Starting in 2019 and continuing still, excavations have been conducted to the south and east of Tel Yavne in five excavation areas (A–D, G; Figs. 1, 2). Extensive excavations were previously conducted immediately to the north of Areas A and B (Yannai 2014). Excavations in Area A revealed the remains of a large winery and pottery-production kilns from the Persian period (Haddad et al. 2021, and see historical overview and references therein). No antiquities were found between Areas A and B, and an ancient wadi may have flowed through there.
Four sub-areas were opened in Area B (B1–B4; Fig. 3), uncovering the remains of buildings and installations of the Byzantine and Umayyad periods, architectural remains and pottery kilns of the Early Islamic period, and pottery of all abovementioned periods as well as the Bronze Age, Iron Age and Persian period. Considering these finds with those of the previous excavations, it seems there was a substantial industrial zone in and around Area B that operated mostly in the Byzantine and Early Islamic periods. Additional parts of this industrial zone were uncovered in Areas C and G.
In Area D, c. 650 m southwest of Areas A and B, an irrigation channel from the end of the Ottoman period was found, indicating that the land around the tell was farmed during this period; Iron Age, Persian, Hellenistic and Byzantine pottery was also found here.
Bronze Age, Iron Age and Persian period
Area B yielded pottery from the MB IIA–B, Late Bronze, Iron Age and the Persian period but no architectural remains. Otherwise, pottery from these periods was discovered in several surveys and excavations, indicating human presence on and near the tell during these periods (Fischer and Taxel 2007:216–218). Previous excavations found an Iron Age cemetery to the north of the tell (Kletter, Ziffer and Zwickel 2010; 2015; Kletter and Nagar 2015).
Several probes were dug into clayey soil beneath the Byzantine–Umayyad structural remains and debris. A layer of sand was encountered in several places beneath the clayey soil. The probes did not reach natural bedrock and pottery of the Middle Bronze Age IIA–IIB, the Late Bronze Age, the Iron Age and the Persian period was found in the deposits. The typical Middle Bronze Age IIA finds include carinated and globular bowls (Fig. 4:1–3), pithoi (Fig. 4:6) and jars (Fig. 4:9). The typical Middle Bronze Age IIB finds include bowls (Fig. 4:4, 5) and jars (Fig. 4:7, 8). Of the Late Bronze Age, only a few potsherds were found (they will be published in the final report). Of the Iron Age and Persian period, the typical finds comprise tableware, cooking pots and storage vessels. The tableware includes small red-slipped and burnished bowls with thin, slightly carinated walls and a groove below the rim (Fig. 5:1–3), medium-sized bowls with a thickened triangular rim (Fig. 5:4, 5), large deep bowls (Fig. 5:6), and a large quantity of semi-closed globular kraters with a sharply inverted rim, coarse fabric with calcareous inclusions and a burnished exterior face (Fig. 5:7, 8). Although the shape and fabric of the globular kraters resemble cooking vessels, the fact that their rim and exterior are burnished renders their association with cooking improbable. The cooking ware includes closed cooking pots with a bulbous carinated rim (Fig. 5:9, 10), as well as a jug with a simple rim (Fig. 5:11). The storage vessels include holemouth jars with smooth and ribbed shelf rims (Fig. 5:12, 13, respectively) together with upright-shouldered jars (Fig. 5:14–18) and an imported amphora (Fig. 5:19). The majority of the vessels—the medium and large bowls (Fig. 5:4–6), the cooking pots (Fig. 5:9, 10), the jug (Fig. 5:11), the various jars (Fig. 5:12–18) and the amphora (Fig. 5:19)—emerged in the Iron Age IIB. The jars continue into the Persian period. The thin-walled bowls (Fig. 5:1–3) and the globular kraters (Fig. 5:7, 8) appear only in Iron Age IIC.
Byzantine and Umayyad Periods
Area B yielded remains of buildings and installations, each manifesting several construction phases (Fig. 6); the main construction phases are described below. Additionally, the eastern part of the area contained a sizeable pottery-workshop dump, and the southwestern part contained a domestic refuse dump (Area B3).
Two circular pits (L14371, L14372; diam. 0.5 m, depth c. 0.3 m) were discovered in the southern part of the area, beneath the foundations of walls (W14235, W14168) of the later phase. The pits were dug into clayey and sandy soil, and their rims were lined with small fieldstones. The pits contained fragments of Gaza Ware jars that may have been discarded there in a late phase. To the west of the pits, at the same elevation, a cluster of fieldstones (L14378) was uncovered; their function is unclear. The stones may have collapsed from a wall whose original location was not detected. Since the pits and the stone cluster are relatively far apart, they cannot be associated with certainty. These remains are attributed to the early phase due to their position beneath the features of the late phase in the area.
