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database: Images of the Biblical World Online
database: Images of the Biblical World Online

Images of the Biblical World Online

Archive Benedikt Schwank, Beuron

Images of the Biblical World: The Benedikt Schwank Archive
Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication


About this database

Images of the Biblical World is a collection of hitherto unpublished photographs that documents biblical material culture and at the same time reflects the development of bible-related locations between 1952 and 2004.

• Over 24,000 photographs from biblical places in the Mediterranean world and Southern Europe

• Many pictures document historical settings of excavation sites and buildings which no longer exist today

• All images are indexed by description, place, date of photography, and a geographical index

As a result of industrialization and political alteration the lands of the Bible have undergone remarkable changes in the second half of the 20th century. Also biblical settings and archaeological sites nowadays look completely different from what they were only few decades ago. Thanks to the extensive photographic material by Benedikt Schwank OSB, it is possible to trace and comprehend these changes.

For more than five decades Benedikt Schwank OSB, Professor for New Testament and Biblical Archaeology at the Munich School of Philosophy, travelled across Southern Europe and the Middle East. In his photographic oeuvre he documents excavations, buildings and landscapes as well as a wide range of realia, including plants, animals, scenes from the daily life, and details from objects of sacred art. Many photographs capture historical settings which no longer exist today. Therefore, this collection of pictures provides a unique and valuable glimpse on the biblical world.

The database is a helpful tool for research on the biblical material world and provides an excellent visual aid for presentations, lectures and classroom teaching. With its wide geographical and thematic scope the collection is of interest not only to theologians but also to archaeologists, classicists and art historians. The database offers a variety of search options such as full text, title, place, keyword, date, inventory number; additional information help to contextualize particular photographs.

Your Benefits

  • Comprehensive and illustrative material that can be used for academic courses
  • 24,825 photographs of biblical places in the Mediterranean world (Holy Land, Turkey, Italy, Egypt, Syria etc.) taken between 1952 and 2004
  • Pictures of excavations, buildings, landscapes and realia (plants, animals, scenes from daily life, coins, details from objects of sacred art)
  • Images are indexed by description, place, date of photograph, geographical index
  • Non-restrictive DRM – allows for an unlimited number of simultaneous users campus / institution-wide



Wolfgang Zwickel, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz; Benedikt Schwank, Beuron.

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