excavations, 1992-1996
Archaeological Survey of Roman Roads in Palestine, under B. Isaac and I. Roll, 1992-1996
Director of rescue excavations at Herzliya Beth, 1995
Director of rescue excavations at Tel Hamid (Lower Terrace), 1995-1996
Director of the Parod and Beersheba (Galilee) survey and excavation, 1997
Co-Director of rescue excavations at Rishon LeZion (West), 1999
Director of rescue excavations at Ramla (South), 2005-2007
Director of the Apollonia-Arsuf Excavation Project, 2007-

Area of Research Specialization

Near Eastern, Classical and Medieval Archaeology

Ongoing Projects



Fantalkin, A. and Tal, O. In Press / 2015. Tell Qudadi: An Iron Age IIB Fortress on the Central Mediterranean Coast of Israel (with References to Earlier and Later Periods). Colloquia Antiqua 15. Leuven: Peeters Publishers.

Tal, O. and Taxel, I. 2015. Samaritan Cemeteries and Tombs in the Central Coastal Plain: Archaeology and History of the Samaritan Settlement outside Samaria (ca. 300–700 CE). Ägypten und Altes Testament 82. Münster: Ugarit-Verlag.

Tal, O. and Taxel, I. 2008. Ramla (South): An Early Islamic Industrial Site and Remains of Previous Periods. Salvage Excavation Reports 5. Tel Aviv: Tel Aviv University, Institute of Archaeology.

Tal, O. 2006. The Archaeology of Hellenistic Palestine: Between Tradition and Renewal. Jerusalem: Bialik Institute. (Hebrew).

Tal, O. 2009. The Archaeology of Hellenistic Palestine: Between Tradition and Renewal (Revised 2nd edition/electronic edition). Jerusalem: Bialik Institute. (Hebrew).

Gitler, H. and Tal, O. 2006. The Coinage of Philistia of the Fifth and Fourth Centuries BC: A Study of the Earliest Coins of Palestine. Collezioni Numismatiche 6. Milan: Ennerre.

Fischer, M., Gichon, M. and Tal, O. 2000. 'En Boqeq: Excavations in an Oasis on the Dead Sea. Volume II: The Officina - An Early Roman Building on the Dead Sea Shore. Mainz: Philipp von Zabern.

Roll, I. and Tal, O. 1999. Apollonia-Arsuf: Final Report of the Excavations. Volume I: The Persian and Hellenistic Periods (with Appendices on the Chalcolithic and Iron Age II Remains). Tel Aviv University, Monograph Series of the Institute of Archaeology 16. Tel Aviv.

Books Edited

Tal, O. 2011. The Last Supper at Apollonia: The Final Days of the Crusader Castle in Herzliya. Tel Aviv: Eretz Israel Museum (Bi-lingual Hebrew/English).

Roll, I., Tal, O. and Winter, M. 2007. The Encounter of Crusaders and Muslims in Palestine as Reflected in Arsuf, Sayyiduna 'Ali and Other Coastal Sites. Tel Aviv: Hakibbutz HaMeuchad. (Hebrew).

Selected Articles

Freestone, I. C., Jackson-Tal, R. E., Taxel, I. and Tal, O. 2015. Glass Production at an Early Islamic Workshop in Tel Aviv. Journal of Archaeological Science 62: 45-54. [DOI: 10.1016/j.jas.2015.07.003]

Tal, O. 2015. A Bilingual Greek-Samaritan Inscription from Apollonia-Arsuf/Sozousa: Yet More Evidence of the Use of εἷς θεὸς μόνος Formula Inscriptions among the SamaritansZeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik 194: 169-175.

Ashkenazi, D., Taxel, I. and Tal, O. 2015. Archeometallurgical Characterization of Late Roman- and Byzantine-period Samaritan Magical Objects and Jewelry Made of Copper Alloys. Materials Characterization 102: 195-208.

Tal, O. and Teixeira Bastos, M. 2015. More on the Intentionally Broken Discus Lamps from Roman Palestine: Mutilation and Its Symbolic Meaning. In: Blömer, M., Lichtenberger, A. and Raja, R., eds. Religious Identities in the Levant from Alexander to Muhammed: Continuity and Change. Contextualizing the Sacred 4. Turnhout: Brepols. Pp. 345-368.

