In December 2016, a trial excavation was conducted at 4 Ha-ʽAliya Street in Gedera (Permit No. A-7868; map ref. 178715/636256), prior to construction. The excavation, undertaken on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority and financed by Amissar Engineers Ltd., was directed by A. Dagot-Ziv, with the assistance of Y. Amrani and E. Bachar (administration), I. Marmelstein (antiquities inspection and field photography), D. Golan (pottery reading), P. Gendelman (assistance and scientific consultation), M. Kahan (surveying and drafting), A. Gorzalczany (studio photography), M. Shuiskaya (pottery drawing) and R. Moshe (preliminary inspections).
Two excavation squares (A1, A2; Fig. 2) were opened. Square A1 (Fig. 3) yielded scattered pottery sherds along with an intact goblet (Figs. 2:2; 4:2) and two jars (Figs. 2:3, 4; 4:3, 4); the three vessels were found in situ. Square A2 yielded the base of a jar (Figs. 2:1; 5) and a round bowl (Fig. 4:1) within a heap of collapsed kurkar stones. They seem to have originated in a burial cave (caves?) hewn in the soft kurkar that subsequently collapsed.
The vessels were made of light buff-gray clay, with tiny inclusions of white temper. Similar vessels found in and around the basin of Nah
al Yarqon are characteristic of Intermediate Bronze Age tombs (Yannai 2007
: Figs. 4, 6; Yannai and Nagar 2014
: Figs. 3.5:12, 3.12:2). It seems that these finds, along with the dagger found nearby (Gorzalczany 2000
), indicate that burial caves were hewn at the foot of Tell Qatra during the Intermediate Bronze Age (2200–
2000 BCE), and served the population that lived in the vicinity of the tell.
Gorzalczany A. 2000. Gedera, Bronze Dagger. HA-ESI
Kaplan Y. 1953. Archaeological Survey in the Gedera–El-Maghar Region. Yediot
Levy Y. 1990. Gedera. ESI 7–8:60.
Yannai E. 2007. An Intermediate Bronze Age Cemetery at Azor. ʽAtiqot 55:1–28 (Hebrew; English summary, pp. 53–54).
Yannai E. and Nagar Y. 2014. Bet Dagan: Intermediate Bronze Age and Mamluk-Period Cemeteries, 2004–2005 Excavations (IAA Reports 55). Jerusalem.