The features attributed to the main Byzantine–Umayyad phase are a large building covering most of Area B, an elongated structure to its west, and a reservoir (Fig. 7). The eastern side of the western structure was juxtaposed by a north–south oriented, beaten earth street (width c. 3.5 m) with large amounts of potsherds in its makeup. The reservoir and the large building were accessed from this street. Since the relationship between these features has not yet been clarified, each will be described separately.
The Large Building. A large building (c. 50 × 50 m; Fig. 6) spans most of Area B, comprising three rows of rooms encircling a large inner courtyard on the west, south and east. There may have been another row of rooms on the building’s northern side, but this area has not yet been excavated. Based on the finds inside it, the building operated mainly in the sixth century CE and to a lesser degree in the seventh century CE. The building is contemporary with the reservoir’s later phase (see below). Here, the building’s four main phases (1–4) are described, from the earliest to the latest.
Phase 1—In this phase, the three rows of rooms were built around the large courtyard. Of most of the building’s outer walls, only the foundations were preserved; they were built of small and medium-sized kurkar fieldstones without bonding material and preserved approximately 0.7 m high. In a few places, above the foundations, a single ashlar course of the wall was preserved; it bonded with white mortar mixed with shells. Some of the building’s corners were marked by thickened construction for reinforcement. The building’s interior walls varied in construction. Some had a foundation built of one or two courses of roughly dressed kurkar stones and fieldstones of various sizes.
In the western row, three stone-paved rooms (5–7; Fig. 7) were uncovered; the floor of Room 5 was higher than the others. In the eastern row, the interior walls were not preserved. Colored tesserae were found in its southern part; it is unclear whether they belonged to the floor or were discarded in this location. The western end of the southern row consisted of a large elongated room (8; 6 × 16 m; it is bounded on the east by wall 13190). In its center, a large pile of fieldstone rubble collapsed from the walls was found. To the east of Room 8, at least six more rooms were uncovered (10–15), some of whose interior walls had been robbed. Rooms 10, 11, 14 and 15 yielded traces of stone floors, whereas the other rooms may have had tamped earth floors. In the northeastern corner of Room 12, an in situ pottery assemblage was found (L13365; Fig. 8), including an intact chamber pot (Fig. 9:3) and cooking jug (Fig. 9:4), together with fragments of FBW bowl (Fig. 9:1), a casserole (Fig. 9:2), saqiye vessels (Fig. 9:5, 6) and candlestick-type lamps (Fig. 9:7). The assemblage is assigned to the Late Byzantine and Umayyad periods, thus dating the final stage of use of the room. A few fragments of sixth–seventh-century CE glass bottles were also found in the corner of Room 12. A fill sealed beneath the stone floor in Room 10 yielded a 40 nummi Byzantine coin dated to the sixth century CE.
Phase 2—In this phase, Room 8 was converted into a reservoir. The inner face of the room’s walls was coated with pinkish plaster, mainly preserved in its eastern half. Signs of smoothed mortar coating (rolka) on the lower parts of the walls attest to a floor that was not preserved but probably sealed the collapsed stones from the previous phase. The area’s natural southward incline increased the water pressure on the room’s southern wall (W14168). It was, therefore, reinforced with a new cast foundation on top of the earlier one and three buttresses. A clay water pipe (W14241) leading to the reservoir was coated with lime-based concrete mixed with shells and small fieldstones. The pipe’s water source was not detected. Near the pipe’s joint with the structure, east of the eastern buttress, a round plastered installation (L13204) and a drainage channel leading southward (L13106) were found. The channel sides were built of small fieldstones; it was set on the soil and covered with kurkar slabs. Although no connection was found, their proximity suggests that Installation 13204 served as an overflow outlet for the reservoir.
The eastward continuation of the southern walls of the southern row of rooms (W13285, W13265) was built in a manner similar to W14168. Walls 13285 and 13265 were preserved two–three courses high, built of ashlars and fieldstones held together with a thick, coarse mortar. The three walls of Phase 2 (W13265, W13285, W14168) were not built as a single unit but in technically distinct phases. Wall 13265 continues eastward beyond the excavation area.
