Area S
A half square was excavated and a floor bedding (L183; Fig. 3), built of small fieldstones with light gray mortar and numerous potsherds between them, was exposed. Based on the ceramic finds (not drawn), the floor was dated to the Late Byzantine–beginning of the Early Islamic periods (seventh–eighth centuries CE).
Area P
Ten squares were opened, subdivided into three sub-areas: south, center and north. Two strata (1, 2) that dated to the Late Byzantine–beginning of the Early Islamic periods (seventh–eighth centuries CE) were exposed in the south and center sub-areas. Building foundations were exposed in Stratum 1 and remains of a kiln, which was negated by the walls of later buildings, were revealed in Stratum 2. A refuse pit that contained numerous fragments of pottery vessels dating to the Persian and Hellenistic periods (fifth–fourth centuries BCE) was exposed in the north sub-area.
The South Sub-Area. Two dwelling complexes were exposed in Stratum 1. The first complex (Squares A7, AB6, C5; Fig. 4) consisted of two partly exposed rooms that had survived by three wall foundations, built of small fieldstones without mortar. Wall 155 (length 10.5 m, width 0.6 m), oriented northeast-southwest, was bonded with Wall 187 (length 2.1 m, width 0.6 m) and formed a right angle corner (L185). Wall 156 (length 1.5 m; width 0.6 m), oriented northwest-southeast, joined Wall 155 and formed two corners with it (L164, L169). It seems that W155 was an exterior wall of the building. Fragments of pottery vessels were exposed in Corner 185, including a Fine Byzantine Ware bowl dating to the seventh–eighth centuries CE (Fig. 5:1) and a cooking bowl dating to the sixth–seventh centuries CE (Fig. 5:2).
The only remains of the second complex (Squares C4, C3) were those of a room (L124). Two of its surviving walls were constructed in an identical manner to the walls of the aforementioned building: Wall 107 (length 6 m, width c. 0.6 m) oriented northeast-southwest and Wall 116 (length 1.5 m, width 0.6 m) oriented northwest-southeast. The pottery vessels discovered in the room included a Late Roman C bowl dating to the sixth–seventh centuries (Fig. 5:3). A floor (L118) that abutted the wall in the southern corner of the room overlay a cooking-pot lid dating to the fifth–sixth centuries CE (Fig. 5:4) and a Byzantine lamp from the sixth–seventh centuries CE (Fig. 5:5).
A refuse pit (L159) was exposed in Sq B3, located west of the room complex. The pit was sealed with medium-sized fieldstones and contained an abundance of pottery vessels, including an African Red Slip bowl dating to the fifth–sixth centuries CE (Fig. 5:6) and a krater dating to the seventh century CE (Fig. 5:7). A lamp (Fig. 5:8) dating to the seventh–eighth centuries CE was also recovered from the square.
A floor (L108; min. dimensions 5.9 × 6.1 m) in a poor state of preservation was exposed southwest of Refuse Pit 159 (Squares B4 and B5). It consisted of two layers, a foundation of densely packed medium-sized fieldstones without mortar and an upper layer of large flat fieldstones, including a grinding stone in secondary use. The pottery vessels discovered beneath the floor included a frying pan dating to the sixth–seventh centuries CE (Fig. 5: 9) and a krater dating to the seventh–eighth centuries CE (Fig. 5:10). The floor can be dated to the end of the Byzantine–beginning of the Early Islamic periods.
The exposed remains of Stratum 2 included a pottery kiln (L140; max. diam. 1.1 m) below Wall 116; the use of the installation was negated when the wall was built. Body potsherds from the Byzantine period were collected from the kiln and it should probably be dated to this period.
The Center Sub-Area. A poorly preserved wall (W127; length 5 m, width 0.6 m; Fig. 6), oriented northeast-southwest and built of small fieldstones, was exposed in Sq B2. Based on the ceramic finds it can be dated to the Byzantine period. The alignment of the wall is similar to that of the walls in the south sub-area and the general planning of the settlement can be discerned.
The North Sub-Area. A large refuse pit (L141, L161, L171, L172; Fig. 7) was exposed in Sq C1. It contained a wealth of pottery vessels, including fragments of holemouth jars from Iron Age II (Fig. 8:1), bowls from the Persian–Hellenistic periods (Fig. 8:2), jar fragments from the Persian (Fig. 8:3, 4) and Hellenistic (Fig. 8:5) periods and amphorae from the Hellenistic period (Fig. 8:6, 7). A probe excavated in the middle of the square (L160) revealed black and red burnt patches that were probably related to a kiln.
Area F
Two squares (F2, F4; Fig. 9) were opened in the east, 50 m apart. Remains of a water channel (L123; length c. 2 m, width 0.6 m) were exposed in Square F4; it is characteristic of the Ottoman period in areas with orchards and is built like the channel exposed in Area L (below). Meager ceramic finds dating to the Late Ottoman period and the time of the British Mandate were discovered alongside it. A coin that dates to the Byzantine period (395–408 CE; IAA 120619) was also found in the square.
A rectangular installation (L134; length 2.4 m, width 1.2 m) with rounded corners, dug into a layer of hamra, was exposed in Sq F2. Its western side and bottom were lined with medium-sized fieldstones. Hamra silt mixed with numerous medium-sized fieldstones was excavated inside the installation and it therefore seems that it was originally lined on all sides and was probably even covered. Meager finds, no diagnostic potsherds, and two flint fragments, were discovered in the installation, which was probably intended for dry storage.
Area L
A single square was opened and an Ottoman irrigation channel (L151; min. length 4 m, inner width 0.3 m, outer width 0.6 m; Fig. 10) was exposed along its eastern side; the channel was well-preserved but had no covering slabs. The sides of the channel were built of light gray elongated kurkar slabs (average length c. 1 m) and were coated on the inside with a layer of thick white plaster.
A wall foundation (W173) that continued to the southeast and a floor (L166; 1.77 × 2.88 m) that abutted it were exposed in the west of the square; both were poorly preserved and built of small fieldstones without mortar.
The ceramic finds included a pithos dating to the seventh–eighth centuries CE (Fig. 5:11), a locally produced bowl from the seventh century CE (Fig. 5:12) and a Gaza jar dating to the fifth century CE (Fig. 5:13).
The excavation findings show that the site was first inhabited in the Iron Age and was rural in nature until the Hellenistic period. Following a settlement hiatus in the Roman period, it was reoccupied and reached the height of its prosperity in the Byzantine and Early Islamic periods. After another settlement hiatus in the Middle Ages, the site was used for agriculture in the late Ottoman period. Based on recently conducted archaeological surveys (I. Taxel Map of Yavne; not published), it seems that occupation in the region consisted of two settlement phases; the first from the Middle Bronze Age until the Umayyad period, and the second, after a gap, from the Mamluk period to the modern era. The results of the excavation seem to match this picture.