Yes, the Torah Cares About Reality

Why Archeology is Kosher

April 1, 2014

I find it frustrating discussing the renewal of Jewish practices, like the wearing of t’cheleth, with those who would seriously posit that halacha does not take Archeology into consideration. This is a fallacious argument, as Archeology is merely a word we coined to describe discovering evidence, whereas to them it represents a system of beliefs, with a sinister Latin name, that must be at heads with Torah methodology.

  • R’Schachter has always pointed out that the Talmud uses archaeological evidence in deciding the law. The Gemara says that although one can acquire whatever is on his property merely by stating a claim, a qinyan hatzer, there is a case where one can enter the domain of another, and unearth a buried treasure and claim it as his own, and the other, the owner of the domain, has no claim, as the antiquity  and location of the treasure indicate that he had no foreknowledge of its presence. To the sages, the circumstances indicate that “the Emorites left it.”

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From Avraham Ben Yehuda, here.

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