Iron Age II Pottery Goblet / Chalice, Northern Kingdom of Israel, 8th Century BCE, time of King Omri, father of King Ahab who married Jezebel. On flared foot with splendid traces of pigment remaining on vessel. Small chip & fissures on rim, but intact and otherwise in excellent condition. 6" high x 4 1/4" diameter. Of all Omri's deeds after he became king of Israel, only one item is mentioned in the Bible, which concerns his founding of the city of Samaria. Omri left Tirzah, which had been the royal capital since the reign of Jeroboam the son of Nebat (I Kings, 14:17), and built himself a new capital on land which he bought from Shemer, "the owner of the hill Samaria" (16:24). Samaria remained the capital of the Kingdom of Israel for the rest of its existence. According to Boston University, Iron II (1000-550) witnessed the rise of the states of Judah and Israel in the tenth-ninth century. These small principalities exercise considerable control over their particular regions due in part to the decline of the great powers, Assyria and Egypt, from about 1200 to 900. Beginning in the eighth century and certainly in the seventh century, Assyria reestablishes its authority over the eastern Mediterranean area and exercises almost complete control. The northern state of Israel is obliterated in 722/721 by King Sargon and its inhabitants taken into exile. Judah, left alone, gradually accommodates to Assyrian control, but towards the end of the seventh century it does revolt as the Assyrian empire disintegrated. Judah's freedom was short-lived, however, and eventually snuffed out by the Chaldean kings who conquered Jerusalem and took some of the ruling class into exile to Babylon. During the period of exile in Babylon, the area, particularly from Jerusalem south, shows a mark decline. Other areas just north of Jerusalem are almost unaffected by the catastrophe that befell Judah.