In the current excavation nine squares were opened in which a three-room building (Fig. 1) that dates to the seventh–tenth centuries CE was exposed. The building included a large central room (L130), another large room to its south (L113) and a small room to its west (L129). The plan of the building is incomplete; no openings were found in its walls and no floors were found in its rooms.
The walls of the rooms (central: 3.50 × 4.75 m; southern: 3.5 × 3.9 m, wall width 0.60–0.80 m; western: 1.55 × 4.75 m, wall width 0.60–0.80 m; Fig. 2) were built of medium-sized fieldstones bonded with gray mortar (width 0.6–0.8 m, preserved height c. 0.75 m). They were founded on hamra soil. A row of foundations stones was exposed in the northern side of the southern wall (W1) of the central room. In the eastern side of the room a round feature (diam. 1.5 m) was exposed made of fieldstones and gray bonding material; this was probably the base of some sort of installation. A large quantity of potsherds from the Early Islamic period (eighth–tenth centuries CE) and fragments of glass vessels and metal artifacts, including a kohl stick, were discovered in the room. Similar artifacts were discovered in the southern room, but nails, coins, parts of a bronze necklace and beads were also found there.
A floor of compacted kurkar granules and chalk (Loci 126–128) was exposed east of the central and southern rooms. The floor abutted Wall 11 in the north. It seems that the southern part of the floor (L126) originally abutted Wall 9, but the latter was robbed for almost its entire length, except for a tiny section that formed a corner with Wall 6.
The foundation of a rounded building or installation made of fieldstones and bonded with gray mortar (L117; Fig. 4) was partially excavated in the area south of Wall 6 (ext. diam. 3.15 m; int. diam. 0.7 m).
West of W5 a pit (L121) that contained modern finds was exposed. The pit cut through a wall stump (W13) that was oriented differently than the walls of the building. No finds were discovered when it was exposed; the relation between it and Wall 5 is unclear.
The ceramic finds discovered in the excavation date to the Early Islamic period (seventh–tenth centuries CE) and include bowl dated to the seventh century CE (Fig. 5:3), a bowl from the eighth–ninth centuries CE (Fig. 5:8), bowls from the eighth–tenth centuries CE (Fig. 5:2, 4, 6, 7), a coarse bowl decorated with combing (Fig. 5:1), a glazed bowl (Fig. 5:5), a fine-ware bowl (Fig. 5:9), buff-ware jugs (Fig. 5:10–12, 18, 19), a saqiye jug (Fig. 5:11), cooking pots (Fig. 5:13) and jars (Fig. 14–17).
Three coins were found in the building, two on the floor of the western room (IAA 97953, 97954) and one in the southern room (IAA 97952). The coins date to the ninth century CE.
Metal artifacts include fragments of earrings, decorations and beads that originally hung from a loop and a bronze kohl stick. The earrings from the southern room (L113) are made of a bronze wire bent in the shape of a loop to which two tiny metal loops were soldered. A wire twisted like a spring and flat beads that were cut from a shell and perforated were suspended from the loop. A gold earring of this type was discovered in a jewelry hoard from the Temple Mount excavations that was dated to the Fatimid period (Qadmoniot 62–63:88–91).
The beads are of different types, mainly small balls made of shell, clay and pearl and a fragment of a large glass bead decorated with embedded wire.
A bronze cosmetic spoon from the western room (L129; length 11.5 m) has a long rod-like handle, one end of which is pointed and the other end with a tiny spoon that is slightly deformed as a result of use. Near the spoon is an engraved decoration that is part of the casting of the spoon. At the rear of the spoon is an incised cross-hatch decoration that is probably a later addition. Similar cosmetic spoons dated to the seventh–eighth centuries CE were found at sites such as Hammat Gader, near Jerusalem, and Kafr Jinnis, near Ben-Gurion Airport.
Thirteen diagnostic fragments of glass vessels in a poor state of preservation were found in the excavation, all dating to the eighth century CE. Among them is a fragment of a thickened base of a bowl or large bottle made of bluish-green glass. It is decorated with a combination of yellowish-brown glass trails added to form a bifurcated pattern on the bottom part of the vessel and a pinched trail in the same color of the vessel arranged in a wavy pattern around the circumference of the base (Fig. 6). This fragment probably belonged to a decorated lamp bowl that is characteristic of the Umayyad period.