Located near the city of Beit Shean in the Jordan Valley, less than an hour’s drive from the city of Haifa and the Mediterranean shore, the Middle Chalcolithic site of Tel Tsaf has long been considered one of the most promising sites for studying the transition to complex societies in the Near East. This large site is distinguished by its superb preservation of mudbrick architecture, burials, organic materials, evidence for large-scale storage and long-distance trade, and for having the earliest known metal object in the southern Levant.
The principal goals of the renewed project are to explore various aspects of social and economic organization at both the household and community levels during the Neolithic-Chalcolithic transition in the Near East and the establishment of the Mediterranean diet. The superb preservation of mudbrick architecture and organic remains at the sites offers ideal conditions to study these changes during the formative stages of the Late Chalcolithic period and the ecological settings of these changes.
The multinational team is composed of archaeologists, researchers, and experts in various fields, students, and volunteers from different countries around the globe who work shoulder to shoulder in the field and lab. This season they plan to continue in their efforts to retrieve bio-archaeological data to reconstruct the past environment in the Jordan Valley and better understand the site’s economy.
Central Jordan Valley, Northern Israel
Friday, January 5, 2024
Contact for more details.
Volunteers will be housed in Kibbutz Kfar Rupin. We work Sunday-Thursday. Breakfast will be packed by us and taken to the site in the morning except for Sundays, and lunch will be eaten in the kibbutz (catering). We will organize dinners. The rooms (3-4 people to a room) have AC. The kibbutz has a mini-market and a swimming pool (we hope we will be able to enter the latter). Some evenings we will have lectures by members of the team.
Danny Rosenberg: University of Haifa
Florian Klimscha: German Archaeological Institute