Chicago Oriental Institute

Highlights from Wednesday, September 26


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Indiana Jones could have been inspired by James Henry Breasted and Nachliel Selavan.

Breasted was a professor, archaeological, and antiquities dealer in the late 1800’s who coined the term, the ”Fertile Crescent”. As World War I wound down, he secured a $50,000 gift from John D. Rockefeller Jr. to enable Breasted to buy some of the most amazing historical near eastern artifacts. He is the man who first gave history a recognized place in science.

Selavan has developed a unique and engaging method of learning Torah and bringing the text to life through tour, travel and archaeology.

Todd Cohn

Executive Director Southern NCSY

Shalom Nachliel,
I wanted to thank you again for a very, very informative, and enjoyable tour!
You not only described the artifacts in their historical context, but allowed us to concretely envision the challenges that our Avot (forefathers) faced, starting with Avraham Avinu, through the destruction of Bayit Rishon (First Temple).
Your themes were very well chosen, and flowed from one to another, giving us a very vivid picture of the Tanachic world in less than two hours!
Your tour should be obligatory for all Jewish high school classes, particularly those who are up to Sefer Melachim (Book of Kings), and have already learned the previous books of Neviim Rishonim (Early Prophets).
What an excellent way to imprint the Tanach on children’s minds!
In addition, all shuls really should offer such a tour to their members. Many now have an ongoing Tanach shiur. This should be a part of any such program.
Yishar Kochacha!
Chag Sameach!

Annette Frankenthal