During June 2006, a trial excavation was conducted on Toledano Street in the Ge’ulim neighborhood (Shikun A) of Tiberias (Permit No. A-4834; map ref. NIG 250872/743074; OIG 200872/243074), prior to the installation of a sewer. The excavation, undertaken on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority and financed by the Tiberias municipality, was directed by E. Damati (photography), with the assistance of Y. Ya‘aqobi (administration) and G. Bijovsky (numismatics).
Two squares were opened, one north of and adjacent to the bend in the road (A) and the other at the bottom of the road, on the sidewalk to its southwest (B; Fig. 1). The two ends of this road section were paved above two parallel ancient gullies that descended from west to east. The gullies were clogged up with accumulations of soil and refuse that were dumped down the slopes descending to them. These ancient accumulations were disturbed when new fills for leveling the terrain were laid prior to paving the street.
Square A. Modern remains from the 1950s and 1960s were found, including two asphalt layers of an old road, a stone fence and a path paved with stone slabs (depth below surface c. 0.7 m) and a cement sewer (diam. c. 0.45 m) at a depth of 1.3 m. The excavation reached bedrock at a depth of 2.5 m. The intense construction and digging activities that had taken place in the area since the neighborhood was established disturbed the fills and no artifacts were discovered in situ. Nonetheless, potsherds dating from the Herodian period (a lamp fragment from the founding of Tiberias) through the Byzantine period and the entire Abbasid period (eighth–ninth centuries CE), were found in the fill and soil that had accumulated above bedrock.
Square B was opened as a trench (2 × 10 m) along the sidewalk. The exposure of a sewer, 0.4 m below the sidewalk bedding, compelled the excavation to continue west of the sewer and only in the northern half of the trench (2 × 5 m). The excavation, to a depth of 3 m below surface, did not reach bedrock. Below the fills of the sidewalk’s bedding was the foundation of a modern stone fence that was built at a level 0.6 m lower than the current surface and to whose east side the excavation continued. Below the foundation, two levels of accumulation—a dark brown upper stratum (thickness c. 1.2 m) and a reddish brown lower stratum (thickness c. 0.6 m), were exposed. The accumulation levels clearly evidenced layers of refuse that had been poured down into the gully from north to south. These accumulations, which lay on dark virgin soil that was devoid of potsherds, contained fragments of pottery vessels that dated to the Byzantine period, including numerous fragments of domestic ware, roof tiles and fragments of glass vessels, as well as the stems of glass lamps. A coin of the Emperor Constantius II (351–361 CE; IAA 117671) was recovered from the bedding of the sidewalk.