The third season of excavations at Tel Esur exposed a diverse array of discoveries including 14th-century B.C.E. figurines, Canaanite fortifications and an Iron Age administrative structure. The multi-period site is well suited for its multi-generational excavation team: Over 500 Israeli youths joined University of Haifa archaeologists in Israel’s largest community archaeological dig. A University of Haifa press release emphasizes the complimentary educational and archaeological goals of the project. Students engage with their local history while developing teamwork skills, and instead of teaching in a staged classroom exercise, the students make a direct contribution to our understanding of the site’s history. The youth team exposed strata from as early as the Middle Bronze Age (19th-16th centuries B.C.E.), and have uncovered large-scale public architecture, domestic structures and unique small finds, including a Late Bronze Age Egyptian scarab from the 14th century B.C.E. The University of Haifa announced that this year “9th-grade students from schools in the surrounding area – secular and religious, Jewish and Muslim – participated in the excavations, as did other volunteers from Israel, Italy, USA, UK, and Poland.”
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Reviewed by R. Steven Notley
R. Steven Notley reviews Jerusalem: The Temple Mount by Leen Ritmeyer and Kathleen Ritmeyer.