During January 2011, an excavation was conducted in the Silwan quarter of Jerusalem (Permit No. A-6106; map ref. 22227/63091), following the discovery of antiquities during roadwork. The excavation, undertaken on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority and underwritten by Moriah—The Jerusalem Development Company, Ltd., was directed by I. Zilberbod, with the assistance of N. Nehama (administration), V. Essman and Y. Shmidov (surveying), A. Peretz (field photography) and Y. Billig and R. Be’eri (preliminary inspections).
The excavation area was located at the intersection of Ma‘alot ‘Ir David and Wadi Hilwah streets, c. 15 m east of Area H in Shiloh’s excavations (De Groot A. and Michaeli D. Area H: Stratigraphic Report. In A. De Groot and D.T. Ariel, eds. Excavations at the city of David, 1978–1985, Directed by Yigal Shiloh, Vol. III: Stratigraphical, Environmental and Other Reports [Qedem 33]. Jerusalem), where remains from the Byzantine and Hellenistic periods were discovered (Figs. 1, 2) and east of an area where Bliss and Dickie exposed remains of the Siloam Church, dating to the Byzantine period (Bliss F.J. and Dickie A.C. 1898. Excavations at Jerusalem, 1894–1897. London).
A small area (2.5 × 3.0 m) was opened and a wall segment (W1; length c. 2.5 m, width 0.8 m, height 1.5 m; Figs. 3, 4) was exposed. The northern part of the wall was damaged due to the previous installation of infrastructures and the southern part of the wall and the area west of it remained beyond the excavation area. The wall, aligned north–south, was built perpendicular to the slope and four of its courses were preserved. The upper course was built of a row of medium-sized dressed stones (average size 0.30 × 0.35 × 0.40 m), placed on a broader foundation of small fieldstones (0.15 × 0.20 × 0.25 m). To the east and parallel to the wall was a narrow section of a small-stone pavement (L103) that abutted the wall. Several pottery fragments and roof tiles from the Byzantine period (not drawn) were discovered in the fill above the floor, indicating that the floor and wall dated to this period or earlier.
The small scope of the excavation hampered the understanding of the connection between the exposed remains and the previous excavations in the vicinity; however, Wall 1 is probably part of the same complex that was documented in the adjacent excavation areas.