During March 2006, a trial excavation was conducted at Kefar Daniel (Permit No. A-4753*; map ref. NIG 193715–27/649281–91; OIG 143715–27/149281–91), as part of a project to expand Highway 10. The excavation, on behalf of the Antiquities Authority and with financial support of the Department of Public Works, was directed by A. ‘Azab, with the assistance of E. Bachar (administration), A. Hajian (surveying), A. Dagot (GPS surveying), M. Peilstöker and A. Re’em (Central Region).
The excavation was located on the gentle northern slope of Kefar Daniel. On the surface one could discern ancient settlement remains, pits and tombs along with potsherds that dated to Iron II and the Hellenistic and Roman periods.
A ritual bath (miqwe; 3.80 × 4.20 m, height 4.20 m; Fig. 1) that was hewn in the chalk bedrock was excavated. The miqwe was accessed via an arched entrance (0.80 × 1.80 m) and a rock-hewn staircase. Four steps treated with a layer of hydraulic plaster led to the immersion pool. The first step was the entrance level (L102; 1.40 × 2.00 m); the second, third (Loci 103, 104; 0.50 × 1.20 m) and fourth (L105; 1.10 × 1.65 m) steps descended into the pool. The pool (L106; 2.4 × 4.0 m) was elliptical and its bottom and walls were covered with a layer of hydraulic plaster to a height of 1.7 m.
The miqwe, which was located near rock-hewn tombs that dated to the time of the Second Temple period, was well preserved. Plaster repairs made to its walls were noted. It should be ascribed to the Jewish population that inhabited the settlement at that time.