An excavation was conducted in October 1999 on Hill ‘B’ in Modi‘in (A-3128
*; map ref. NIG 20155/64500; OIG 15155/14500; ESI
20) prior to construction. The excavation, on behalf of the Antiquities Authority and financed by the Modi‘in Local Council, was directed by Y. Zelinger, with the assistance of A. Abu Garbiya (administration), A. Hajian (surveying), E. Belashov (drafting), T. Sagiv (photography) and I. Carmi and E. Buarto (14
Four sites (32, 34, 36A, 53B) were excavated; some of them had previously been investigated in 1998 (Permit No. A-2510). A charcoal kiln was exposed in Site 32, within a cave that was cut in the northern slope of the hill (Fig. 1). The cave was a single, irregular-shaped cavity (L1037; length 4.6 m, height 2.6 m), accessed via a hewn corridor (L1032; length 3 m, width 0.9 m). Two charcoal layers (L1048––thickness 0.15 m; L1051––thickness 0.1 m) separated by a layer of friable rock (L1050) were revealed below the stone collapse and soil (thickness 1 m). Analysis of charcoal samples from the two layers had shown that the charcoal kiln was used for c. 300 years, from the second half of the 17th century until the middle of the 20th century. Site 34 contained a circular hewn installation (diam. 0.9 m, depth 1.4 m; Fig. 2) that was probably used for collecting run-off from bedrock surface. A hewn shaft (diam. 1.2–1.6 m, depth 2.4 m) was found in Site 36A; it yielded scant, non-diagnostic ceramic finds. A cave dwelling (Fig. 3) was explored in Site 53B, on the eastern slope of the hill. The cave’s ceiling was removed by mechanical equipment, owing to the danger of collapse. The cave consisted of an anteroom (1.15 × 1.70 m) and an irregular-shaped cavity (2.7 × 4.8 m). Judging by ceramic finds it was probably used in the Byzantine period.