Area A. Stratum III contained very meager architectural remains. Most of the artifacts in the layer were pottery sherds that were found in the fills, accumulations and habitation levels. Part of a building with foundations dating to the Mamluk period (Stratum II; Fig. 4) was exposed in the east part of the area. Two construction phases were identified in the building. Part of another building was exposed to its west. It consisted of four rooms and a courtyard, in which there was a cistern with a round built-opening. An in-situ tabun was also discovered.
A stone pavement that sealed the Mamluk-period tabun was exposed in Stratum I. Several walls were discovered in the west of the area. Another square-shaped opening made of ashlars was built in the eastern part of the cistern (Fig. 5), which apparently continued to be used into the Ottoman period.
Area B. Several construction phases ascribed to Stratum III were identified. The principal finds in this layer consisted of a number of walls, floors, an installation and underground infrastructures, such as drainage channels and water conduits. The water channels were covered with stone slabs, upon which piles of small fieldstones were placed (Fig. 6). The channels were dug into the sterile, sandy soil.
Three walls and a section of a flagstone pavement belonging to a building were attributed to Stratum II. A tabun that probably belonged to an early phase of the Mamluk period was revealed below the pavement. Several unconnected wall stumps were also part of this stratum. The habitation levels of Stratum II and Stratum III were clearly discernible in the southeast of the area.
Area C. A section of a wall with no floors abutting it was ascribed to Stratum III. A plaster floor was exposed in the northwest of the area, below which a zir pithos was discovered (Fig. 7). A layer of small and medium-sized collapsed fieldstones was discovered. Given the stones’ extreme brittleness and gleaming white color, they were probably exposed to high temperature. The layer of collapse was partly sealed by a burnt layer (thickness 0.1 m) that sloped gently to the north. Both layers were dated to the Early Islamic period.
Several phases were exposed in Stratum II. A wall (W514; width c. 1 m; Fig. 7) attributed to the early phase was aligned in a northeast–southwest direction. In the northern part of the area, above the collapsed stones of Stratum III. It was built of one foundation course and an overlying course of small fieldstones. Part of a room was revealed in the south part of the area. Its walls were aligned in a general north–south, east–west direction and were built of small and medium-sized fieldstones. The room was paved with smooth flagstones (0.2–0.3 m), which were covered with a layer of white plaster. Although the stone pavement was not preserved near the walls, it probably abutted them. A corner of a building was ascribed to the late phase. Several plain, Mamluk-period bowls that were placed upside down were found intact and in situ south of the corner. Wall 514 was sealed by a thick plaster floor (Fig. 8) mixed with small limestone pieces. The fill that was sealed beneath the floor and the accumulation that abutted the wall contained pottery sherds dating to the Mamluk period. The floor was probably part of a courtyard or a street.
Area D1 (Fig. 9). At least four construction phases dating to the Early Islamic period were identified: a wall section that did not connect to any floor in the early phase, and walls that existed throughout the three last phases. Two in-situ ashlars remained on top of the foundation, indicating that ashlars were used in the construction of the walls. A pillar preserved to a height of four built courses was exposed in the south of the area. It was constructed of alternating courses of ashlars and red mortar—probably a stylistic or decorative element—that served as a doorjamb of an impressive building; most of the buildings probably extends southward, outside the excavation. A white limestone pavement founded on brown sandy and sterile soil abutted the pillar from the north (Fig. 10). The pavement and the pillar belong to all three of the later phases. The vicinity of the pillar and the stone pavement were covered with a thick destruction layer, which became deeper toward the west, beyond the excavation limits, where evidence of an enormous fire was found: large fieldstones mixed with black soot (Fig. 11). A burnt articulated skeleton of a horse was discovered slightly east of the pillar. East of the skeleton was half of an upside-down jar, which served as some sort of installation. The ceramic artifacts recovered from the destruction assemblage included a number of intact lamps dating to the Early Islamic period. A water channel that ran in an east–west direction and sloped moderately to the east was built during one of the late phases. A 14C analysis of charred olive pits found in the mortar of the water channel indicated that the channel should be dated to the eleventh century CE. The channel probably had a gutter made of stone sections, through which a terra-cotta pipe passed. A similar stone section was found in the layer below the surface.
A refuse pit was exposed in the northwest part of Area D1; it was ascribed to Stratum II and contained jugs and jars (Fig. 12).
Area D2. Two construction phases from the Early Ottoman period were exposed. Two plaster floors and two sealed water channels beneath them, which apparently conveyed water to a cistern located to the east, belong to the early phase. The wall of the cistern was discerned in the northern section of the excavation. Partial rooms (Fig. 13), comprising ashlar-built wall stumps, the bedding of a mosaic floor, a mosaic pavement made of tesserae of various sizes and raised plaster floors were ascribed to the late phase. A trial trench excavated under part of the floor revealed that the two plaster floors of the early phase were sealed beneath it. A rectangular installation that looks like a wall stump aligned in a north–south direction was found in the western part of the area (Fig. 14); its eastern and northern faces were treated with light gray plaster. The plaster on the eastern face was incised with a grooved herringbone pattern. Three square ceramic tiles adorned with a painted triangular decoration were found in a collapse east of the installation; these apparently served to cover the wall stump (Fig. 15).
Area E. The remains of Stratum III comprised at least two phases. A round plastered silo was discovered in the southern part of the area (Fig. 16). It was built inside a square installation, of which only two courses of its walls were clearly exposed. The silo installation was deliniated on the east by walls that had been robbed, and only their robber trenches survived. The silo’s floor was not exposed due to safety concerns. Part of a wall (W524; length c. 6 m; Fig.17) was discovered in the center of the area. Five courses, three in the foundation and two construction courses, were revealed in a trial trench excavated south of the wall. The southern face of the wall was built of large fieldstones dressed on the outside, and its northern face consisted of small fieldstones bonded with white mortar. A well-preserved plaster floor abutted the wall from the north.
Two intersecting drainage channels that apparently led to an inspection compartment (not excavated) were exposed in the northern part of the area. The corner of a building, probably from the early phase, was exposed to the east.
A wall (W583; Fig. 17) that adjoined W524 from the south belonged to the late phase. The eastern face of W583 was built of fieldstones dressed on their outer surface, and the western face was constructed of small and medium-sized fieldstones. Only two courses of the wall were exposed.
The remains of three strata were identified in the excavation: Stratum I from the Ottoman period, which was only discovered in Area A; Stratum II from the Mamluk period, which was discerned in Areas A–D; and Stratum III of the Early Islamic period, revealed in all of the excavation areas. The Mamluk remains were found not far from the remains of that same period discovered in excavations at the central bus station (Torgë 2011). The Stratum III remains in the west were near the surface, whereas the remains of that layer in the eastern part of the excavation strip appeared c. 2 m below the surface. The assemblage of remains, including the pillar that was exposed in Area D1, shows that part of a large public building was situated there. Judging by the skeletal remains of the burnt horse, the structure may have been used as a stable that was destroyed and burnt to the ground in an enormous fire during the eleventh century CE. Area D2 yielded wall stumps and floors of a Stratum III dwelling, which probably belonged to an affluent family. It was built of ashlars and several of its walls were covered with decorative ceramic tiles. Unlike other excavations in Ramla, where all that remained of the Early Islamic period were robber trenches, the walls of Stratum III were only partially robbed.