• Name: Paul McLerran
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Friday, January 21, 2005

Dig Spotlight: Walls Still Standing: a Herodian Palace

Near the northern coast of Israel lies a site where excavations have uncovered a large palatial complex from the time of King Herod (end of the first century B.C.E.). The palace was in use until the Great Revolt in the second half of the first century C.E. During the revolt (66-70 C.E.) the palace was abandoned and never inhabited again. A "lost palace" of King Herod the great? Dr. Yizhar Hirschfeld of the Hebrew University can best answer that question. He is directing the last season of excavations at this site, which has yielded a rich assemblage of finds from the Early Roman period, including pottery vessels, lamps, glassware, coins (including the silver denarius, which was standard currency in the Roman Empire), and metal objects. The remains at the site are well preserved and, amazingly, many of the palace walls were found standing to a height of over 2 meters. Last summer the team completed excavation of the palace garden. This coming season, which runs from June 26 to July 21, will focus on excavating the palace’s residential area.

Participants will stay at the Dor Holiday Village -- very nice hotel-like accommodations on the coast from where you can very easily step out onto the beach and take a swim. More information can be found at the
Ramat Hanadiv website.

Books to read on the subject:

Ramat Hanadiv Excavations: Final Report on the 1984 - 1998 Seasons

The Archaeology of Roman Palestine


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