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Abstract

Across the Levant “libation installations” have been identified at numerous ancient archaeological sites. This paper examines these claims in light of both the surrounding material remains and the surviving texts of the region that mention libations of wine and water. It shows that libation, the ritual pouring out of a liquid offering to a god, in ancient Syria-Palestine did not require a receptacle for successful completion of the act. Rather, the category “libation installation” exists not because of solid evidence but to fulfill the needs of modern scholars and any such claim must be carefully scrutinized before being accepted.

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