The excavation area was located on the southern slope of Jebel Khuwweikha, where several previous excavations uncovered remains dating from Iron Age II and the Late Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine periods (Alexandre 2015).
Two adjacent squares opened in the current excavation (A, B; Fig. 2) uncovered an ancient quarry for building stones, dating from the Late Hellenistic–Early Roman periods (late second century BCE–first century CE; Stratum II), and Roman-period walls (first–fourth centuries CE; Stratum I).
Stratum II. Part of a limestone quarry, sloping down to the west and south, was uncovered. The eastern side of Square A exhibited quarried steps, channels of three different-sized undetached stones, and the quarrying marks of a large rectangular block that had been detached (L8, L9; Fig. 3). In Square B, additional quarrying marks were uncovered, including a rocky outcrop exhibiting two short vertical quarrying channels and the ends of two parallel horizontal quarrying channels (L3; Fig. 4), indicating that a stone had been detached here; one of the vertical channels was filled with stones and plaster. Along the continuation of the rocky outcrop (L1), three parallel severance channels sloped down to the west, and on the western edge of the square, part of a rectangular quarry with a severance channel, was uncovered (L2; Fig. 5).
The quarry yielded small pottery sherds, including buff-colored storage jars with short thickened rims (Fig. 6:1–4), similar to Late Hellenistic storage jars from Capernaum (Loffreda 2008:119–120, Type ANF 3, dated to the late second–first centuries BCE), and reddish brown colored Early Roman storage jars with everted necks and simple rims (Fig. 6:5, 6; Díez Fernández 1983:107, 135, Type T1.3, dated to the first century BCE–first century CE). These pottery sherds date the use of the quarry to the Late Hellenistic and Early Roman periods.
Stratum I. Above the quarry was a curved wall (W4; Figs. 7–9) built of various-sized limestone blocks, some dressed and others fieldstones, interspersed with small stones. The wall was preserved for three courses, and traces of gray plaster were preserved on its base. The wall was built on a curving-round, rock-hewn step that demarcated a leveled rock-hewn surface (L10, L12). In the eastern part of the step, a rock-hewn corner and a natural cavity in the rock were filled with stones (W11; Fig. 10) to form a foundation for the construction of W4. Other cuttings in the rock step were also filled with stones. At the western end of W4, the wall’s upper course abutted a hewn rock to its south that probably formed part of the wall’s foundation, for a course of stones that was not preserved. Wall 4 apparently originally continued southward to form a complete circle, which would have enclosed a large area. Based on the ceramic finds (below), this building was probably used in the Middle to Late Roman periods (first–fourth centuries CE).
The southwestern part of Square B exhibited a short segment of an east–west wall (W5; Fig. 11) built of medium-sized limestone blocks, some dressed and some fieldstones. The wall was founded on a thin layer of soil (L6) that had accumulated above the quarry, and it was preserved for a single course; its relationship with W4 is not clear.
The soil accumulations above the quarry, beside and above W4, and in the layers near the surface (L7), yielded pottery dating from the Middle and Late Roman periods, including Kefar Hananya Form 1B bowls dating from the late first–fourth centuries CE (Fig. 6:7, 8; Adan-Bayewitz 1993:91–97); a Kefar Hananya Form 1C bowl dating from the mid-third–late fourth centuries CE (Fig. 6:9; Adan-Bayewitz 1993:98–99); and a Kefar Hananya Form 4D cooking pot dating from the mid-first–mid-second centuries CE (Fig. 6:10; Adan-Bayewitz 1993: 130–132). A storage jar of Type T1.5 jar dating from the mid-first–second centuries CE, was also retrieved (Fig. 6:11; Díez Fernández 1983:107–109).
The archaeological remains uncovered in the excavation reflect activity at the site from the Late Hellenistic period until the late Roman period. Since the remains were uncovered in an area outside the main settlement, the round structure may be related to agricultural activity, or a nearby farmstead.