In January 2016, a trial excavation was conducted in Kafr Yasif (Permit No. A-7595; map ref. 215438–87/761808–64; Fig. 1), prior to construction. The excavation, on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority, was directed by A. Zedan (photography), with the assistance of Y. Yaʽaqobi (administration), R. Liran (surveying and drafting), Y. Lerer and D. Syon (metal detection), K. Covello-Paran (scientific guidance), N. Getzov (pottery reading) and H. Tahan-Rosen (pottery drawing).
Two parallel walls (W101—exposed length 4 m, overall length 7.5 m; W104—length c. 2.5 m; Figs. 2, 3), preserved to a height of a single course, were exposed 3.2 m apart. The walls were founded on soft limestone bedrock; hollows in the bedrock were filled with small stones to level the area. Each wall was built of two rows of stones: large, roughly hewn stones (0.2 × 0.4 × 0.5 m) constituting its outer face, and fieldstones (0.1 × 0.1 × 0.1 m) making up its inner face. The walls probably belonged to two adjacent structures, separated by an alley (L105). The accumulated soil on both sides of W101 (L102) and north of W104 (L103, L105) yielded pottery dating mostly from the Byzantine period: three bowls (Fig. 4:1–3), a krater (Fig. 4:4), a frying pan (Fig. 4:5) and three jars (Fig. 4:6–8). Also found were several vessel fragments from the Roman period, including two jars (Fig. 4:9, 10), and from the Hellenistic period (not drawn), as well as a glass bowl (Fig. 4:11) and lumps of glass.
Four greenish blue lumps of industrial glass debris were discovered near W101 and W104: three lumps of furnace debris mixed with glass and a small chunk of raw glass. Remains of furnaces used in the manufacture of glass were found in most of the previous excavations at Kafr Yasif, indicating the presence of an extensive glass industry during the Byzantine period and the beginning of the Umayyad period (fifth–seventh centuries CE; Abu Raya 2010
; Syon and Stern 2014
). Similar finds were also found in salvage excavations at Ah
ihud (Porat and Getzov 2010
). A fragment of a glass bowl (Fig. 4:11), characterized by a thickened horizontal ridge below its rim, was found while dismantling W101. This bowl type is very common in both settlement and burial assemblages from the Galilee, dating from the fourth century CE; in several places it continued to appear at the beginning of the fifth century CE. Similar bowls were discovered in the glass workshop at Jalame, at H
a and at other sites in Israel (Gorin-Rosen 2009
:83–84, Fig. 2.51:2, 6).
Frankel R., Getzov N., Aviam M. and Degani A. 2001. Settlement Dynamics and Regional Diversity in Ancient Upper Galilee: Archaeological Survey of Upper Galilee (IAA Reports 14). Jerusalem.
Gorin-Rosen Y. 2009. The Glass Vessels from Strata 9–6. In N. Getzov, D. Avshalom-Gorni, Y. Gorin-Rosen, E.J. Stern, D. Syon and A. Tatcher. Horbat ‘Uza; The 1991 Excavations II: The Late Periods (IAA Reports 42). Jerusalem. Pp. 78–98.
Guérin V. 1880. Description géographique, historique et archéologique de la Palestine: Galilee Tome Deuxiéme. Paris.
Syon D. and Stern E.J. 2014. Excavations at the Dar el-Gharbiya Neighborhood at Kafr Yasif: A Crusader Estate in the Territory of ‛Akko. ‘Atiqot 79:233–261.