In May–November 2009, a salvage excavation was conducted at the Gloria Hotel, on the Greek Catholic Patriarchate Street near Jaffa Gate, in Jerusalem’s Christian Quarter (Permit No. A-5654; map ref. 221690–700/631570–80; Fig. 1), prior to the building’s renovation. The excavation, undertaken on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority and financed by the Gloria Hotel, was directed by A. Landes-Nagar (photography), with the assistance of Y. Ohion (administration), T. Kornfeld and A. Hajian (surveying and drafting), S. Itkis (plans for publication), A. Peretz (field Photography), C. Amit (studio photography), Y. Barshak (photographic archive), Y. Bukengolts (pottery restoration), I. Lidsky-Reznikov and J. Rudmann (pottery drawing), A. Gyerman Levanon (digital documentation), M. Avissar, D. Sandhouse, and B. Dolinka (pottery reading), L. Kupershmidt (metallurgical laboratory), I. Ktalav (mollusks), L. Habas (marble sculpture), B. Ouahnouna (glass) and D.T. Ariel (numismatics).
The current excavation unearthed building remains from four construction layers, dated by the pottery and glass finds to the Early Roman/Herodian periods (Stratum IV; first century BCE; Fig. 3, yellow), the late Byzantine/Early Islamic periods (Stratum III; seventh–mid-eighth centuries CE; Fig. 3, brown), the Crusader/Ayyubid periods (Stratum II; second half of the twelfth century CE; Fig. 3, green) and the Ottoman period (wall foundations [W1, W4]; Stratum I; Fig. 4).
Finds dating from the Iron Age II and the Late Roman period, the time of Aelia Capitolina, attest to activity at or in the vicinity of the excavation site during these periods. The finds from the time of Aelia Capitolina include pottery, 23 curved and overlapping roof tiles (imbrices and tegulae) marked with round and rectangular stamps of the Tenth Legion (Fig. 5), and a fragment of a marble statue depicting fauna: a rabbit, a genet(?) and part of a snake, of whom only the tail remains (L103, B1004; Fig. 6).
The numerous finds from the excavation that are attributed to the Late Roman period and specifically to the Tenth Legion attest to an extensive Roman presence on the city’s southwestern hill, to the south of the excavation. This reinforces the current scholarly consensus, which places the location of the Tenth Legion’s garrison in this part of the city (for the site of the Roman garrison, see Weksler-Bdolah 2014
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Tsafrir Y. 1999. The Topography and Archaeology of Aelia Capitolina. In Y. Tsafrir and S. Safrai eds. The History of Jerusalem:The Roman and Byzantine Periods (70–638 CE). Jerusalem. Pp. 115–166 (Hebrew).
Weksler-Bdolah S. 2014. The Tenth Legion’s Camp: Nonetheless on the Southwestern Hill. In E. Baruch and A. Faust eds. New Studies on Jerusalem 20. Ramat Gan. Pp. 219–238 (Hebrew; English summary, 48–50).