During July 2009, a sample salvage excavation was conducted in the Newe Rabin quarter of Or Yehuda (Permit No. A-5710; map ref. 187959-8000/658949-9035), after ancient remains were discovered during preliminary inspections. The excavation, undertaken on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority and underwritten by the Shafir Civil and Marine Engineering Company, Ltd., was directed by J. Marcus, with the assistance of S. Ya‘aqov-Jam (administration), M. Kunin (surveying), A. Peretz (field photography), L. Rauchberger and D. Golan (probe trenches and preparation of area for excavation) and laborers from Kafr Qari.
The excavation area was located c. 50 m west of Highway 412 (Bet Dagan), within the precincts of the Ono antiquities site. Two archaeological excavations (Permit No. A-4880), conducted in 2006 next to the current area, revealed cist tombs and an industrial installation from the Early Islamic period. Other excavations in the region were carried out mostly in the Newe Ephraim quarter (HA-ESI 114:114*).
Four squares were opened; in three of them (A, B, C, each 25 sq m) three cist tombs, a tomb covered with ceramic slabs and another tomb, which was not built, were discovered. The tombs were not excavated in their entirety and were dated to the Early Islamic period based on the ceramic finds collected from the fill above them. No ancient remains were discovered in Square D.
The five tombs discovered represent a variety of types. The two cist tombs (L105, L106) are rectangular (length c. 1.8 m, width c. 0.9 m; Fig. 2) and oriented east–west. The sides of each tomb are built of massive ashlars (average dimensions 0.25×0.70 m).
At least three burial concentrations were discovered in Squares B and C (L107, L108 and L110); as they were not completely excavated, it was impossible to determine their boundaries and manner of construction.
Tomb 107 (0.25×0.80 m) was covered with at least three ceramic slabs (average size 0.25×0.30 m), arranged in a row, oriented east–west (Fig. 3).
Tomb 110 was 1 m north of Tomb 107. It contained bones covered with fragments of a pottery vessel that was partly preserved. The bones were buried in the ground, without a built frame.
Tomb 108 was discovered between Squares B and C and did not possess a definite shape (Fig. 4). A concentration of different size ashlars was exposed. Two of the stones were slabs that had probably been used to cover the tomb.
Other cist tombs of this type that dated to the Early Islamic period had been exposed in previous excavations (Permit No. A-4880), located c. 50 m west of the current excavation area. In all likelihood, another part of the Byzanto-Umayyad cemetery was discovered in the present excavation. Since no remains of other tombs were discovered east of the excavation area, it seems that these tombs constituted the eastern limits of the cemetery during the Byzantine and Umayyad periods.