Faculty Profiles

Adam E. Miglio Headshot

Adam E. Miglio, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Archaeology,
Director of M.A. in Old Testament Archaeology

On Faculty since 2009
BGH 542

Dr. Adam E. Miglio is interested in the history and archaeology of the regions from inland Syria and northern Iraq to the southern stretches of Palestine. He has excavated in Turkey, Israel-Palestine, and Kurdish Iraq.

His primary research treats Akkadian texts from the ancient capital city of Mari (Tell Hariri), which was centrally located along the Euphrates River. Mari flourished as a capital under its king Zimri-Lim from 1775–1762 BCE, when Hammu-rabi of Babylon destroyed it. In the ruins left by Hammu-rabi, excavators recovered nearly 20,000 cuneiform tablets, including 2500-3000 diplomatic and other official correspondences.

Currently, he is working on a monograph that addresses the use of rhetoric in the diplomatic letters from Mari. He also is interested in intersections between ancient Mesopotamia and the Hebrew Bible and is working on a book that explores the presentation of ‘the good life’ in the Epic of Gilgamesh and the opening chapters of Genesis.

University of Chicago
Ph.D., Ancient Near Eastern History

University of Chicago
M.A., Syro-Palestinian History

Wheaton College
M.A., Biblical Archaeology

  • Syrian Archaeology
  • Material Culture of the Southern Levant
  • Syro-Palestinian History
  • Ancient Near Eastern History
  • Old Babylonian
  • ARCH 365: Ancient Near Eastern History
  • ARCH 494: Society and Technology in the Ancient Near East
  • ARCH 554: Ancient States: From Babylon to Rome
  • ARCH 494: Economies of the Ancient Mediterranean
  • ARCH 554: Tribes, States and Ancient Israel
  • ARCH 360/550: Aramaic Dialects
  • ARCH 411: Ugaritic Language and Literature
  • ARCH 4/518: Akkadian Language and Literature
  • ARCH 494: Landscapes of the Levant
  • ARCH 550: Classical Hebrew Inscriptions
  • NEHC 213: Statecraft and International Relations in Mesopotamia

My publications include a monograph, Tribe and State: The Dynamics of International Politics and the Reign of Zimri-Lim. Studies in the Ancient Near East. Gorgias Press, 2014. Additionally, I have published articles in several academic journals, including the "Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research," "Journal of Ancient Near Eastern Religions," "Vetus Testamentum," "Cuneiform Digital Library Bulletin," "Journal of Old Testament Studies," and "Journal of Ancient Egyptian Interconnections," among others.

I have written reviews for the "Journal for Near Eastern Studies," "Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research," and "Journal of the American Oriental Society."

I am currently researching a history of ‘unruly’ populations during the Old Babylonian period, which focuses on the letters from Mari as well as other contemporary sources.

Imagery and Analogy in Psalm 58:4-9, Vetus Testamentum, 2015
This article treats the images and logic of Ps 58:4-9. Drawing on Stanley Tambiah’s work on “performative analogies,” it compares the images of serpents and unborn children as well as the ways in which these images are used in Ps 58 with incantations from Syro-Mesopotamia. It focuses on the similarities between Ps 58 and Syro-Mesopotamian incantatory traditions, emphasizing how the latter serves as a catalyst for understanding Ps 58 as a YHWHistic religio-magical expression.
Read "Imagery and Analogy..."

Ur III Tablets in the Wheaton College Archaeology Museum, Cuneiform Digital Library Bulletin, 2014
The Wheaton College Archaeology Museum holds nine tablets from the Ur III period. As is the case with many Ur III collections, the provenience of the tablets is not well documented. The available records about the tablets’ arrival at the Wheaton Archaeology Museum indicate that they were received from private collections in the 1950s and 60s. At the same time, there is no documentation regarding the origins of these tablets prior to their receipt by the museum. Some evidence suggests that three or four of these tablets likely originated from Umma, modern Jokha, whereas the remaining tablets came from Puzrish-Dagan, modern Drehem.

Ur III Tablets in the Wheaton College Archaeology Museum

Scarab-Stamped Impressions and Weaving at Middle Bronze Age Tell Dothan, Journal of Ancient Egyptian Interconnections, 2014
The excavations at Tell Dothan in Palestine, which took place during the middle of the past century, uncovered important remains from the Middle Bronze Age. This article presents previously unpublished artifacts from the courtyard of the "patrician's house" at Tell Dothan. The most significant artifacts from this assemblage are a scarab-stamped jar handle and two scarab-stamped loom weights. In addition to making these objects available for the first time, this article also considers how scarab-stamped loom weights may have functioned at the site.
Read "Scarab-Stamped Impressions and Weaving..."

Epigraphic Artifacts from Tel Dothan, Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research, 2014
This article presents two epigraphic artifacts that were recovered in the 1953-1964 excavations at Tel Dothan: a Hebrew bulla and an Aramaic ostracon. It discusses the dating of these artifacts, their archaeological contexts, and their palaeographic proclivities as well as their historical significance.
Read "Epigraphic Artifacts from Tel Dothan..."

A Study of the Serpent Incantation KTU2 1.82: 1–7 and its Contributions to Ugaritic Mythology and Religion, Journal of Ancient Near Eastern Religions, 2013
This article treats KTU2 1.82: 1–7, an Ugaritic incantation. It deals, first, with matters of epigraphy, philology, morpho-syntax and lexicography. Thereafter, it discusses the contributions of this incantation to understanding Ugaritic mythology and religion. In particular, it assesses the relationship of KTU2 1.82: 1–7 to the Ugaritic Baʕlu Cycle.
Read "A Study of the Serpent Incantation... "