In June 2020, a salvage excavation was conducted at Ẓerifin (Ṣarafand al-‘Amar; Permit No. A-8760; map ref. 185324–921/651337–749; Fig. 1), prior to the construction of a road. The excavation, undertaken on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority and funded by the Israel Land Authority, was conducted by V. Eshed, with the assistance of Y. Amrani (administration), I. Jonish (surveying), A. Dagot (GPS), M. Abu (plans), H. Torgë (pottery), Y. Arbel (consultation) and Y. Tepper (guidance).
A burial structure dating from the Byzantine or Early Islamic period was excavated. Previous excavations at the site uncovered a settlement sequence that spanned from the Late Byzantine period to the British Mandate era (for background and references, see Kohn-Tavor 2015).
The tomb was dug into the ḥamra soil and lined with small and medium-sized fieldstones bonded with gray mortar (Figs. 2–4). A step (Fig. 5) was built on the eastern side of the tomb; two large stones beside it may have facilitated access to the step. The tomb was covered with a gabled roof (Figs. 6–8). The structure contained a few poorly preserved, non-articulated human bones belonging to two individuals. It also yielded several worn potsherds (not drawn) that date from the Byzantine or Early Islamic period. The tomb contained a fragment of a modern light bulb and had evidently been disturbed or robbed.
Similar tombs are known in a nearby cemetery belonging to the Arab village of Ṣarafand, where they were used as family tombs. Gabled stone-built tombs are also known from excavations in Yafo (Arbel 2017: Fig. 4).