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  • Writer's pictureAmir Benzaquen

Two New Publications on Finds from Megiddo

Check out two new articles, which investigate different aspects of the life at Megiddo in the Bronze and Iron Ages.

The article presents an intra-site investigation of the Strata VIIA and VIA faunal remains at Megiddo, Israel, which date to the LB III and late Iron I respectively. We examined social disparity between the populations of two areas of the city. Our finds indicate a difference in social status and division of labour: a dichotomy between producer-consumers and consumers, who most probably interacted. Viewed in light of other types of remains at Megiddo, these findings reveal that the inhabitants of one sector engaged in agriculture and cottage industries, while the people in the other part of the city, close to the palace, were more affluent – related to the local ruler and administrators. Our study demonstrates the potential in intra-site investigation at large, multi-period sites.

During the ongoing excavations of Area Q at Tel Megiddo, a variety of on-site geoarchaeological analytical methods have been used in the study of Iron Age occupations dating to the Iron Age IIA. The aim of this approach is to optimally combine macroarchaeology with microarchaeology in order to reconstruct activities that were carried out within an Iron Age urban neighborhood. The macroscopic finds indicate that this area belonged to a quarter that features both domestic and public structures. Of particular interest are (a) evidence for abandonment and spatial differentiation of activities in Level Q-5 associated with a large, well-built structure with 18 pillars; and (b) localized small-scale destruction associated with ephemeral metalworking activity related to occupation during Level Q-4. Similar approaches have been carried out at other sites in Israel (e.g., Tel Dor and Tell eṣ-Ṣâfi/Gath), yet only at Megiddo have we been able to use these methods to study a large excavation area (ca. 200 m2). The results shed new light on the variability of human activities in public and domestic contexts in an urban environment, and contribute to understanding the uses of space and the phenomenon of destruction by fire.

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