Second season 2013

Care figures final - small

Ein el-Jarba season 2013/2

In the first two seasons of excavation at Ein el-Jarba, five 5 x 5 m squares were excavated. Six strata can be distinguished. Stratum I represents the topsoil. Strata II, III and IV date to the EB IB and stratum V and VI to the Early Chalcolithic – Wadi Rabah occupation of the site. The phasing has been in some cases based on direct stratigraphic evidence, while in other cases the phase ascription could only be based on absolute elevations and are thus tentative. Virgin soil was reached in two squares. The average accumulation of archaeology strata is around 1.5 m.

Stratum II, III and IV: Early Bronze Age IB

The Early Bronze Age IB has three distinct subphases. The earliest stratum IV consists of one massive wall (L.1012), an abutting paved surface and a rather ephemeral, parallel wall (L.1040). In the following stratum III, oval house B was uncovered, which seems to have cut the previous structure. House C to its north should be ascribed to the same stratum. In the latest stratum II, a well preserved domestic unit (House A) with rounded corners and a central pillar base has been uncovered with a rich ceramic assemblage in situ. House A cuts into House B from stratum III, and thus clearly postdates this structure. Further, silo (L. 1049) and a pit (L.1038) should be ascribed to the same phase. A burial (L.1078) adjacent to House A probably dates to the last phase of the EB occupation, but has yet not been dated absolutely.

Special finds beside the characteristic ceramic assemblage from the Early Bronze Age strata (holemouth jars, shelf handles, PUC and high frequencies of red slip) include a bronze knife or sickle, two fragments of zoomorphic figurines and a fragment of a ceramic house model with painted decoration (!).

Stratum V and VI: Early Chalcolithic

The Early Chalcolithic occupation yielded two strata. In stratum VI a round installation in a plastered floor has been found (L.1102), associated with a rich ceramic assemblage, and a jar in situ. In the following stratum V, a triangular stone build platform (L.1032) and a beaten earth floor has been unearthed. Reconstructable Wadi Rabah vessels have been found in both strata.

The ceramic assemblage of the Wadi Rabah strata is somewhat surprising. Beside the “classic Wadi Rabah” shapes of holemouth jars, chalices, bowls and lids, several unknown shapes have been found. Decoration with burnish, incisions and painted decoration are very frequent. Special finds include 28 fragments of obsidian, 27 sling stones, a wide range of discs, beads and shells.

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