Tal, O. 2014. A Late Fourth/Early Third Century BCE Farmstead at Ḥolot Rishon Le-Zion (South), Israel: Evidence for an Unrecorded Military Clash in the Southern Levant? Archäologischer Anzeiger 2014/2: 37-57.

Gitler, H. and Tal, O. 2014. More Than Meets the Eye: Athenian Owls and the Chronology of Southern Palestinian Coinages of the Persian Period. Israel Numismatic Research 9: 15-27.

Tal, O. and Taxel, I. 2014. Samaritan Burial Customs Outside Samaria: Evidence from Late Roman and Byzantine Cemeteries in the Southern Sharon Plain. Zeitschrift des Deutschen Palästina-Vereins 130/2: 155-180.

Gitler, H. and Tal, O. 2014. A Hoard of Tyrian and Athenian Coins from Dalton, Israel. In: Lemaire, A. ed. Phéniciens d’Orient et d’Occident: Mélanges Josette Elayi. Cahiers de l’Institut du Proche-Orient ancien du Collège de France. Paris: Maisonneuve. Pp. 243-249.

Sapir-Hen, L., Pines, M. and Tal, O. 2014. Animal Economy and Social Diversity in Byzantine Apollonia/Sozousa. Levant 46/3: 371-381.

Tal, O. 2013. Aspects in the Study of the Coins and Mints of Palestine during the Persian and Early Hellenistic Periods. Cathedra 150: 23-36. (Hebrew).

Tal, O., Taxel, I. and Jackson-Tal, R. 2013. Khirbet al-Ḥadra: More On Refuse Disposal Practices in Early Islamic Palestine and Their Socio-Economic Implications. Strata: The Bulletin of the Anglo-Israel Archaeological Society 31: 117-148.

Tal, O., Kool, R. and Baidoun, I. 2013. A Hoard Twice Buried? Fatimid Gold from Thirteenth Century Crusader Arsur (Apollonia-Arsuf). Numismatic Chronicle 173: 261-292.

Ayalon, E., Tal, O. and Yehuda, L. 2013. A Twelfth Century Oil Press Complex at the Crusader Town of Arsur (Apollonia) and the Olive Oil Industry in the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem. Journal of Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology and Heritage Studies 1/4: 259-291.

Jackson-Tal, R.-E. and Tal, O. 2013. Crusader Glass in Context: The Destruction of Arsur (Apollonia-Arsuf, Israel), April 1265. Journal of Glass Study 55: 85-100.

Ashkenazi, D., Fischer, M., Stern, A. and Tal, O. 2013. Technology of an Ancient Ship Brazier: A Unique Example from the Southern Levant. Skyllis 12/1: 85-93.

Ashkenazi, D., Golan, O. and Tal, O. 2013. An Archaeometallurgical Study of 13th-Century Arrowheads and Bolts from the Crusader Castle of Arsuf/ArsurArchaeometry 55/2: 235-257.

Tal, O. 2012. Greek Coinages of Palestine. In: Metcalf, W. E. ed. The Oxford Handbook of Greek and Roman Coinage. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Pp. 252-274.

Fantalkin, A. and Tal, O. 2012. Judah and Its Neighbors in the Fourth Century BCE: A Time of Major Transformations. In: Unsok Ro, J. ed. From Judah to Judaea: Socio-Economic Structures and Processes in the Persian Period. Hebrew Bible Monographs 43. Sheffield: Sheffield Phoenix Press. Pp. 133-196.

Tal, O. 2012. A Portable Sundial from Apollonia-Arsuf RevisitedSemitica et Classica [formerly Semitica] 5: 245-248.

Gitler, H. and Tal, O. 2012. Some Notes on the Relative Chronology of the Fifth- and Fourth-Century BCE Coinage of Philistia. Israel Numismatic Research 7: 7-15.

Tal, O. and Teixeira Bastos, M. 2012. Intentionally Broken Discus Lamps from Roman Apollonia: A New InterpretationTel Aviv 39/1: 105-115.

Fantalkin, A. and Tal, O. 2012. The Canonization of the Pentateuch: When and Why? Zeitschrift für die Alttestamentliche Wissenschaft 124/1 (Part I): 1-18; 124/2 (Part II): 201-212.

Tal, O. and Taxel, I. 2012. Socio-Political and Economic Aspects of Refuse Disposal in Late Byzantine and Early Islamic Palestine. In: Matthews, R., Curtis, J., et al. eds. Proceedings of the 7th International Congress on the Archaeology of the Ancient Near East, 12-16, April 2010. Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz GmbH & Co. Pp. 497-518.

