Lot 9
A strip (2 × 20 m; Squares A–E; Figs. 1, 2) was excavated where bedrock drops precipitously from west to east in a number of terraces. Walls (W924, W930 and W934) that formed cells were built perpendicular to the bedrock slope. The cells were filled with soil that contained numerous potsherds dating to Iron I. Above the cells, fieldstone-built foundations that apparently supported mud-brick walls were exposed. These walls were apparently coated with red plaster, as evidenced by many plaster fragments found in the ruins. A round stone that may have been used as a column (Fig. 3) was incorporated in one of the wall foundations (W951). An accumulated layer of burnt soil and ash (thickness c. 1.5 m; Fig. 4), which contained many Iron I potsherds, attests to a mighty blaze that destroyed the buildings.
A large building was constructed in the Late Roman period, atop the ruins of the Iron Age structures. The foundations of a wall (W902; preserved height 3.25 m) in the eastern part of the excavation were set on bedrock. Another wall (W912), which was overlain with a pilaster of ashlar stones (Fig. 5) and was probably constructed in the Phoenician building tradition, abutted W902. A floor overlain with stone collapse and pottery vessels from the Late Roman period abutted these walls.
Two connected bell-shaped pits (Fig. 6) were hewn in chalk bedrock that was exposed below surface at the western end of the lot. The ceiling of the northern pit was entirely preserved and had an opening, blocked with stones; the ceiling of the southern pit had collapsed or was intentionally removed. Plaster remains were not traced in the pits, which were apparently used as silos or as a winery, rather than as water cisterns. The pits contained fragments of pottery vessels whose date ranged from the Roman to the Mamluk periods.
A fieldstone paved surface (L922) in the center of the excavation area was most likely the courtyard of a house from the nineteenth century CE.
Lot 11
A strip (2.5 × 20.0 m; Squares A–E; Figs. 7, 8) was excavated on a slope where bedrock moderately slanted from west to east, compared to its steep drop in Lot 9.
Remains of buildings that dated to Iron I were found. Their exposed walls (W131, W133; Fig. 9) could not form a coherent plan due to the limited excavation area. Layers of burnt red soil and ash, which contained a large amount of pottery vessels from Iron I (Loci 127, 132), attest to the same violent destruction as evidenced in Lot 9.
Settlement was renewed in the Late Roman period and new buildings were constructed on the ruins of the Iron Age. One of the walls of these buildings (W105; Fig. 10) was constructed from ashlar pilasters in the Phoenician building tradition.
Two walls (W111, W114) were exposed above a bedrock terrace at the western end of the area. The walls formed a corner in which finds from the Byzantine period were uncovered.
A wide pit that penetrated into the Roman layer was filled with collapse of small stones and numerous pottery fragments from the Mamluk period (L124), although no building remains from this period were found.
A stone pavement (L113) that was found in the eastern part of the excavation was similar to the one revealed in Lot 9. The pavement was placed directly on the remains from the Roman period and next to it was a cluster of tools and iron horseshoes that probably belonged to residents of the moshava in the nineteenth century CE.