For Rent or Buy: Apartments with a Canaanite Fortress in the Basement

Bible and archaeology news


An aerial view of the Canaanite fortress excavated in Nahariya, Israel. Photo: Guy Fitoussi, courtesy of the Israel Antiquities Authority.

Imagine that the floor of your living room had been built from the remains of a fortress dating back 3,400 years—talk about historic property! The Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) has announced that a recently excavated Canaanite fortress in Nahariya, Israel’s northernmost coastal city, will be integrated into a new high-rise apartment building near the beach.

In a large-scale project, the IAA worked with the Kochav Company, Ltd.—which will build the apartments—as well as students from a local high school to excavate the multi-room fortress.

“It seems that the citadel … was used as an administrative center that served the mariners who sailed along the Mediterranean coast 3,400 years ago. There was probably a dock alongside the citadel,” said excavation directors Nimrod Getzov, Yair Amitzur and Dr. Ron Be’eri in an IAA press release.

As the point where three of the world’s major religions converge, Israel’s history is one of the richest and most complex in the world. Sift through the archaeology and history of this ancient land in the free eBook Israel: An Archaeological Journey, and get a view of these significant Biblical sites through an archaeologist’s lens.


These Late Bronze Age female figurines were found amidst the remains of the fortress. Photo: Eran Gilvarg, courtesy of the Israel Antiquities Authority.

The excavators found within the rooms of the Late Bronze Age fortress human and animal ceramic figurines, bronze weapons and imported pottery vessels, which indicate that the Canaanite residents were in contact with Cyprus and other cultures around the Mediterranean.

The fortress evidently suffered through four major fires and was rebuilt after each conflagration. Discovered in burnt layers were cereal, legume and grape seeds—representative of the rations that the sailors could buy at the fortress.

According to the IAA press release, part of the fortress will be conserved and exhibited in the basement of the new high-rise apartment building.


Related reading in Bible History Daily:

Hazor Excavations’ Amnon Ben-Tor Reveals Who Conquered Biblical Canaanites

Excavating the Ancient Near East’s Oldest Wine Cellar

Canaanite Fortress Discovered in the City of David

Canaanite Cult Complex Discovered at Tel Burna

Canaanite Religion at Tel Burna

Elite Canaanite Burial Discovered in the Jezreel Valley

Gezer Excavations Uncover Previously Unknown Canaanite City

Canaanite Cult Stone in a Jewish Farmhouse


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