‘Atiqot 59 (2008)
Burial Caves of the Intermediate Bronze Age (Early Bronze Age IV) at Hanita
(Hebrew, pp. 1*–10*; English summary, pp. 193–194)
Eli Yannai and Arieh Rochman-Halperin
Keywords: burial goods, weapons
In 1969, several burial caves from the Intermediate Bronze Age were exposed at Kibbutz Hanita. The description of the caves was lost; however, their content, including thirteen complete pottery vessels, metal objects and jewelry, was recovered. These finds resemble other assemblages from burial caves in the western Galilee, such as those from Hanita, Nahf and Kabri.
A Middle Bronze Age IIA–B Tomb at Bet She’an
(Hebrew, pp. 11*–20*; English summary, pp. 195–196)
Keywords: burial, weapons, anthropology
The tomb, uncovered beneath the Bet She’an Youth Hostel, was hewn from the local travertine. At least four individuals were interred in the cave, each with their associated burial goods—pottery vessels and metal artifacts. The finds date from the end of Middle Bronze Age IIA to the transition to Middle Bronze Age IIB. It seems that the tomb served the population of a nearby settlement located about 800 m from Tel Bet She’an.
Caves from the Iron Age and the Early Roman Period at ‘Ein el-Luza, Jerusalem
(Hebrew, pp. 21*–35*; English summary, p. 197)
Zvi Greenhut and Zubir ‘Adawi
Keywords: City of David, cemetery, inscription
Three caves were discovered south of the confluence of the Hinom and Kidron Valleys in Jerusalem. Two natural caves (Caves 1, 3) contained Iron Age II pottery and human bones and the third (Cave 2), a hewn burial cave, was dated to the Early Roman period. Cave 1 yielded an Iron Age pottery assemblage dating between the eighth and the beginning of the sixth centuries BCE that included tableware (bowls, jars and juglets) and cooking pots typically found in burial caves. As the cave is natural, it is possible that its contents were dumped there following the evacuation of a nearby burial cave during the Second Temple period—a practice known to have occurred in this area of Jerusalem.
A Hebrew Seal from Bet Shemesh and Another of Unknown Provenance in the Israel Antiquities Authority Collection
Keywords: glyptics, epigraphy, Iron Age
Two seals in the Israel Antiquities Authority collections, which were considered unreadable, were found to be inscribed in ancient Hebrew script. One was discovered in the excavations directed by Mackenzie at Bet Shemesh, the other is of unknown provenance. Both seals are of a popular design, bearing the names of their owner and his father, probably dating to the eighth century BCE.
Excavations at Horbat Malta, Lower Galilee
Keywords: Tiglath Pileser III, economy, farmstead, agricultural hinterland
Excavations at Horbat Malta, located in the Nazareth Hills, exposed evidence of occupation dating to Middle Bronze Age II (potsherds), Iron Age II and the Persian and Roman periods. The Iron II occupation included a massive fortification wall and many rock-hewn installations, including channels, grinding and pounding stones and possibly, winepresses (Area A), as well as a four-room house (Area C). The Iron Age settlement reveals intra-site planning, familiar from other contemporary sites in the central hill region. The architectural elements of the Persian period are chiefly of a domestic nature, including stone buildings, numerous rock-hewn installations (Area B), pits and a nearby tomb (Area C). The excavations at Horbat Malta revealed a rural settlement-system that prevailed during the Iron Age and Persian period.
Petrographic Analysis of the Persian-Period Pottery from Horbat Malta
Keywords: trade, Phoenician Coast
Twenty-six samples of Persian-period wares from the Horbat Malta excavations were studied. The pottery was divided into four petrographic groups: two groups point to the local production of amphorae, storage jars and cooking pots; the other two, to middle- and long-range imports. The middle-range imports are represented by two oil lamps, a jug and possibly a krater, and the long-range import is represented by a mortaria.
Results of Three Small Excavations at Nahf, Upper Galilee
Keywords: Western Galilee, Christianity
The village of Nahf is located north of Karmi’el, on the lower southern slope of the Mount Meron Massif. The three areas excavated revealed occupational levels from Early Bronze Age IB, Early Bronze Age II, Middle Bronze Age II, Iron Age I–II and the Persian period. Large quantities of Hellenistic-period potsherds, including many storage vessels and a stamped Rhodian amphora handle, point to the site’s important role as a commercial center for the production of oil and wine during this period. The Hellenistic settlement ceased to exist during the second half of the second century BCE, probably following the Hasmonean conquest of the Galilee. During the second or third century CE, the site was resettled by a Jewish population, featuring Kefar Hananya ceramic types. The village continued, and apparently prospered, during the Late-Roman–early Byzantine periods.
