Six squares were excavated in the area, located c. 20 m west of Maqam Nebi Saraqa (Fig. 2). A wall, aligned east–west and built of debesh and medium-sized fieldstones, was exposed c. 0.4 m below surface in Squares 5 and 6. One side of the wall, coated with plaster, was preserved a single course high (W27; length 7.8 m, width 0.6 m, preserved height 0.4–0.6 m). Fifteen rectangular cist graves (T101–T106, T110, T112–T119), oriented east–west, were exposed on both sides of the wall and in Squares 2 and 3. These were covered with stone slabs, placed on the stones that delineated the graves. The direction and shape of the tombs indicate that they probably belonged to the Muslim cemetery from the Ottoman period.
Many fragments of pottery and glass vessels, dating to the Byzantine period (fifth–sixth centuries CE), as well as iron slag, were recovered from the soil where the graves had been dug.
Twelve squares were excavated in this area, located c. 50 m northeast of Area A and east of Maqam Nebi Saraqa (Figs. 3–5).
Tombs. An east–west oriented wall (W17; length 3.6 m, width 0.4 m), built of large fieldstones without mortar and preserved a single course high, was exposed in Square 9. The wall was flanked on both sides by three tombs (T120–T122), similar to those discovered in Area A. Two other tombs (T123, T124) were uncovered in Square 11; the discovery of tombs suspended the excavation in Squares 7 and 8.
Building Remains. Two phases were discerned in an exposed architectural complex.
Sections of walls, probably remains of buildings, were ascribed to the late phase. A wall, built of dressed stones (W18; length 1.5 m, width 0.4 m) and oriented east–west, was exposed in Square 10. A wall (W20; length 0.6 m, width 0.8 m), built of small and medium fieldstones, abutted it on the south; both walls were preserved a single course high. An east–west oriented wall (W10; length 5.8 m, width 0.4–0.6 m, preserved height 0.6 m) was exposed in Squares 11–13. A single course, built of debesh and large square dressed stones, was preserved on a foundation of small and medium fieldstones. Two walls (W19 – length 2.2 m, width 1.4–1.7 m; W21 – length 0.9 m, width 0.5 m), possibly pillars oriented north–south, abutted on the south side of Wall 10. The walls, built of small and medium fieldstones, were bonded with grayish white mortar. Wall 21 was poorly preserved. Northeast of W10 and perpendicular to it was a north–south oriented wall (W22; length 3 m, width 0.5–1.3 m), built of small and medium fieldstones and preserved a single course high. Three walls, built of medium and large fieldstones, were exposed in Square 15 (W23 – length 4.2 m, width 1 m; W24 – length 1.6 m, width 0.5–1.0 m; W25 – length 2.1 m, width 0.2–1.0 m). The walls, preserved two courses high, were coated with grayish white plaster.
The early phase consisted of a partially preserved mosaic floor (L30) that was set on wadi pebbles and white plaster, north of Wall 10 and c. 0.10–0.15 m below it.
Installations. Two phases were discerned in an installation, which was exposed in Square 16 and whose purpose is unclear. The later phase consisted of a plaster floor (L2; 0.3 m below surface) that was overlain with potsherds that dated to the Early Islamic period. Two walls that formed a corner (W14, W16) and a mosaic floor (L6) between them were ascribed to the early phase. Wall 14 (length c. 4 m, width 1.0–1.2 m, preserved height 0.21 m), aligned east–west and preserved a single course high, was built of large roughly dressed stones with small stones in-between, without any mortar. A very short section (length 1.5 m, width 1.2 m) had survived of Wall 16, which was oriented north–south and built of fieldstones without mortar. Floor 6 abutted on Wall 14 from the north. The partly preserved floor was covered with stone collapse that damaged it and may have fallen from Walls 14 and 16. Fragments of pottery vessels from the Byzantine–Early Islamic period were found on Floor 6. A wall (W15; length 2 m, width 0.25 m, preserved height 0.35), oriented north–south and built of small fieldstones, had survived west of and perpendicular to Wall 14. The interior face of the wall was coated with white plaster and a plaster floor (L8) was related to it.
Part of a wall (W26; length 4 m, width 0.6 m, preserved height 0.15 m), built of dressed stones and preserved a single course high, was exposed in Squares 17 and 18. Wall 26, oriented east–west, was abutted from the north by a mosaic pavement (L31) and a stone-slab floor (L32), in each of which a broken circular stone was embedded. It seems that the remains were part of an installation, whose nature is unclear.
The ceramic finds from both excavations, dating to the end of the Byzantine period and the Early Islamic period, were mixed and came from unsealed assemblages.
The bowls include shallow, glazed vessels (Fig. 6:1), unglazed (Fig. 6:2) and deep vessels (Fig.6:3–7), some of which are decorated with a combed design (Fig. 6:3, 4). The cooking vessels include a partially glazed frying pan (Fig. 7:1), open cooking pots (Fig. 7:2–5), closed cooking pots, some dating to the Byzantine–Umayyad periods (Fig. 7:6–8) and some (Fig. 7:9, 10), to the Early Islamic period (end of the ninth–eleventh centuries CE) and lids (Fig. 7:11, 12). The storage jars consist of the bag-shaped jars (Fig. 8:1–5) and Gaza jars (Fig. 8:6–8). A jug (Fig. 8:9) and a jug handle (Fig. 8:10) were also found. Two decorated body fragments are noteworthy; the first (Fig. 9:1) belongs to a mold-made bowl that is dated to the Early Islamic period (eighth–tenth centuries CE) and the other (Fig. 9:2) belongs to a closed vessel, possibly Coptic, with a red wash and a painted flower (lotus?) or face. The lamps included a specimen that has a double ridge (Fig. 9:3) and dates to the middle of the fourth–middle of the sixth century CE, a sealed Samaritan lamp decorated with dotted bows (Fig. 9:4) that dates to the fifth–sixth centuries CE, a mold-made piriform lamp with a channeled nozzle (Fig. 9:5) that dates to the eighth–eleventh centuries CE and a large type of lamp that sometimes has more than one wick-hole (Fig. 9:6), which dates to the Early Islamic period (second half of the eighth–eleventh centuries CE).
The fragments of glass vessels include bowls with rims that are folded out and have a raised base ring, bottle rims rounded in fire and a wine goblet with a hollow base ring and a cylindrical stem, all of which date to the Byzantine period (fifth–sixth centuries CE).
Other finds include a decorated bone (Fig. 9:7), used as a pendant, an amulet or part of a doll’s arm, which is dated to the Early Islamic period , as well as two coins: a Roman provincial coin (first–second centuries CE; IAA 109777) and a coin from the Late Roman period (fourth–fifth centuries CE; IAA 109776).