Phase 3—The reservoir was put out of use by a wall built in its center (W13189), which divided it into two rooms. Both rooms were stone-paved. To their west, a small pool (L14222) was built and connected to Clay Pipe 14241, in order to drain the excess water to the main pipe. Three plaster floors (L14234, L14246, L14300) laid one on top of the other abut the pool and two other walls (W13286, W14235); they attest to repairs made to the floors while the building was in use.
Phase 4—In this phase, a room (16) was added; its walls were built of fieldstone, and its floor was earthen. Gaza Ware jars were uncovered on the floor. The building was eventually destroyed when its walls collapsed. In the building’s western row, near the corner of Walls 17034 and 17057 and beneath the building’s debris, a headless skeleton of a dog was uncovered (Fig. 10). In both parts of Room 8 and the southern part of the eastern row (L13259), deposits of white rubble consisting of thick plaster fragments, small fieldstones and potsherds were found above the remains, probably deriving from the building’s collapsed ceiling. The rubble layer in the eastern part of Room 8 yielded two sixth-century CE Byzantine coins.
After the building’s collapse, there was little activity in the area. Near Pool 14222, a small kiln (L14291) was built into a surface of tamped earth mixed with potsherds. This surface covered the building’s walls and was leveled to the height of the collapsed ceiling. An elliptical clay-brick installation (L13419) was built into the collapsed detritus (L13259) of the eastern row’s southern part, and it was found containing pottery vessels. To the east of the eastern row was a pile of pottery-workshop waste (L13402; below) that rendered this part of the building obsolete; it is not yet clear whether the western part of the structure continued to be used. At this stage of the research, the structure’s use is unclear, but it was probably a public industrial structure.
The Elongated Western Building. An elongated building on a north–south alignment comprised at least four rooms was found(1–4; Figs. 6, 7); it extended beyond the excavation area. Part of this building was previously excavated by Eli Yannai (Yannai 2014, Area A3). Two occupation phases were identified in the building.
The Early Phase—The foundations of the outer walls were built of one to two courses of small and medium-sized kurkar fieldstones. The exterior walls’ upper part was built of an outer row of roughly-dressed kurkar stones and small fieldstones lining the wall’s interior; the walls were preserved one to three courses high. The western wall’s outer face was coated with smoothed mortar (rolka). The inner walls were built of small fieldstones foundation and above ashlar wall, that preserved to one course hight. The building’s walls were abutted by grayish beaten earth floors. In Rooms 2 and 4, pottery and glass were found in situ on the floors (Fig. 11), buried beneath copious amounts of fieldstones and plaster fragments, attesting to the building’s collapse.
The ceramic finds date from the sixth–seventh centuries CE and include cooking pots and lids (Fig. 12:1–6), torpedo-shaped Gaza jars (Majecherek Type 4; Fig. 12:7, 8), one intact jar sent for restoration (not illustrated), candlestick lamps (Fig. 12:9–11) and a roof tile (Fig. 12:12).
The glass finds include a bowl (Fig. 13:1) and a bottle (Fig. 13:2) dated to the fourth–sixth centuries CE and various large, delicate bowls (diam. 15–18 cm) with fire-rounded rims (Fig. 14:1–4) and a trail-wound bowl base (Fig. 14:5) that are common in fourth–early fifth-century CE. For example, parallels for the abovementioned features have been found in the cemetery and the glass workshop at Khirbat el-Ni‘ana (Gorin-Rosen and Katsnelson 2007:76–78, 88–90, Figs. 1:1, 3, 4, 7:3–5, 27:1, 2, 31:1–3). Two additional bottles are notable, one with a fire-rounded rim and the other with an infolded rim (Fig. 14:6, 7). A small fragment of a dark glass bracelet decorated with diagonal ribbing (Fig. 14:8) was also found. The quality of the glass and the weathering of the bottles and the bracelet are characteristic of fourth–fifth century CE glassware. These vessels are familiar from burial complexes and settlements throughout Israel.
Two coins were found beneath the vessels on the floor of Room 4: a sixth-century CE Byzantine nummus and pantenium.
The Late Phase—The building was renovated by raising the walls and floors. The raising of the wall foundations is clearly visible in the outer faces of the southern (W14288) and western walls (W14073). Broad foundations were added to W14288 built of small fieldstones set on the earlier wall (Fig. 15). As for W14073, courses of small and medium-sized fieldstones were added in the places where the wall had collapsed. So, the wall stones that remained in place together with the new mending stones provided the foundations for the building’s later construction phase; these foundations are slightly wider than the walls of both phases. On the foundations of Walls 14073 and 14288, a single course of the superstructure was preserved, built in a manner similar to the earlier phase. The eastern wall (W14069) was probably still standing since it manifests no structural alterations. The building’s inner walls (e.g., W14071) are narrower in this phase, built on top of the walls of the earlier phase that provided them with broad foundations (Fig. 16).
