During December 2002, a trial excavation was conducted at the corner of Jehoshaphat and David Noy Streets in ‘Akko (Permit No. A-3794; map ref. 20754–6/75914–5), following the discovery of ancient remains in backhoe-dug probe trenches. The excavation, on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority, was directed by A. Thatcher, with the assistance of V. Essman and V. Pirsky (surveying), G. Finkielsztejn (Rhodian handles), D. Syon (numismatics), and H. Abu- ‘Uqsa, Y. Lerer and E. Stern.
Mechanical equipment removed the surface layer (thickness 0.8 m) of two squares and three main periods were discerned: Hellenistic (third–first centuries BCE), Roman (first–fourth centuries CE) and Byzantine (fifth–seventh centuries CE).
A wall (W15; length 7.9 m, width 0.6–0.7 m; Figs. 1, 2) oriented east–west was exposed. It was founded on top of virgin soil in the Hellenistic period and its construction utilized a Phoenician building technique that is well known in ‘Akko. Stone courses, added to W15 in the Roman period, did not preserve the Phoenician building technique of the earlier phase. The remains ascribed to this period included a floor level overlain with eight complete cooking pots that had been placed along W15 (Fig. 3) and a section of another wall (W20), oriented north–south and perpendicular to W15. Several pits that had been dug into the earlier strata were ascribed to the Byzantine period. The excavation yielded a wealth of ceramic artifacts (below), a few glass finds and four coins, two of which were identified and assigned to Antiochus III (223–187 BCE; IAA 106148, 106149).
Sixty-nine fragments of amphoras, whose date ranged from the Hellenistic to the Roman–Byzantine periods, were studied. The Hellenistic period was best represented, with vessels originating mostly from the Aegean area (Rhodes—29; Knidos—2; Kos—17; Ephesos—2; Chios—3), Italy (Brindisi, Lamboglia 2, and Republican Ovoid classes) and North Africa (Maña C1/2–1). Several handles were stamped: Rhodes (19; third–early first centuries BCE, mainly second third of second century BCE), Knidos and Kos (1 each; second century BCE); the Koan stamp reads ’Επι Πολ[ / ’Αθηνίπ[που? and displays a rare association of eponym and fabricant in this class.