Area A (Fig. 3). Remains of an ancient road (L104; length c. 7.5 m, width c. 2.5 m), running in a northwest–southeast direction, consisted of a thin layer of small fieldstones on the bedrock surface. The road was bordered by two walls of coarsely worked, large fieldstones (average size 0.6 × 0.7 m), set on their narrow side on the bedrock. Three courses of the northern wall (W107; height 0.45 m; Fig. 4), and a single course of the southern wall (W109; height 0.15 m), were extant. The spaces between the stones of the wall were filled with small fieldstones (max. width 0.1 m). Pebbles found near the road probably originated from an ancient stream bed. A few unidentifiable sherds were retrieved in the accumulation layer overlying the road (L100), as well as a flint hand-axe characteristic of the Lower Paleolithic, which had been secondarily transformed into a core from which flakes had been knapped (B1000/1; Fig. 5). The phenomenon of hand-axes transformed into cores is known from some contemporary sites; some scholars consider that this is initial evidence of the Levallois technology (De Bono and Goren-Inbar 2001; Marder, Milevski and Matskevich 2005).
Area B (Fig. 6). This area revealed additional parts of the road uncovered in Area A (L212–L215; Fig. 7–9). The road was bordered on both sides by walls built of large fieldstones set on the bedrock (W204–W206; height 0.35–0.44 m, average width 0.8 m). The walls were mostly extant for one, or sometimes two, courses. The gaps between the large stones were filled with small fieldstones (max. width 0.2 m). Pottery sherds found between the stones included a jar from the transitional Persian–Hellenistic period (Fig. 10:2), a casserole with a wide ledged rim from the Hellenistic period (Fig. 10:3), bag-shaped jars from the Roman period (Fig. 10:5, 6), a bowl with a shallow disc base (Fig. 10:9) and an imported PRSW bowl (Fig. 10:11), both from the Byzantine period. Five bronze coins were found on the general surface layer in Area B (L208, not marked in plan; Table 1).
Table 1. Coins from Area B (L208)
Half follis of Mauricius Tiberius (city coin of Constantinople [?]; 599/600 CE)
Coin of Arcadius (city coin of Antioch; 383 CE)
Coin from the fourth–fifth centuries CE
Coin of Arcadius (city coin of Antioch; 383–408 CE)
Roman coin (383–395 CE)
Area C (Fig. 11). Two segments of another road, running in a northeast–southwest direction, were exposed (L303, L305; Fig. 12). The road was paved with a small fieldstone layer and bordered by two walls (W302, W304) built of large stones (max. width 0.8 m), with a small stone fill (max. width 0.2 m); the walls were extant for a single course. At the southwestern edge of Area C, a Roman Provincial bronze coin was found (L307, B3011; Ascalon [?] coin; IAA 164856), dated between the late first century CE to 270 CE. Pottery sherds retrieved between the stones of the road included a cooking pot from Iron Age IIB (Fig. 10:1), a cooking pot from the Hellenistic–Roman period (Fig. 10:4), a cup from the late Roman period (Fig. 10:7), and a bowl (Fig. 10:8) and an imported PRSW bowl (Fig. 10:10), both from the Byzantine period.
Flint Finds
Maya Oron
The excavation revealed 45 worked flint items, mostly worn and covered with thick orange-yellow patina. A few were better preserved and made of gray, cracked flint of the Mishash Formation. Most of the items were stone-trimming debris and amorphous cores that could not be attributed to a specific culture or period. The indicative items in the assemblage include a core and a few flakes that were worked in the Levallois technique, characteristic of the Lower Paleolithic period. The findings were not discovered in situ; they were probably washed here along a streambed from a nearby prehistoric site located upstream, possibly from adjacent Tel Bahan.
The remains exposed were probably parts of two local roads (Fig. 13: Nos. 20, 21), which according to their orientation, may have diverged from two points on the major Roman Caesarea–Nablus road and led to Horbat Siv. These two roads are probably associated with roads that were uncovered in the past (Sa‘id and ‘Ad 2011:71–72; Figs. 13: Nos. 28, 29). The several roads leading to and from Horbat Siv may be associated with the many installations reflecting extensive agricultural and industrial activities that were exposed in Sa‘id and ‘Ad’s excavation (2011:86), and with the need to transport agricultural produce to several regions, or to a nearby port city. It may also be assumed that the proximity of the streambed to cultivated plots occasionally required the construction of new access roads, due to flooding. The roads could not be precisely dated, but the latest sherds and coins may attest to the last period of use, probably in the Byzantine period.