Ashkenazi, D., Iddan, N. and Tal, O. 2012. Archaeometallurgical Characterization of Hellenistic Metal Objects: The Contribution of the Bronze Objects from Rishon Le-Zion (Israel)Archaeometry 54/3: 528-548.

Tal, O. 2011. 'Hellenistic Foundations' in Palestine. In: Grabbe, L.L. and Lipschits, O. eds. Judah between East and West: The Transition from Persian to Greek Rule (ca. 400-200 BCE). Library of Second Temple Studies 75. New York and London: T&T Clark. Pp. 242-254.

Ponting, M., Gitler, H. and Tal, O. 2011. Who Minted Those Owls? Metallurgical Analyses of Athenian-styled Tetradrachms Found in IsraelRevue Belge de Numismatique et de Sigillographie 157: 117-134.

Tal, O. 2011. Negotiating Identity in an International Context under Achaemenid Rule: The Indigenous Persian-period Coinages of Palestine as an Allegory. In: Lipschits, O., Knoppers, G. N. and Oeming, M. eds. The Judeans in the Achaemenid Age: Negotiating Identity in an International Context. Winona Lake: Eisenbrauns. Pp. 445-459.

Tal, O. and Taxel, I. 2010. A Re-appraisal of the Archaeological Findings at Tel Hashash: On the Archaeology of the Yarqon Estuary from Classical Times to Late AntiquityPalestine Exploration Quarterly 142: 95-126.

Tal, O. and Baidoun, I. 2010. A Hoard of Mamluk, Ottoman and Venetian Coins (Fifteenth to Sixteenth Centuries) from Apollonia-Arsuf, IsraelNumismatic Chronicle 170: 484-493.

Fantalkin, A. and Tal, O. 2010. Reassessing the Date of the Beginning of the Grey Series Transport Amphorae from LesbosBABESCH: Annual Papers on Mediterranean Archaeology%C


Academic Awards, Honors and Prizes (internal grants are excluded):

2012-2016: Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) - “Research Grants” (GZ: SCHO 520/14-1; GZ: SCHO 520/14-2) for Die kreuzfahrerzeitliche Stadt Apollonia/Arsur in Israel: Struktur - Kulturadaption - Stadt-Umland-Beziehungen (with B. Scholkmann, University of Tübingen)

2013-2014: The Israel Institute for Advanced Studies (IIAS) at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem; Collaborative Research Group: Contextualizing the Cult of the Southern Levant in the Greco-Roman Period: Monotheism and Polytheism between Continuity and Change (09/2013-06/2014; co-initiator/organizer (with Z. Weiss, Hebrew University of Jerusalem; http://www.as.huji.ac.il/research_groups)

2012-2014: Israel Science Foundation (ISF) - Personal Research Grant

2011: Eretz Israel Museum temporary exhibition: The Last Supper at Apollonia: The Final Days of the Crusader Castle in Herzliya (May-September 2011)

2010-: Sub-awards in the frame of academic collaboration with the Israel Nature and Parks Authority, Israel Museum, Jerusalem and the Israel Antiquities Authority

2009-2010: Sub-award in the frame of academic collaboration with Brown University in National Science Foundation (NSF) Funded Research Project: III-CXT-Core Large: Computer Vision Research: Promoting Paradigm Shifts in Archaeology (Grant #0808718)

2009: “2009 Ish Shalom Award” - Yad Izhak Ben-Zvi (for an outstanding “first-fruit” monograph on the research of the history of the Land of Israel of a young scholar: The Archaeology of Hellenistic Palestine: Between Tradition and Renewal, Jerusalem: The Bialik Institute)

2009: German-Israeli Foundation (GIF) - Young Scientists’ Program - “Research Grant”

2007: “2007 Kindler Award” - Israel Numismatic Society (for an outstanding numismatic monograph: The Coinage of Philistia of the Fifth and Fourth Centuries BC: A Study of the Earliest Coins of Palestine, Collezioni Numismatiche 6, Milan: Ennerre (co-authored with H. Gitler)

2004-2006: The Shelby White-Leon Levy Program for Archaeological Publications - “Research Grants” (with A. Fantalkin)

2004-2006: The Mediterranean Archaeological Trust - “Research Grant” (with A. Fantalkin)

Doctoral and Post-doctoral Fellowships:

