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Faculty’s Qumran Institute collaborating in major Drents Museum exhibition on Dead Sea Scrolls

04 March 2013

The Drents Museum, in cooperation with the Israel Antiquities Authority and the University of Groningen, has once again succeeded in bringing an archeological phenomenon of world renown to the Netherlands. From July 9, 2013 till January 5, 2014, the museum in Assen will organize a unique exhibition on the Dead Sea Scrolls. It will be the first time in the Netherlands that an entire exhibition will be dedicated to this famous discovery. The curators of the exhibition are Prof. Dr. Mladen Popović of the Qumran Institute, University of Groningen (faculty of Theology and Religious Studies), and Mrs. Adi Ziv of the Israel Antiquities Authority.

Mladen Popović at Cave 3, where the famous Copper Scroll was found
Mladen Popović at Cave 3, where the famous Copper Scroll was found

The exhibition shows original Biblical manuscripts and objects from the 3rd century BC till the 2nd century C.E. as well as alternative texts which have not been incorporated in the Bible. Fragments from the Dead Sea Scrolls which have never before been shown to the public will be displayed exclusively in Assen. In addition, recently excavated objects from ancient Judea will be shown, from Qumran (the site at which the scrolls were found) as well as from Jerusalem.

The exhibition will place the Dead Sea Scrolls within the cultural and historical context of the Greco-Roman period in which they were written and ultimately hidden during the Jewish revolt against Rome (66 – 70 C.E.). This revolt will be given a great deal of attention, showing unique objects which will feature both the Roman legions and the Jewish rebels. In addition, the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls and the research into the manuscript will be shown by means of films and pictures.

In the Netherlands, the exhibition will be shown exclusively in the Drents Museum. Afterwards, the exhibition will travel to the Schlossmuseum in Linz (Austria). The exhibition will be designed by Kossmann.deJong Exhibition Architects.

The exhibition is in keeping with the policy of the Qumran Institute of the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies, which is to make ground-breaking research accessible to the larger public. Instead of viewing them in isolation, the Dead Sea Scrolls are being studied in the broader cultural context of the ancient world – the Qumran Institute being closely involved in the CRASIS Research Institute. The researchers are also collaborating with their colleagues in Computer Science in order to discover new information about the manuscripts and their authors.

Within the framework of the exhibition, in autumn 2013 the Faculty will be offering a postgraduate course on the Dead Sea Scrolls and early Judaism, given by Prof. Mladen Popović. We will be publishing more information about the course on the Faculty website soon. Prof. Popović can provide private lectures in the Drents Museum on request. For more information, please write to boekingen .

The Qumran Institute is grateful to the private sponsors supporting its ground-breaking research. The Ubbo Emmius Fund, the benefit fund of the University of Groningen, has brought in the support of private and institutional asset funds, alumni and relations of the University of Groningen for this extraordinary research. The Ubbo Emmius Fund’s relations helped conceive the idea of holding this exhibition in the Drents Museum. The Ubbo Emmius Fund wishes to further enhance the leading international role of the Qumran Institute and the University of Groningen in this field. Please visit for more information.

Last modified:18 August 2023 1.55 p.m.
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