We have past the 1/2 way mark of the 2012 season and we are now starting the 3rd of our 4 weeks. On friday, we continued excavating and had some very nice finds.
In Area P, what appears to be two “lamp and bowl” deposits were found, apparently in association with an Iron I level not far from the new fortifications. It is not clear whether these fortifications are LB, Iron I, or both and this requires further clarification. These deposits are typical of LB Canaan AND Iron I Philistia and were already found at Safi in the large LB building excavated in Area E a few years ago. These deposits apparently are foundation deposits, most usually found below walls or floors of a building in use.
Here is a picture of Mike from the Area P team beginning to excavate the deposit just after its discovery
In Area F more and more of the Crusader fortification is being uncovered, along with finds from other periods. Then, in the mid-morning, a flight of motorized hang gliders flew over the tell – and it was quite a scene!
Here is one of the hang gliders “buzzing” Area F
And here is a view of some of the hang gliders as they head off to the north west away from the tell!
In other areas we had great finds as well. Notably, in Area D, large portions of a skeleton of a cow were found in the structure (temple?) in which the altar had been found last year and the possibility that this is cultic related find will be closely examined.
The coming week will be quite a scene! In addition to the work in all the various areas, this week we will be conducting a series of geomorphological probes around the tell, with the help of several geomorphologists (led by Oren Ackermann), phytolith experts (Dan Cabanes of Barcelona), OSL dating (Noami Porat of the Israel Geological Survey), pollen experts, and others.
Also, we will be checking out several interesting rock cut features in the vicinity of the tell.
We will also have a group of IDF soldiers joining us for the week – so we will have a enormous team!
And finally, here is a nice picture of the Korean team, led by Dr. MiYoung Im, who all worked in Area D. Since some of the team left on Friday, we took a very nice group picture – and Amit and I joined in with the group.
It’s going to be a great week!