The collapsed stones of the early phase inside the rooms were covered with a fill of orangish soil overlain, in turn, by grayish soil. The floors of the later phase were set on this fill. In Room 1, a stone-paved floor was uncovered. Room 3 contained a section of a plaster layer (floor bedding?) and two roughly dressed stones, perhaps the remnants of a stone floor. Rooms 2 and 4 may have had tamped earthen floors. They both had square installations in their northwestern corners, built of flat rectangular chalk slabs, possibly used for storage. The building from the later phase had also collapsed. In Room 2, the debris yielded pottery sherds, glass and a stone bowl.
The pottery from the later phase consists of intact vessels and sherds of the Late Byzantine–Umayyad periods, including a cooking pot (Fig. 17:1) and a casserole with a thickened rim (Fig. 17:2) of the sixth–eighth centuries CE, torpedo-type Gaza jars (Majecherek Type 4) of the sixth–seventh centuries CE (Fig. 17:3–6), a flask (Fig. 17:7) made of a buff fabric of the seventh–eighth centuries CE, and a miniature pyxis jar engraved with a geometric pattern (not illustrated here as it was sent for restoration). A similar miniature vessel found at Yavne Yam is dated to the eighth century CE (Fischer and Taxel 2014:223, Fig. 5:10).
The glassware from the building’s later phase dates from the fourth–sixth centuries CE and includes bowls with a hollow folded rim (Fig. 13:3), hollow raised ring bases (Fig. 13:4), simple bottles with fire-rounded rims (Fig. 13:5), a typical late Byzantine mold-blown bottle twisted to form spiral ribs and decorated with horizontal trails around the neck (Fig. 13:6) and the lower part of a double-kohl bottle (Fig. 13:7).
Most of the pottery and glassware from both phases consists of vessels associated with cooking, storage and cosmetics, reflecting the daily life of its occupants.
The Reservoir. Two phases were detected in the reservoir. In the early phase, a square plastered storage pool was dug into the ground (L17120; inner dimensions 3.0 × 3.5 m, depth 1 m), and a water channel (L17105; excavated length 4 m, inner width 0.3 m) led into it from the north. Two of the pool’s walls were excavated to their base (W14075, W17048). They were built of small kurkar fieldstones bonded with grayish (burnt?) mortar mixed with charcoal. Two rounded steps built in the pool’s northeastern corner were also plastered. Adjacent to the upper step, on the pool’s northern wall, was a circular, plastered depression (diam. c. 0.15 m). A square settling pit (0.72 × 0.75 m, depth 0.45 m) installed in the pool’s southwestern corner was plastered like the rest of the pool. The water channel ended at the pool’s western wall. Its walls were built of small fieldstones, and they were probably plastered, but no plaster was preserved. The channel was found full of soil sealed under a layer of potsherds used to pave the adjoining street.
In the later phase, the pool’s sides were raised (up to 0.35 m) with a casting of fieldstones and lime-based mortar, which is wider than the walls in the earlier phase. The pool’s walls and floor were coated with white plaster overlain by pinkish plaster; the floor and the walls are connected with rolka. Some of the pool’s walls contain evidence of plaster repairs. The plaster was cracked and less well preserved along the joints between the earlier and the later phases. A new channel (L17052; excavated length c. 5.8 m, inner width c. 0.24 m) was built on top of Channel 17105. Its sides were made of small fieldstones held together in a calcareous mortar. The channel’s bottom and sides were plastered, and it was covered with large stone slabs that protruded above the street level. The channel continues northward, possibly to a well that has not yet been excavated. The reservoir fell into disuse at the end of the Byzantine period and was converted into a refuse pit.
In the eastern part of the area, a large pile of pottery-workshop refuse was found (L13402; Fig. 6), consisting of Byzantine-period Gaza jar fragments (sixth–seventh centuries CE) and brick material probably derived from dismantled kilns. The full extent of the pile is still unknown. Two probes were excavated into the pile (2.5 × 2.5 m each; Fig. 18). The refuse covered a wall (W13265) built on an east–west alignment, continuing the large building described above. The pile of waste abutted the outer side of the eastern wall of the large building (W13318), evidently rendering this part of the large building obsolete (the part to the east of W13318), and it is not clear at present whether the part of the building to the west of W13318 was still in use when the pottery-workshop waste was dumped.
