Public Release: 

13th Mainz International Colloquium on Ancient Hebrew

International conference in early November 2018 will bring together experts to discuss the current status of research into the ancient Hebrew language as well as northwest semitic epigraphy and related subjects

Johannes Gutenberg Universitaet Mainz

The Research Unit on Ancient Hebrew and Epigraphy at the Faculty of Protestant Theology at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in Germany will hold the 13th Mainz International Colloquium on Ancient Hebrew (MICAH) from Friday, 2nd November 2018, to Sunday, 4th November 2018. Academics from around the world are invited to come together and use this forum to discuss new findings and the current status of research relating to the ancient Hebrew language, northwest semitic epigraphy, and related subjects. The colloquium was first organized in Mainz in 1998 (although under another name) by Dr. Reinhard G. Lehmann of the JGU Faculty of Protestant Theology and has since become one of the major academic conventions in the field of ancient Hebrew. It is expected that scholars specializing in the subjects of Old Testament, Semitic, and Ancient Near Eastern Studies as well as historians from many European countries, together with academics from Israel, Canada, the USA and other countries will attend the three-day event and will use the opportunity to exchange information, to present their projects, and to provide new input.

The Mainz International Colloquium on Ancient Hebrew brings together scholars from different subjects and religions, who cover a wide range of research interest, including grammar and linguistics of Ancient and Classical Hebrew (Epigraphic and Biblical Hebrew, Qumran and related Hebrew, and Ben Sira), as well as studies of older or contemporary adjacent Semitic languages and epigraphy, as for instance Ugaritic, Phoenician-Punic, Old and Imperial Aramaic and Early Syriac, Moabite and Edomite and the like in phonetics, lexic, morphology, and syntax.

"The ancient Hebrew of the Bible cannot be adequately understood without knowledge of the various neighboring languages and other historical and language-historical factors," emphasizes Dr. Reinhard G. Lehmann, who is organizing the colloquium together with Professor Dr. Anna Elise Zernecke of Kiel University. "The courses offered at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz thus also cover languages such as ancient Aramaic, Phoenician, and Ugaritic as well as northwest Semitic epigraphy and paleography. The colloquium provides us with the opportunity to discuss these subjects at an international academic level."

As always, the Mainz International Colloquium on Ancient Hebrew will give young scholars the opportunity to present their research to a broader expert audience. This combines with the very friendly and cooperative atmosphere at MICAH, which is provided by the organizers.

Those specializing in these areas can now register at or informally by sending an email to to participate in the conference from November 2, 2018 to November 4, 2018. The conference fee (to cover coffee, water, lunch etc.) is EUR 45 (EUR 30 for students; free for JGU students). For more information and the list of this year's speakers, please visit The finalized program will be available in due time.

Conference languages will be German and English.


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