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.
Join us in the 2019 excavation season at Qedesh in the Galilee! During this season, the first full season of the Hebrew University expedition to the site, we will expand our investigations of the mega-site of the Early Bronze Age which developed around the main mound, the largest urban center in northern Canaan at that time, focusing on the site’s fortifications and domestic quarters. In addition, and for the first time since Aharoni’s trial trench in 1953, we will open a new step-trench on the mound, digging into the hidden secrets of the Canaanite and Israelite cities spanning the third–first millennia B.C.E.
How does a dig team work? What do archaeologists look for at a dig? In this documentary DVD, learn how excavators work and what we can learn from archaeology. Learn more >>
Early Bronze–Ottoman Period
July 14 – August 8, 2019
June 1, 2019
The excavation team will be based at Kibbutz Yiron (15 minutes ride from the site) at the Israel National Trail rooms. The rooms are basic dormitories: 5–6 beds, equipped with a refrigerator, microwave, toilet and shower. Please bring your own towel, sleeping bag/bedclothes.
Dr. Uri Davidovich is affiliated with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Ido Wachtel is affiliated with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Roi Sabar is affiliated with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.