Domestic Refuse Dump
In the southwest of the area (Area B3; Fig. 6), a domestic waste disposal zone was uncovered. Two layers of refuse were identified, containing fragments of pottery and glass, metal, and copious amounts of animal bones. They were separated by a layer of soil (thickness 0.9 m). Presently, no significant difference between the layers was observed.
The ceramic assemblage of domestic waste comprises cooking ware (Fig. 19:1), numerous Gaza torpedo-jar sherds (Fig. 19:2, 3), southern bag-shaped jars (Fig. 19:4) and candlestick lamps (Fig. 19:5) dating from the Late Byzantine–Umayyad periods (sixth–eighth centuries CE).
The glassware in the domestic waste includes a variety of bowls with hollow, out-folded rims, some very wide and some delicate (Fig. 20:1–4), dating from the fourth–sixth centuries CE; a wine goblet decorated with blue trails above and below the rim (Fig. 20:5); a deformed hollow wine-goblet ring base (Fig. 20:6), which is defected and probably comes from a local workshop operating nearby; a hollow conical lamp stem (Fig. 20:7); a delicate glass bottle with a low folded funnel rim (Fig. 20:8) dating from the fourth–fifth centuries CE; bottles with an upright fire-round rim (Fig. 20:9–11); low concave bottle bases of various sizes and thicknesses (Fig. 20:12, 13), dating from the sixth–seventh centuries CE; and a rim of a large, thick-walled jar that may have been used to store some kind of industrial product (Fig. 20:14) dating from the sixth–eighth centuries CE.
Glass-production waste was found throughout the refuse dump, in both the upper and the lower layers. It is varied and includes raw glass flakes (Fig. 21:1–3), primarily of a bluish-greenish or greenish-yellow hue, often characterized by natural breakage and a triangular cross-section; small lumps of raw glass with kiln wall or floor parts attached to them (Fig. 21:4, 5); lumps of waste, including partially vitrified material (Fig. 21:6) that implies a raw glass industry may have operated in the area; hot glass refuse consisting of droplets in various forms (Fig. 21:7–9); and fragments of heat-distorted vessels (Fig. 21:10), indicating that the site’s industrial area also included glassware production (cf. Khirbat el-Ni‘ana; Gorin-Rosen and Katsnelson 2007:124–129). The finds indicate that a glassware workshop operated nearby, and there may even have been a raw glass-production industry.
Early Islamic Period
The excavation uncovered architectural remains with two construction phases and pottery kilns (Fig. 22). Some of the remains were first exposed in a previous excavation when, among other things, it became evident that the buildings predate the pottery kilns (Nadav-Ziv 2020).
In the north of the area, two buildings were attributed to the earlier phase and may have belonged to an extensive complex. The western building, which consisted of two rooms, was excavated in the past (Nadav-Ziv 2020, Stratum IV, Fig. 3). The eastern building was poorly preserved; its northwestern corner was excavated in the past, whereas its more eastern features (W13026, W13361) were uncovered in the current excavation. Like the western building, the eastern building was aligned east–west (inner dimensions 3.8 × 12.0 m); its eastern end was not excavated and probably lay beyond the excavation limits. The northern wall (W13361) was built of two courses of small kurkar fieldstones; in its western part, roughly dressed stones—probably in secondary use—were incorporated in one of the courses, set across the wall’s width. The eastern and western buildings were joined by W13416. Its foundation consists of fieldstones bonded with red soil, above which a single course of clay bricks was preserved. Wall 13416 abutted W13361 and a wall belonging to the western building (W13173).
In the later phase, W13026 was built on top of the brick course of W13416. Wall 13026 was probably built like W13361, and only small sections of it were preserved in its western part.
