Last of day of digging – great finds and a lot of visitors!

Today was the last day of digging for this season, and we now enter the final days of cleaning (and cleaning and cleaning), and then final ground and aerial photos. Even in this last day we had some great finds, to wrap up the season.

In Area D, more and more sections of the fortification and gate are being uncovered, and it’s getting more impressive as we go along. The more we look at the area and its environs – the larger these features appear to be! In addition, in Area D, we had some other cool finds. Apparently, the metallugical area is not only in the 9th cent. destruction level – but may start earlier as well! And today, we may have found nice evidence of bronze working which until now was relatively minimal – most of the evidence until now related to Iron smelting. Several complete vessels were found in various parts of D – just a nice way to finish up the area…

In Area E, the team cleaned along the possible fortification wall to the east and on the slope below the area itself and a very nice section of this wall can be seen. I hope that in the future we will be able to excavate and date this feature – and perhaps prove that it dates to the EB. In addition, the GPR survey of the area to the east of Area E was completed.

In Area A, they finished working in the 9th cent. destruction and finds came out until the very end.

In P the team has nicely defined several sections of the EB wall, as well as the LB layers on the inside of the wall.

The F team has now very nicely demonstrated the impressive pre-EB fortification stages in two places. Also, we now have 3 clear LB levels coming up – both relating to the fortification wall. I hope that next year we will have great contexts of the earlier stages of the LB.

We also has quite a few visitors today. This included: Ami Mazar, Nava Panitz Cohen, Amotz Agnon and Ron Shaar of HU; Ayelet Gilboa and Paula Weimann-Barak of U of Haifa; Bob Mullins of Asuza Pacific University; Baruch Brandl of the IAA; Pierre de Miroschedji, Simone and Christian of the CNRS/Yarmuth team; Shelley Wachsmann of Texas A&M; Iosi Bordowicz of the RATAG; Hananya Hizmi and a group from the Archaeological Staff Officer offices; Shawn Zelig Aster of BIU; Alisa Maeir (my sister) and her friend from Jerusalem, etc.

What was very nice about these visits is that all of these people were very impressed with the excavations, and in particular, with the fortifications and possible gate in Area D. This means that it’s just not our private fantasy but is quite convincing!

We then went on a team tour of Azeka, and Yuval Gadot showed us the very interesting new finds from the site.

Great day!