Area 1 (Figs. 2, 3). Remains ascribed to three periods were discovered. A quarry for kurkar building stones was exposed in the southwest of the area. The quarry dates to either the Late Iron Age or an early phase of the Persian period, since a Late Persian-period building was constructed above it (below; Fig. 4). The foundations of two of the building’s rooms (5 × 6 m) were revealed above the quarry. The foundations were constructed of fieldstones; ashlars were incorporated in the openings. The building dates to the Late Persian period on the basis of the ceramic artifacts discovered in it, as well as a tiny bronze coin of Alexander III (Macedon) that was probably minted in Cyprus in 336–323 BCE (IAA 106769). The ceramic finds ascribed to the Persian period included bowls (Fig. 5:1–11), an imitation of an Attic bowl (Fig. 5:12), kraters (Fig. 5:15, 16), morataria (Fig. 5:19–26), cooking vessels (Fig. 6:1–7), amphorae (Fig. 6:9–13), jars (Fig. 6:14, 15), a juglet (Fig. 6:17) and decorated body fragments (Fig. 6:19–22). Animal bones were also discovered when excavating the building (Marom, below). The building seems to have belonged to the agricultural hinterland of the settlement whose remains were exposed in Nahariyya and Shave Ziyyon, which dates to the Persian and Hellenistic periods.
Pottery from the Hellenistic period was found in the area, including cooking vessels (Fig. 7:1–3), jars (Fig. 7:5–11) and a jug handle (Fig. 7:13). The ceramic finds from the Hellenistic period may belong to a layer that was completely eradicated by modern cultivation, but since no architectural remains from this period were discovered, this conclusion remains uncertain.
Neither the Persian-period assemblage nor that from the Hellenistic period included any imported ware, which is common feature in the pottery repertoires of these periods from the northern coastal plain. This absence seems to reflect the local and agricultural nature of the building.
 
Area 2 (Fig. 8–10) yielded a section of an imperial Roman road (length 50 m, width 7 m) that ran from Antioch to ‘Akko-Ptolemais. Part of the roadbed, most of the western curbstones and several of the eastern curbstones were preserved. The road was built in the customary manner used to construct main highways throughout the Roman Empire. First, two wide foundation trenches were dug for the two curb walls that delineated the road (width 1.5–2.0 m, depth c. 0.5 m). The trenches were partially filled with a bedding (width c. 0.6 m, depth 0.4 m) of light-colored, indigenous soil mixed with pottery sherds, ground limestone and kurkar fragments. A bronze coin from the reign of Ptolemais II or III (285–222 BCE; IAA 106770) was found in the foundation. Then, the curbs were constructed on the wall foundations (W406, W407). The curbs were preserved to a maximum height of two courses: the foundation course was built of large fieldstones; the course above it was built of ashlars arranged as headers (Fig. 11). The sectional trenches showed that the roadbed was higher than the curbstones; it therefore seems that the curbs comprised at least one more course of stones, which was not preserved. The cross-section of some of the curbstones was triangular; these may have been part of a channel that drained the water along the roadside. The roadbed was laid after the construction of the curb walls. It was made of small- and medium-sized fieldstones along with dressed stones in secondary use. Sections of the roadbed were preserved mainly near the western curb wall (Fig. 12). Layers of white plaster were incorporated in the roadbed in order to reinforce it. A row of stones (L409) running exactly down the middle of the road probably served as a foundation for a lane divider that separated the road into two lanes. The road’s paving stones were not preserved; the pavement along the middle of the road was most probably higher than along the sides in order to drain the runoff, as is the case in other imperial roads (Fig. 13). The width of the road is consistent with that of contemporary roads that were previously unearthed in Nahariyya, ‘Akko and in Lebanon (Goodchild 1949; Mayer 1986; Yitah 1998; Finkielsztejn 2007; Lerer 2012).
Only a scant amount of pottery was found in Area 2, all within the roadbed. It included sherds from the Persian period, among them bowls (Fig. 5:13, 14), kraters (Fig. 5:17, 18), mortaria (Fig. 5:27), a cooking pot (Fig. 6:8), a jar (Fig. 6:16) and a juglet (Fig. 6:18); and Hellenistic-period finds, among them an amphora (Fig. 7:4) and a jar rim (Fig. 7:12).
The road segment exposed in the excavation is the longest segment of the imperial road running from Antioch to ‘Akko-Ptolemais that has been excavated to date. The dedication inscription found in the past in Nahariyya suggest that this road was built in 56 CE (Avi-Yonah 1946; Mayer 1986). A milestone found c. 1,500 m south of the excavation, whose inscription was defaced (Frankel and Getzov 2012) probably marked the next station along the same road.
 
Faunal Remains
Nimrod Marom
 
The animal bones from Area 1 were collected without sifting. The assemblage dates to the Persian period and consists mostly of bones belonging to sheep/goat (Capra hircus and Ovis aries), and in smaller numbers—to cattle (Bos taurus) (Table 1). The sheep/goat assemblage consists of numerous parts of the fleshy limbs and several parts of the head and feet (Table 2); thus, it seems that the initial dismemberment and slaughter of these animals were done elsewhere, not in the excavation area, while their edible parts were discarded in the excavation area. The cattle assemblage, however, comprises only slaughtering waste (feet and head), suggesting that the initial dismemberment of the animals was carried out nearby. Thus, the small sampling of bones from the excavation suggests that the slaughter and dismemberment of sheep/goats were done by an expert butcher, while the slaughter and dismemberment of cattle were done at the site. Most of the bones used to determine the age at death for sheep/goats and cattle (N=16) belong to adult animals. Five rear molars (M3) of sheep/goats were found in an early (N=1) and in active (N=4) state of erosion, indicating that the animals were three to four years old at the time of slaughter. A single fractured pelvis of a sheep/goat belonged to a ram or a male goat.
The bones from Shave Ziyyon are weathered, suggesting that they remained exposed on the surface for a long time before they were buried. Judging by the condition of the bone fragments, it seems that they were broken when already dry due to trampling and various diagenetic processes, and were not fractured by man while still fresh so as to extract marrow. Butchering and chewing marks are extremely rare, and the weathering of the bones probably degraded their state of preservation. No burn marks were found on the bones.
The bone assemblage from the Persian-period building reflects a rural, livestock economy that included mainly sheep/goats and cattle. It seems that the sheep/goats were brought to the residents of the building via a traditional supply chain that included an expert butcher, whereas the cattle were slaughtered on site.
The number of bones identified from the layers of fill dating to the Iron Age and the Hellenistic period is small, and no conclusions can be drawn from these bones regarding the economy of the site during these periods.
 
Table 1. Bones discovered in the excavation
Species
Fill from the Hellenistic period
Persian period levels
Fill in the quarry
Sheep/goat
11 (100%)
36 (78%)
4 (100%)
Cattle
 
10 (22%)
 
Total
11
46
4
 
 

 
Table 2. Breakdown of the skeletal parts (NISP – number of identified specimens; MNE – minimum number of elements)
Skeletal part
Size of sheep/goat
Size of cattle
NISP
MNE
NISP
MNE
Head
0
0
1
1
Body
2
2
0
0
Fore limb
18
9
0
0
Rear limb
15
4
0
0
Foot
6
2
3
1