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This volume guides readers through the world of the Bible, the land where the decisive religious experiences of the ancient Israelites and the earliest Christians took place. One cannot understand Judaism or Christianity without knowing not only the history and culture but also the geography of the biblical lands. Here the authors bring together the fruits of contemporary historical and archaeological research to introduce the writings, events, and, most important the land of the Bible. The Land and the Book provides an overview of the geography and the history of the Bible by the use of brief descriptions of each of the major areas in which the events of the biblical narrative took place ( primarily Palestine, Egypt, and Syria) and reviews of the history of ancient Israel, beginning with the patriachs and continuing through the New Testament era and the crusader period to the present. Extensive archaeological and historical descriptions set the stage for a more thorough understanding of the biblical drama by detailing the natural environment of a site; the human artifacts, buildings, and structures discovered there; and the manner in which all illuminate the biblical material * Includes charts and descriptions of archaeological periods, a chronological chart of biblical events, and a glossary of terms-- helps the reader better understand the world of the Bible.