2003-2004: “Rothschild (post-doctoral) Fellowship” - Yad HaNadiv

2002-2004: “Minerva (post-doctoral) Fellowship” - Max-Planck-Gesellschaft / Minerva Stiftung

1998-2000: “Rotenstreich Fellowship” (doctoral fellowship) - Israeli Council for Higher Education

1998: “Pinchas and Shendel Wald Award” (doctoral fellowship) - The Zalman Shazar Center for Jewish History (Jerusalem)

Research Students

M.A. Students

Lee Perry, 2011. The Route Network and Sites in Southern Palestine between the Rule of Alexander Jannaeus (104 BCE) and the Foundation of Provincia Arabia (106 CE) as a Case-study for the Understanding of Judaean-Nabataean Interactions (co-supervisor - M. Fischer).

Marcio Teixeira Bastos, 2011. Early Christianization in Roman Palestine: The Case of Apollonia-Arsuf (co-supervisor - M.I.D.A. Fleming [University of Sao Paulo]).

Ido Gordin, 2013. The Architectural Origins of the Crusader Castle of Arsur (Apollonia-Arsuf) (co-supervisor - A.J. Boas [University of Haifa]).

Eriola Jakoel, 2013. Tombs and Burials in Jaffa (Joppa) during the Roman Period (1st Century BCE – 4th Century CE).

Reuven Vunsh, 2014. East Mediterranean Late Holocene Relative Sea-Level Changes Based on Archaeological Indicators from the Coast of Israel (co-supervisor - D. Sivan [University of Haifa]).

Itai El'ad, 2015. A Late Roman-Byzantine Villa in the Territory of Apollonia/Sozousa.

Miriam Pines, 2015. Crusader Diet: Arsur (Apollonia-Arsuf) as a Case Study in War and Peace (co-supervisor - L. Sapir-Hen).

Mati Johananoff, in preparation. Hellenistic Bronze Coins from Side (Pamphylia) in the Southern Levant (co-supervisors - A. Fantalkin and D. T. Ariel [IAA]).

Talila Rudin, in preparation. Roman-Byzantine Cemeteries and Tombs around Apollonia/Sozousa: The New Discoveries.

Nicolas Bennestein, in preparation. The ‘Yeroucham Fort’: A Site of the Roman and Byzantine Periods in the Northern Negev Highlands.

Ph.D. Students

Meir Edrey, 2015. Phoenicians in the Eastern Mediterranean under Achaemenid and Greek Rule: Social and Cultural Perspectives in Light of Archaeological Research (Universitaet Mainz, co-supervisors - R. Buhl, W. Zwickel).

Dan Mirkin, in preparation. Inter-relations between Land and Sea during the Crusader Period: Handling of Marine Cargo, Humans and Animals in the Southern Levant during the 11th-13th Centuries (co-supervisor - Y. Kahanov [University of Haifa]).

Rafael Netzer, in preparation. Hellenistic Maresha/Marisa: Food Production of the Agricultural Territory versus Food Consumption of the Local Population. An Attempt to Develop an Eco-Agricultural Archaeological Model.

Academic Host of Foreign Ph.D. Students

Fabio Porzia, in preparation. The Progressive Jewish Identity during the Hellenistic Period (Pontificio Istituto Biblico, Rome) [In the frame of a research scholarship for the academic year 2012-2013 at Tel Aviv University from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Cultural & Scientific Affairs Department]

Marcio Texeira Bastos, in preparation. The Analysis and Spatial Distribution of Roman Provincial Discus Lamps: The Case of Palestine and North Africa (Universidade de São Paulo) [In the frame of a research scholarship for the academic year 2012-2013 at Tel Aviv University from Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo]

Post-Doctoral Students

Rafael Lewis, 2013-2014. The Survey of the Battle of Arsuf and the Field Camps of the Crusades (Academic Secretariat, Tel Aviv University).

Itamar Taxel, 2012-2015. The Archaeology and History of the Samaritan Settlement outside Samaria (ca. 150-800 CE) (Israel Science Foundation-funded project) / The Apollonia-Arsuf [Nof-Yam] Excavation Project (Israel Antiquities Authority-funded project).

Elisabeth Yehuda, 2012-2015. The Crusader Town of Apollonia/Arsur (Israel): Structure - Cultural Adaptation - Urban-Rural Relations (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft-funded project).


Last updated: 22.08.2015