A salvage excavation was conducted in March 2000 at the Ono site in Or Yehuda (A-3222*; Kafr ‘Ana; map ref. NIG 18737–48/65914–24; OIG 13737–48/15914–24; HA–ESI 114), after antiquities were discovered during construction work. The excavation, on behalf of the Antiquities Authority, was directed by S. Golan, with the assistance of R. Graff (drafting), T. Sagiv (photography), Y. Nagar (physical anthropology), M. Ajami and E. Ayash.
Prior to the excavation two trial trenches were dug at the building site; at a depth of 1 m below surface bones and fragments of pottery vessels were encountered. In the wake of these finds a small excavation area (5 sq m) was opened, revealing remains of several pit graves and a single cist grave, which severed one of the pit graves and therefore postdated it.
The Pit Graves. Two parallel clay-brick walls were exposed along a north–south axis, enclosing a burial of a single adult, who was laid out in articulation (L1). Another adult, 40–50 years of age, was also lying along a north–south direction in articulation to the east of the eastern brick wall. A third adult in a similar position and orientation was below the brick walls. The lower grave was probably destroyed when the upper one was dug. Several ceramic finds dating to the Early Islamic period were found in L1. The remains of another individual (L3) were detected nearby; the grave was completely destroyed when the cist grave was built. Bone fragments of another interred individual were discerned in one of the trial trenches’ sections (L4). An excavation that had previously been conducted by the author in Ramla (HA–ESI 114:68*) uncovered similar pit graves that had no particular order, one atop the other and were devoid of funerary offerings.
The Cist Grave (L2) was built on top of the grave in L3. It was dug into hamra soil, oriented southeast–northwest and was lined with 1–3 courses of dressed limestone (stone dimensions 0.20–0.30 X 0.20–0.35 m); the stone lining on the narrow southwestern side was not preserved. It seems that some of the stone lining was in secondary use, including a circular stone removed from an installation. A rectangular stone (0.18 x 0.33 m) was placed next to the head of the deceased. The grave contained the bones of a woman, 18–25 years of age, laid in articulation with her head facing north; the burial was disturbed at a later date. Similar cist graves, without funerary offerings, were previously excavated in Lod by O. Shmueli (HA–ESI 112:66*–67*).