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The Tel Burna Archaeological Project Dr. Itzhaq Shai.

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Presentation on theme: "The Tel Burna Archaeological Project Dr. Itzhaq Shai."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Tel Burna Archaeological Project Dr. Itzhaq Shai



4 Previous Research Aharoni and Amiran Dagans Survey of the Shephelah – which includes this site Kohs Survey No Excavations Conducted at the Site

5 Tel Burna – Tell Bornât

6 Tel Burna = Biblical Libnah? Then Joshua and all Israel with him moved on from Makkedah to Libnah and attacked it (Josh. 10: 29) In the western foothills: …Libnah, Ether, Ashan… (Josh. 15: 33-42) So to the descendants of Aaron the priest they gave Hebron (a city of refuge for one accused of murder), Libnah (Josh. 21: 13)

7 To this day Edom has been in rebellion against Judah. Libnah revolted at the same time (2 Kgs. 8: 22) Jehoahaz was twenty-three years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem three months. His mother's name was Hamutal daughter of Jeremiah; she was from Libnah (2 Kgs. 23: 31) Zedekiah was twenty-one years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem eleven years. His mother's name was Hamutal daughter of Jeremiah; she was from Libnah (2 Kgs. 24: 18)

8 Possible Locations for Libnah Tel Goded Tel Zayit Horvat Lavnin Tel Burna –Location near Horvat Eter, Mareshah –On Border with Philistia –Iron Age occupation and fortifications –Evidence for Sennacheribs Campaign –7 th Century Remains

9 The Survey Uziel J. and Shai I. 2010. The Tel Burna Surface Survey. Tel Aviv 37: 242-260

10 Research Goals Developing survey methodology for tel sites, using comparative survey data collected through various methods Ground truthing survey results through excavation – to confirm/refute results of different methods of surveying Dating features visible on the surface Defining the effects of erosion, human activity, site depletion

11 The 2009 Survey Season Total collection of artifacts from surface as well as documentation of architectural features Division of site according to topographic fields Attempt to define periods of settlement, size per period, and potential areas of excavation

12 Approx. 16 Hectares of Surface Scatter

13 EB MB LB Ir IIr II Distribution of Artifacts per Period Ca. 3 hectares Ca. 5 hectares Ca. 6 hectares Ca. 2 hectares Ca. 8 hectares

14 Percentage of Diagnostic Ceramics According to Period

15 Comparison of Distribution Area and Sherd Counts

16 Lamashtu Plaque from Nahal Guvrin (near Tel Burna) – Published by M. Cogan in IEJ 1995

17 Survey Conclusions Settlement in EB, MB, LB and Iron I-II Large LB Settlement Small Iron I settlement – including Philistine pottery Iron II most significant, possibly fortified The Ups and Downs of the Settlement Over Time

18 Excavations: Goals after 3 Seasons Micro: –Settlement History of the Site Periods, size, character of settlement –Dating Architectural Elements E.g. fortifications, silos, walls on surface

19 Excavations: Goals after 3 Seasons Macro: –Survey methodology Shovel Pits Surveying –Use of Landscape Mapping and documenting agricultural installations, caves –Studying Ancient Borders Comparisons of Material Culture –Archaeology and the Community Open Excavation Cleaning Agricultural Installations Conservation of Chosen Features –Late Bronze Age Cult

20 Shovel Pits

21 Agricultural Installations Around the Site



24 Area B Summit Center Eastern Section




28 21 Squares Thus Far LB IIB (13 th Century BCE) Iron Age IIA (9 th Century BCE) Iron Age IIB (8 th Century BCE) Iron Age IIC (7 th Century BCE) Persian Period

29 LB IIB Area B – No Iron Age Settlement Above! 13 th Century BCE Cypriot and Mycenaean Imports Bedrock after 0.5 meter Some unique finds indicate unique activity!

30 Area B – LB IIB

31 Noses


33 Cylindrical Seal Cup and Saucer

34 Cypriot Imported Pottery

35 Unique Cypriot Vessel

36 Iron Age IIA Surface outside the fortifications Installation on the inside of the inner wall –Loom weights –Hand Burnished pottery

37 Iron Age IIA


39 installation

40 Iron Age IIB Settlement in all areas of summit Stamped Handles Wheel Burnishing

41 Iron Age IIB



44 9 th -8 th Centuries BCE Pottery from Around the Fortifications


46 Hand and Wheel Burnish

47 Stamped Handles

48 Judean Pillar Figurine

49 7 th Century BCE Primarily Silos with small patches of architecture related to them

50 7 th Century BCE Pottery

51 7 th Century BCE




55 The Fortification System

56 Fortifications


58 7 th century Silo

59 Persian Period Patchy Architecture on the basis of Iron Age Walls Boulders in secondary use

60 Persian Period


62 All Ages are Welcome! Join us to the Summer 2013 Season June 2 nd – June 21 st

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