Prof. dr. Jürgen Zangenberg

  • Researcher
  • New Testament

Telephone number: +31 (0)71 527 2579
Faculty / Department: Faculteit der Geesteswetenschappen, Institute for History, Oude Geschiedenis
Office Address: Johan Huizingagebouw
Doelensteeg 16
2311 VL Leiden
Room number 1.34
Telephone number: +31 (0)71 527 2579
Faculty / Department: Faculteit der Geesteswetenschappen, Centre for the Arts in Society, Griekse T&C
Office Address: Johan Huizingagebouw
Doelensteeg 16
2311 VL Leiden
Room number 1.34


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Research on the New Testament has to open up new perspectives on an “old”, long-studied text. New insights can best be gained by “contextualizing the New Testament”, i.e. by reading it on the basis of a comprehensive approach to its original literary, religious, social and material environment within early Judaism and the ancient world. Currently, the Gospels of Matthew and John are in my particular focus.

In addition, the question of how to correlate texts and material culture in order to reconstruct ancient Jewish and early Christian life is of pivotal interest to me. I follow this topic in several different fields: ancient Jewish and Christian burial culture, Galilean village culture, the Samaritans and Qumran in the context of the Dead Sea region.

Since 2007, archaeological explorations at the Hellenistic-Byzantine village site of Horvat Kur and its surroundings have especially been the focus of my research. In cooperation with colleagues from Leiden University Faculty of Archaeology and an international team of colleagues and volunteers under the auspices of Kinneret Regional Project ( new data are produced and interpreted about the development of rural Galilee at the time of Second Temple and Rabbinic Judaism and Early Christianity.

Curriculum Vitae

  • Between September 2008 and August 2010: Academic Director of Leiden Institute of Religious Studies (term ended August 31, 2010)

  • Since September 2008: additional appointment as Professor of Archaeology at the Faculty of Archaeology at Leiden University

  • Since 09/2006: Professor for New Testament Exegesis and Early Christian Literature at Leiden University

  • 2005-2006/7: Researcher for New Testament at Tilburg University

  • 2003: Habilitation and Venia Legendi for New Testament Studies in Wuppertal

  • 2000-2001: Humboldt Fellow and Visiting Assistant Professor at Yale University

  • 1996-2004: Wissenschaftlicher Assistent for New Testament Studies in Wuppertal

  • 1996: Ph.D. in New Testament Studies in Heidelberg

  • 1983-1990: Study of Evangelische Theologie in Erlangen, Heidelberg and Edinburgh/Scotland including courses in Judaic Studies and classics in Heidelberg and Edinburgh

  • 18-01-1964: Born in Erlangen, Germany

Other activities

  • Member of Societas Novi Testamenti Studiorum, Studiorum Novi Testamenti Conventus, NOSTER, Wissenschaftliche Gesellschaft für Theologie, Society of Biblical Literature, American Schools of Oriental Research, European Association for Biblical Studies, Deutscher Verein zur Erforschung Palästinas.
  • Extensive archaeological training and fieldwork as member of excavation teams to Callirhoe/Jordan (1986, German Protestant Institute of Archaeology in the Holy Land), Petra/Jordan (1992, Naturhistorische Gesellschaft Nuremberg) as volunteer.
  • Staff member with responsibility in teaching, fieldwork and publication in excavations teams to Sepphoris/Israel (1993-1994 and 1996-1997, Prof. Dr. Eric M. Meyers), Tel Kinrot/ Israel (1994, 1998 Prof. Dr. Volkmar Fritz).
  • Co-director of Kinneret Regional Project since 2001 (
  • Director of the excavations at Horvat Kur, a sub-project of Kinnret Regional Project, since 2007, in 2010 discovery of a Byzantine Synagogue together with colleagues from Bern and Helsinki.

Last Modified: 01-02-2016