"On the walls of buildings . . . on leather and papyrus, Israelites living under the monarchy (1000-587 B.C.E.) penned or scratched texts ranging from food and crop inventories . . . to memorials. . . . Smelik . . . (has compiled these) remnants of early writing . . . in light of their historical, social, and biblical contexts".--Douglas A. Knight, Vanderbilt University.