Tel Qedesh is one of the largest Biblical mounds in northern Israel. First settled as early as the Chalcolithic period, the site reached its peak during the Early Bronze Age, when an enormous site (ca. 60 hectares), extending well beyond the main mound, emerged during this crucial phase of early Levantine urbanism. A Canaanite city continued to thrive on the mound during the second millennium B.C.E., to be followed by an important Israelite center during the Iron Age II, known as one of the Refuge and Levite Cities (Joshua 20:7; 21:32). Following its conquest by the Assyrian King Tiglath Pileser III in 732 B.C.E. (2 Kings 15:29), it re-emerged as a Phoenician administrative center during the Persian and Hellenistic periods, and later as an important pagan town on the boundary between Tyre and Jewish Galilee during the Second Temple period (BJ 3:35-40). A rural cultic center, housing two temples and numerous mausolea (elaborate burial monuments), developed here in the Late Roman period, and an important market town is attested during the Early Islamic period. The site that was a major cultural, economic and political hub for over four millennia is now nestled peacefully in the quiet, green scenery of the Upper Galilee of Israel, waiting for archaeologists to uncover its treasures.
Early Bronze Age—British Mandate
July 11—August 5, 2021
Credit is possible via host institutions as well as through the Rothberg International School of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
The excavation team will be based in a Kibbutz near the site, in basic shared rooms.
Dr. Uri Davidovich is affiliated with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Ido Wachtel is affiliated with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.