In August 2013, a trial excavation was conducted in the village of Na‘ura, east of Giv‘at Ha-Moreh (Permit No. A-6881; map ref. 724473–506/237059–87). The excavation, on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority, was directed by A. Mokary (field photography), with the assistance of Y. Lavan (administration), A. Shapiro (GPS), R. Mishayev (surveying and drafting) and H. Tahan-Rosen (pottery drawing).
The top soil (thickness 0.5 m) was removed by mechanical equipment prior to the excavation. Remains of a dwelling (Figs. 1, 2) consisting of a square room (4 × 4 m) and a courtyard were revealed in the excavation. The building was constructed of limestone ashlars that were set on the rock. The northern, southern and eastern walls of the room (W10, W14, W24) were completely uncovered, while the western wall (W25) was only partially exposed. A probe next to W24 revealed that the wall was founded on the bedrock (L23). The room had a tamped-earth floor (L15, L21). A stone column-base, which probably supported a wood and mortar ceiling, was discovered in the center of the room. Charred remains of the ceiling were found on the floor. Fragments of pottery dating to the Early Islamic period (seventh–eighth century CE) were gathered on the floor . They included bowls (Fig. 3:1, 2), a cooking pot (Fig. 3:3), jar fragments (Fig. 3:4, 5), a jug (Fig. 3:6) and a buff-ware jug with elongated neck and combed-dots decoration (Fig. 3:7). Fragments of a spindle bottle (Fig. 3:8) dating to the Early Roman period, were found under the floor of the room. The paving of the courtyard was of basalt flagstones (L20; Fig. 4), and abutted the three surviving walls. Body fragments of black jars decorated with white stripes, dating to the Early Islamic period (seventh–eighth century CE), were collected on the courtyard pavement. Adjacent to the courtyard, on its north, was a built passage (width c. 1 m; Fig. 5) bounded by two walls (W11, W18), and with a tamped earth floor (L19). The passage led to a narrow opening (width 0.5 m) in the eastern wall of the room. Fragments of Early Islamic pottery were collected on the floor of the passage. The walls and floors of the building bore clear marks of fire, and there was a thick layer of ash and charred remains (thickness c. 0.6 m) on the floors of the room and the passage. It seems therefore that the building was destroyed in an intense fire that caused also the collapse of the ceiling.