Stratum IV
Remains of a dwelling from the Abbasid period (c. 100 sq m; Fig. 2), which consisted of two rooms (R1, R2), a courtyard (C1) and a water reservoir (P1), were discovered. The structure was built of medium and large limestone ashlars. The walls were founded on bedrock and on a layer of fill, which contained potsherds from the Umayyad and Abbasid periods. Remains of white plaster were preserved on some of the walls. The building’s main entrance was set in the western wall (W20) and it led to Room R1. A staircase, surviving by three limestone steps, was exposed next to the W20 and north of the opening (Fig. 3); it led to the first floor or the roof.
Room R1 was only partly excavated (4.5 × 9.5 m). Its walls (width 0.55 m) were preserved to a maximum of 2.14 m high. The room was partitioned by two pillars (1 × 1 m, preserved height 2.14 m) into an eastern and western space. Two openings (width 0.8 m) were set in the room’s northern wall (W14); one led to Courtyard C1 and the other accessed Room R2 (Fig. 4). The floor of the room was crushed chalk mixed with ash and small stones; it was laid on a fill of soil and stone that contained potsherds from the Umayyad and Abbasid periods. The remains of a round tabun (diam. 0.4 m) that was built on the floor were exposed in the northwestern corner of the room.
Room R2 (2.2 × 3.3 m). The walls of this room (width c. 0.6 m) were preserved to a maximum of 1.74 m high. The floor consisted of well-dressed medium-sized limestone pavers. A limestone bench (length 3 m, width 0.3 m, height 0.4 m) was built on the floor next to the room’s northern wall (W12). A destruction layer, composed of stones, some ash and potsherds from the Abbasid period, was found on the floor.
Courtyard C1. The northern wall of the courtyard (W12) was founded on bedrock. The bottom part of the wall was built of fine ashlar construction and its upper part consisted of coarsely dressed ashlars. The courtyard’s floor was composed of large limestone pavers that were overlain with a destruction layer and some ash and potsherds from the Abbasid period.
Water Reservoir P1 (1.7 × 1.7 m, depth c. 5 m). The walls of the reservoir, founded on bedrock, were built of large ashlars and preserved to a maximum of 4 m high. The reservoir’s floor, also founded on bedrock, was composed of crushed chalk. Two feeder channels (width 0.2 m, depth c. 0.25 m) in the reservoir’s eastern and western walls conveyed water to the installation. A layer of silt that contained a few potsherds, dating to the Abbasid period, overlay the floor.