Square D4 yielded the remains of a wall (W101; 0.5 m wide, c. 4 m long, 0.6 m high) built of medium-sized fieldstones without mortar and preserved to a height of four courses (Fig. 2: Section 1–1). Traces of whitish gray plaster (2–3 cm thick) were extant on its western face. A layer of black soil (L107) excavated beside the wall contained modern debris and a few potsherds from the Byzantine, Early Islamic and Ottoman periods (Fig. 3). A patch of a lime layer (L108; 0.3 m thick), whose outer perimeter was not determined, was uncovered in the north of the square.
Square D6. A pit grave (T102; 2.5 m long, c. 1 m wide; Figs. 4, 5) dug into the hamra soil contained the remains of an articulated skeleton, indicating that this is a primary burial. The deceased was placed in an east–west direction, with the head in the east and the legs extended, possibly slightly tilted to the right. The left arm was folded; the right arm had completely disintegrated. Although the bones were broken, it was evident that they were robust, well-built and showing signs of developed muscles, representing a mature individual. Three maxilla teeth exhibited varying degrees of wear: a lateral incisor exhibiting dentine exposure, a canine tooth showing abrasion that had formed a slight dentine cup, and a premolar with worn enamel. Based on the degree of tooth erosion, the individual was estimated to have been 20–35 years old (Hillson 1986:176–201). Six pottery vessels were placed as grave goods near the head of the deceased: two bowls, two jars and two dipper juglets. The bowls have a ring base and a carinated profile (Fig. 6:1, 2). A very large, partially preserved jar (Fig. 7; not drawn) contained a characteristic MB II dipper juglet (Fig. 6:3). Fragments of another dipper juglet with a pointed base (Fig. 6:4) lay next to an almost intact, smaller jar with a flattened base and two handles, lacking only the rim (Fig. 6:5). The vessels date the grave to the MB IIB.
To the south of the tomb and on a slightly higher level, part of an installation built of small stones was uncovered (L104; 1.35 m long, 0.55 m wide, 0.35 m deep). It was coated with gray plaster (2–3 cm thick). The black soil inside the installation (L105) contained a few potsherds dating from late Iron Age II: a casserole with a thickened rim (Fig. 6:6), a jar with a plain rim (Fig. 6:7) and a jar or jug with a ridged rim (Fig. 6:8).
Based on the pottery assemblage, the tomb is dated to the MB IIB. It can thus be associated with the extensive necropolis uncovered to the north of the current excavation, on the northern side of Ha-‘Az
ma’ut Street (Jakoel and Be’eri 2016)
, where 94 tombs from this period were excavated. The tomb may mark the cemetery’s southern boundary. The plastered installation was only partially excavated, and it is not possible to determine its function or the date of its construction; it may have fallen into disuse by the end of the Iron Age. Finds from the late Iron Age are hardly known from previous excavations in the vicinity. The wall exposed was probably part of an Ottoman-period building.