Late Roman–Early Byzantine Burial Caves at Shelomi
Keywords: burial, necropolis, dolphin pendant, cross
Four burial caves, hewn in soft limestone, were discovered southwest of Shelomi in the northern Galilee. They all consist of one chamber surrounded by single and double loculi (
). The richest finds were recovered from Cave 2, and include bronze coins, glass vessels, jewelry and an iron blade, dating to the late third–late fourth centuries CE. The caves probably served the population of nearby Horbat Kenessiyya, a relatively large site from the Roman–Byzantine periods. This population was probably pagan during the Roman period and converted to Christianity in the fourth century CE.
A Burial Cave from the Fourth Century CE at Elqosh, Upper Galilee
Keywords: burial, necropolis
The excavation at Moshav Elqosh revealed a burial cave featuring vaulted chambers with burial troughs. Finds in the cave included pottery oil lamps, glass vessels, coins and jewelry items—all dating to the fourth century CE. One coin was found wrapped in linen cloth. The coin finds probably reflect the pagan practice of paying Charon to cross the river Styx to the netherworld. The absence of pottery further points to a pagan Phoenician population.
The Coins from Elqosh
Gabriela Bijovsky and Helena Sokolov
Keywords: numismatics, Byzantine period
Seven coins were discovered in the burial cave at Elqosh. Six of them were identified, dating to the fourth century CE.
Khirbat el-Hawarit: A Ceramic Workshop on the Mount Hermon Slopes
Moshe Hartal, Nicholas Hudson and Andrea M. Berlin
Keywords: Gaulanitis, Galilee, economy, pottery colonies
A large mound of pottery sherds was exposed on the northern slope of the hill on which Khirbat el-Hawarit is located. Excavation of the mound revealed that it contained the debris of a workshop: vessels broken during the firing process, kiln ash and bricks. Although only fragmentary walls were unearthed, precluding the reconstruction of any building, the dump in itself is sufficient to identify the site as the main pottery production center of Mount Hermon, Banias and the northern Golan region during the Late Roman–Byzantine periods. Two distinct wares were found: Golan ware (late Hellenistic–late Byzantine periods) and Khirbat el-Hawarit cooking ware (early third–mid-fifth centuries CE). A third ware, termed Banias ware, was also found. The operation of these production centers and their cessation strongly reflect the political shifting in the area.
Elemental and Petrographic Analyses of Local and Imported Ceramics from Crusader Acre
S. Yona Waksman, Edna J. Stern, Irina Segal, Naomi Porat and Joseph Yellin
Keywords: Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem, Acre bowls, Levantine ceramics, Beirut, Byzantine ceramics, Zeuxippus Ware, chemical analysis, petrographic analysis, Crusader period
The aim of the research presented in this report was to precisely obtain information concerning the origin of pottery types common in Crusader Acre. Thus, laboratory analyses, both elemental and petrographic, were applied on a fairly extensive number of samples, focusing on two broad ceramic categories: wares typical of Levantine sites of the Crusader period and wares belonging to the Zeuxippus Family. This study enabled us to distinguish between a ‘prototype’ and ‘derived’ or related productions—an important step in the attempt to prevent confusion within the Zeuxippus Family.
A Burial Cave from the Late Roman and Mamluk Periods at ‘Ar‘ara
(Hebrew, pp. 37*–46*; English summary, pp. 198–199)
Keywords: cemetery, anthropology, beads, bone artifacts, numismatics
The cave, hewn in soft chalk bedrock on the western slopes of the ‘Iron Hills, was used for burial in two separate periods, the Late Roman and the Mamluk. During the Late Roman period, the cave comprised a forecourt, originally sealed by a roll stone, and a burial chamber with burial troughs carved in three of its walls. Each trough contained the skeleton of one individual accompanied by burial gifts, including pottery vessels, Samaritan oil lamps, glass vessels and jewelry. The Mamluk phase included the remains of forty individuals that seem to have been hastily discarded there, perhaps due to a contagious disease. The burial goods from this phase included jewelry, knives, coin pendants and a glass plaque.
Glass Vessels from the Burial Cave at ‘Ar‘ara
(Hebrew, pp. 47*–50*; English summary, p. 200)
Ruth E. Jackson-Tal
Keywords: cemetery, burial goods, jewelry
Twenty well-preserved glass items were retrieved from the two burial phases in the burial cave at ‘Ar‘ara. Among the artifacts from the Late Roman period were candlestick-type bottles, jars, beads and bracelets; one bead was made of gold-glass. The glass finds from the Mamluk period included a plaque and a bracelet.
Human Skeletal Remains from the Burial Cave at ‘Ar‘ara
(Hebrew, pp. 51*–60*; English summary, p. 201)
Yossi Nagar and Vered Eshed
Keywords: anthropology, pathology, tumor, trauma
The bones, which were found scattered above an alluvium fill in the cave, were well preserved. They represent at least forty individuals, the majority of which were adult males. Many of the bones manifested an inflammatory disease, which would account for the burial manner and the absence of children under the age of ten.
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