L6 (5 × 10 m, max. height c. 3 m; Figs. 3, 4): a corner with straight walls. Two removed but unworked quarry stones were visible in the courtyard. Layers of earth fill were identified in the western section of the courtyard, inside the quarry. An accumulation of quarrying chips covered the quarry floor (L8).After the quarry was abandoned, it was filled with brown topsoil (L9) that was used for farming.Once the plots ceased to be farmed, alluvium and modern debris accumulated in the site (L1).
L7 (2.5 × 2.5 m, max. height c. 1 m): shallow rock-cuttings.
L4 (4.0 × 7.5 m, max. height c. 1.6 m): shallow rock-cuttings.
L2, L3, L5 (10 × 27 m; Figs. 5, 6): a courtyard quarry with three westward-descending quarrying steps. The walls and floor retained the negatives of severance channels (Fig. 7) and chisel marks (Fig. 8), both attesting to the working technique and the size of the stones that were extracted from the quarry (average dimensions 1.0 × 1.0 × 1.5 m; Fig. 9). The lowest step was not excavated due to technical constraints. The quarry area yielded only alluvial soil; the layer of quarrying chips usually found at the bottom of a quarry courtyard could not be identified. The courtyard extended southward, beyond the limits of the excavation.
A quarrying step (L10) was found in the east part of the excavated area. Judging by the severance-channel negatives, this section of the quarry was probably used to produce smaller building stones (0.3 × 0.3 × 0.6 m). These rock-cuttings are probably the continuation of another quarry surrounding a burial-cave courtyard outside the excavation area. It is impossible to date this quarry or to determine what connection it had with the large neighboring quarry to its north and east.
The finds from the quarry surface were meager and included nondiagnostic potsherds. During the excavation, an old hand grenade was unearthed (Fig. 10) and removed by an Israeli police sapper. The grenade, a British Mills No. 36, was distributed in World War I and continued to be in use until the Six-Day War.
Once the quarry had been abandoned, it was filled with the quarrying debris that had accumulated at the site. This layer was covered by a fill of terra-rossa soil for agricultural use. The rock-cut areas are well suited for farming: The structure of a quarry courtyard allows for an excellent water economy for dry farming. A layer of terra-rossa earth covering the quarrying debris serves as bedding soil. The rock surfaces across the area channels generous amounts of runoff water into the quarry. The quarry’s floor is rather watertight, allowing most of the water to accumulate and remain there for long periods of time. The layer of quarrying debris provides ventilation and contains water, thus allowing roots to penetrate down to the water level while preventing them from rotting.
The technique, size, and location of the rock-cuttings attest to a large quarry that was intended to provide stones for the monumental construction projects conducted in the city during the Early Roman period.