Area C
Five strata were identified (Fig. 1).
Stratum 5: Bedrock was exposed in the western half of the excavation area. Dark brown soil that included a small amount of potsherds from the ninth century BCE had accumulated on top of bedrock. No walls ascribed to this period were found and the ceramic finds were rather meager. Hence, it can be assumed that the potsherds were swept here from the immediate vicinity. During the previous excavation seasons, remains of a building that was dated to the ninth century BCE were exposed.
Stratum 4: The foundations of two fieldstone-built walls, founded on bedrock, were revealed in the southwest of the area (Fig. 2). The walls themselves and the floor that abutted them did not survive. The few potsherds found next to them dated to the Early Roman period.
Stratum 3: A building from the Late Roman–Early Byzantine period, which was built according to the Hauranian tradition utilizing only roughly hewn basalt stones, was exposed (Fig. 3). The building included a courtyard, partly paved with flat fieldstones, and rooms on either side of it.
A staircase was built next to the western wall of the courtyard; three of the steps had survived (Figs. 4, 5). The staircase was erected above the pavement and therefore postdated it. Numerous fragments of Golan pithoi that dated to the Byzantine period were found near the courtyard wall. The top of the foundation course of the walls served as a threshold for the building’s entrance and the openings of the rooms, whose tamped-earth floors were one step lower than the thresholds. Ovens were found in three of the rooms. The pillar of an arch in which an inverted arch console was incorporated (Fig. 6) was found in one of the rooms; this was the only ashlar stone found in the excavation. The ceramic finds dated to the fourth–fifth centuries CE.
Two coarsely dressed column drums of different heights were found ex situ in an alley at the western end of the excavation (Fig. 7); they may have been used to support the roof. Pairs of similar columns were found in the Hermon, which S. Dar identified as a representation of Iturian deities. Since no similar columns were found in the Golan to date, it is questionable whether they can be attributed to Iturian cult.
Stratum 2: The building from the previous stratum continued to be used, although a few modifications were made to it: several walls were added, one of the openings was blocked and the floors were raised and covered part of the ovens (Fig. 8). A considerable amount of destruction was discerned in this stratum, possibly the result of an earthquake; the courtyard and the rooms were filled with collapsed building stones. The artifacts from this stratum dated to the fifth century CE.
Stratum 1: Following the destruction of Stratum 2, only the eastern part of the building was repaired. A wide wall of large fieldstones, abutted by an earthen floor, was built. A complete cooking pot on the floor, dating to the sixth century CE, was surrounded on the east and north by stone collapse that miraculously did not damage it (Fig. 9).