In May–June 2015, a trial excavation was conducted in the ʽEvron Landfill east of Kibbutz ʽEvron (Permit No. A-7414; map ref. 210853/766049), prior to expansion. The excavation, undertaken on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority and financed by Kibbutz ʽEvron, was directed by M. Shemer (photography) and O. Barzilai, with the assistance of Y. Yaʽaqobi and B. Zidan (administration), M. Kahan (surveying, drafting and GPS), C. Amit (studio photography), Y. Enzel, A. Matmon and O. Crouvi (geology), R. Shaar and Y. Ebert(paleomagnetism analyses), and a team of laborers from Kafr Manda. Trial trenches were conducted by A. Yaroshevich at the site prior to the excavation.
ʽEvron Landfill is located in the western Galilee, approximately 600 m north of Nah
al Bet Ha-ʽEmeq (Fig. 1). Prehistoric sites discovered in the area in the past—Zinat, the Pardes and the Quarry—yielded animal bones, flint items and stone tools that are characteristic of all the phases of the Lower Paleolithic Acheulian culture. the flint assemblage from Zinat was ascribed to the Upper Acheulian culture (Stekelis 1950
). Research at the Pardes site was very partial, and included mainly surface collection of items by members of Kibbutz ʽEvron. The Quarry site—the most famous and important of the ʽEvron sites—was excavated in 1976–1977 and again in 1985 (Gilead and Ronen 1977
; Chazan 2013
). The excavators dated the site based on a comparison of the lithic assemblage with other Acheulian
assemblages in the vicinity (Gilead and Ronen 1977
) and on an analysis of the species represented in the animal bones at the site (Tchernov et al. 1994
). These studies date the Quarry site to 1.0–0.5 million ybp (Ronen 1991
; Tchernov et al. 1994
). The geological section exposed at the Quarry site was used to reconstruct the area’s stratigraphy, which incorporates the remainder of the ʽEvron sites in a relative chronology. Accordingly, the activity at the Pardes site took place prior to activity at the Zinat site but later than the Quarry site. Based on radiometric and paleomagnetism testing carried out in the early 2000s in a field next to the Quarry site, the age of the Quarry site is now estimated at 1.0–0.8 million ybp (Porat and Ronen 2002
; Ron et al. 2003
In the 1990s, the quarry was converted into a landfill. The prehistoric site in the quarry was buried, and its exact location is unknown. In October 2014, extensive earthworks (c. 40 dunams, up to 19 m deep) were undertaken to the north of the landfill areas in order to expand it. The work was closely supervised all along the way by IAA inspectors. At a depth of 9–11 m below the surface, animal bones, flint items and stone tools characteristic of the Acheulian culture appeared in a layer of reddish clay. Consequently, a series of trial trenches were excavated using a backhoe in hope of identifying the source of these items. Although the trial trenches yielded clusters of artifacts, no clear archaeological horizon could be identified. The current excavation sought to explore these artifact clusters so as to locate the archaeological layer they may have belonged to. The excavation included a geological study that aimed at understanding the stratigraphic sequence and formation processes of the site and possibly even dating the strata.
Chazan M. 2013. Butchering with Small Tools: The Implications of the Evron Quarry Assemblage for the Behavior of Homo Erectus. Antiquity
Gilead D. and Ronen A. 1977. Acheulian Industries from ‘Evron on the Western Galilee Coastal Plain. Eretz-Israel 13:56–86.
Porat N. and Ronen A. 2002. Luminescence and ESR Age Determinations of the Lower Paleolithic Site Evron Quarry, Israel. Advances in ESR Applications 18:123–130.
Prausnitz M. 1969. The Sequence of Early to Middle Paleolithic Flint Industries along the Galilean Littoral. IEJ 19:129–136.
Ron H., Porat N., Ronen A., Tchernov E., and Horwitz L.K. 2003. Magnetostratigraphy of the Evron Member—Implications for the Age of the Middle Acheulian Site of Evron Quarry. Journal of Human Evolution 44:633–639.
Ronen A. 1991. The Lower Palaeolithic Site Evron-Quarry in Western Galilee, Israel. Sonderveröffentlichungen Geologisches Institut der Universität zu Köln 82:187–212.
Stekelis M. 1950. ʽEvron. Bulletin of the Department of Antiquities 2:29–30 (Hebrew).
Tchernov E., Horwitz L.K., Ronen A. and Lister A. 1994. The Faunal Remains from Evron Quarry in Relation to Other Lower Paleolithic Hominid Sites in the Southern Levant. Quaternary Research 42(3):328–339.