A square (25 sq m) was excavated below modern accumulations and a probe trench (29 sq m) was dug with the aid of mechanical equipment. Four occupation strata (Fig. 1) were exposed, including a wall dating to Early Bronze I (Stratum IV), a rampart from Middle Bronze II (Stratum III), a kiln (Stratum II) and a large structure dating to the Byzantine and Early Islamic periods (Stratum I).
Stratum IV. A row of medium-sized basalt stones (W4; Fig. 2) was exposed c. 2.5 m below the surface. A few fragments of pottery vessels dating to Early Bronze I were discovered near the wall, among them a gray burnished bowl (Fig. 3:1), a holemouth jar (Fig. 3:2) and body fragments decorated with brown and black band-slip painting (Fig. 3:3). Remains from this period had been discovered before in the northeastern part of the village (HA-ESI 122).
Stratum III. A rampart composed of seven layers (a–g; thickness of each layer 0.35–0.65 m; Table 1; Fig. 1: Section 5-5), inclined at an angle of 25° to the southwest, was exposed in the northern section of the probe trench. The upper Layers a and b were delimited from the west by a wall (W3; Fig. 4). Layer b consisted of crushed chalk (Fig. 5), similar to the core of the rampart that had been discovered in the excavation of Area G in the northern part of the Tell (Z. Gal 2002, pp. 82–89). The inclination of this layer was uneven and steeper in its eastern part. Layer c was horizontal, unlike the rest of the inclined layers. Wall 3 was built of three stepped courses of large fieldstones, aligned northwest-southeast. It seems to have been part of the fortification system and may have served as a retaining wall for a rampart constructed on the slope. The top of Wall 3 was covered with a layer of brown earth that spilled over it from the west, which contained reddish brown mud-brick material, probably waste from a kiln in Stratum II (L14; below). Wall 3 was severed by a building from the Byzantine period (Stratum I; below). A few potsherds that dated to the end of the Middle Bronze Age and the beginning of the Late Bronze Age were found in the probe trench; these, however, can not be used for dating the rampart because they were gathered at random from the probe trench, which was dug with the aid of mechanical equipment. The pottery finds included open bowls (Fig. 3:4, 5), a carinated bowl (Fig. 3:6), a krater (Fig. 3:7), a cooking pot (Fig. 3:8) and body fragments of a chocolate-on-white bowl (Fig. 3:9), a bichrome vessel (Fig. 3:10) and a brown-painted vessel (Fig. 3:11).
Table 1. The Layers of the Rampart
Brown soil mixed with crushed limestone
Crushed chalk
A horizontal layer of medium and large fieldstones
Brown soil with small fieldstones and crushed limestone
Small fieldstones and small pieces of limestone
Brown soil
Brown soil with small fieldstones and limestone
Stratum II. A stone-built kiln (L14) was discovered in the southern section of the probe trench, next to Wall 3. The stones on the interior of the kiln were charred. Numerous mud bricks were uncovered inside and around the kiln. The mud-brick material noted on Wall 3 probably originated in this kiln. Since the kiln was constructed adjacent to Wall 3, it apparently postdated the rampart.
Stratum I. The northern part of a large building, which consisted of an eastern and western spaces (L12, L13; Fig. 6), was exposed. The northern wall of the building (W1; exposed length 5 m, width 1.4 m, max. preserved height 2.1 m) was mostly built of medium-sized fieldstones that were not arranged in courses. The upper, western part of the wall was narrower (W1/a; width 0.9 m) and built of two courses of roughly hewn medium-sized stones with small fieldstones in-between. Wall 1 had cut the rampart and Wall 3 of Stratum III and was abutted by another wall (W2; exposed length 3 m, width 0.9 m, preserved height 1.2 m) from the south that was built of roughly hewn medium-sized stones and small fieldstones in-between, similar to the construction of Wall 1/a. A small part of a wall (W5), parallel to Wall 1/a  and delimiting the southern side of the western space, was exposed on the southern border of the square. Mud-brick collapse in the western space was not removed because its excavation was suspended. A white mosaic floor (L8; 2.8 × 2.9 m) was revealed in the eastern space (Fig. 7). The large tesserae were arranged around the perimeter of the room in straight rows that formed a broad frame (width 0.4 m), and in diagonal lines in the center of the room. The continuation of the rampart’s Layer c from Stratum III was exposed below the mosaic floor and it seems that the entire building was constructed in an area, dug into the rampart. A wall (W7; height 0.65 m; Fig. 8), built of one row of stones placed directly on the mosaic floor, was discovered just to the south of W1. The center of the wall abutted W1 so that two cells (L17, L18) were formed and probably served for storage. A coin (IAA 115212), dating to the fifth century CE, was discovered at the bottom of Cell 17. This construction was probably added sometime during the building’s existence. Pottery finds from the Byzantine and Early Islamic periods were discovered on the mosaic floor in the eastern space, in the storage cells, as well as in the western space. These finds included a cooking krater (Fig. 9:1), a lid (Fig. 9:2), a cooking pot (Fig. 9: 3) and jars (Fig. 9:4–6). It seems that the exposed building was built in the fifth century CE and continued to be used in the Early Islamic period. It is possible that the use of the structure was modified during the Early Islamic period and the storage cells were built in it.