A total of thirteen pottery kilns were found in the area. Of these eight were excavated, two in an earlier excavation (Nadav-Ziv 2020: Loci 293, 323) and six in the current excavation (L13465, L14146, L14183, L14185, L14200, L17019). All eight kilns are of the same type, consisting of a rectangular firebox, pillars supporting a firing chamber floor and a domed ceiling usually not preserved. The six kilns uncovered in the current excavation were not equally well preserved. The best-preserved kiln was L17019 (Fig. 23), in which the firebox, the firing chamber floor and part of the domed ceiling were in place. When the kiln fell out of use, it was converted into a refuse pit. Pottery found in the firebox included fragments of high and sometimes swollen necked jars (Fig. 24:1–3). These jars are characterized by a bag-shaped body decorated with horizontal combing or geometric motifs. They are sometimes found in larger sizes, like the zir jars found in Judea. They probably emerged in the Umayyad period, replacing the southern bag-shaped jars that were typical of the region until the Late Byzantine–Umayyad periods. The current excavation uncovered a production center for these jars, which operated throughout the Early Islamic period. There is no clear typology as yet, but based on other excavations in the coastal area and the southern Shephelah, they can be dated to the eighth–tenth centuries CE. Together with these jars, other jars from the firebox of L17019 include Gaza Ware torpedo-type jars (Fig. 24:4), southern bag-shaped jars (Fig. 24:5), a zir-type jar (Fig. 24:6) and body sherds of northern bag-shaped jars decorated with white grain-washed (Fig. 24:7, 8). The firebox of L17019 also yielded roughly worked fired-clay rings bearing potters’ fingerprints (Fig. 24:9). Rough pottery rings of this type are common in all the kilns at Yavne, and they may have been placed beneath the jars to raise them from the firing chamber’s floor. Other kilns of the same type and from the same period were found in an excavation to the west of Tel Yavne (Permit No. A-5612; U. ‘Ad, pers. comm.).
To the south of W13361, in the eastern building, a waste pit that probably belonged to a potter’s workshop (L13400) was found, containing Early Islamic pottery. The ceramic assemblage includes bag-shaped jars with a high neck (Fig. 25:1–3) and and lids of cooking vessels (Fig. 25:4). Identical bag-shaped jars were found in nearby kilns (e.g. L17019 in the current excavation and L323 in a previous excavation; Nadav-Ziv 2020), and they attest to local production during this period.
Near the opening to kiln L14200, a juglet was found. It contained a hoard of seven Abbasid coins, all gold dinars: four dinars from the early Abbasid period (762–806 CE), two dinars from the North African Aghlabid dynasty (in modern-day Tunis; 814–837 CE), and a single worn dinar of the caliph Al-Mutawakkil (847–861 CE).
Four excavation squares opened in the northern part of Area D yielded pottery sherds of the Iron Age, Persian, Hellenistic, and Byzantine periods but no architectural remains.
Area D extends on the northern slope of a kurkar hill covered with hamra soil. On the hilltop stands an old building with concrete floors that probably served as a well house. The building was not documented due to its dilapidated state. Excavations to the north of the building uncovered sections of an Ottoman irrigation channel that probably extended northward from the building and then turned east (Figs. 26, 27). Remnants of secondary channels that branched from the main channel were found in several places. The channel’s northern part was the best preserved, and two phases of plastering were identified. In the first phase, the channel was coated with grayish plaster, and, in the second phase, its inside was coated with pinkish plaster. Deer hoof prints were noted on a section of the channel’s floor, created when the plaster was still damp, immediately after the channel’s construction.
The current and previous excavations indicate that the area south of Tel Yavne was part of an extensive industrial zone spanning many periods. During the Persian period, a large winery and pottery production kilns operated at the site. There was also a pottery production industry in the area during the Byzantine period: The remains of a large kiln were discovered in a previous excavation (Yannai 2014), and, in Area B, the current excavation uncovered the remains of two buildings, installations and copious amounts of pottery-kiln waste. It is not clear whether the installations in question served pottery production or some other industrial process. The large building’s plan and the adjacent pool suggest it is likely to have been industrial. The finds from the western building are domestic, and it may have constituted living quarters for workers employed in the large building. The buildings’ plans, the street between them and the reservoir with a water channel leading to it show that considerable thought and planning were invested in this industrial zone’s construction. Apparently, it was a large industrial area, built in an orderly and planned manner, probably by the authorities of the time. Yannai proposes that, following the earthquake of 659 CE, the large kiln became obsolete (Yannai 2014). Evidence of this earthquake has not yet been identified in the current excavation.
Either way, it seems, the pottery industry in Yavne soon recovered and continued into the Early Islamic period. In the current excavation, 13 pottery kilns and two structures were dated to this period. Alongside the pottery industry, the current excavation also discovered waste of a glassware workshop, indicating a glass industry at the site.
Remains of Ottoman period water channels, discovered in Area D, are probably evidence of farming by the Arab village that was located on the tell.