An update to Vol. 1, pp. 214–235.

By Amihai MazarGabi MazorBenny ArubasGideon FoersterYoram TsafrirJon Seligman


Nine excavation seasons were conducted at Tel Beth-Shean by the Hebrew University of Jerusalem from 1989 to 1996, under the direction of A. Mazar. One major conclusion of the new excavations is that a topographic step crossing the c. 10-a. mound north of the summit, located at its southeastern corner (between the new excavation areas Q and L), was in fact the northern edge of the settlement during most of the Bronze and Iron Ages, except during the Early Bronze Age I, when settlement perhaps spread over the lower part of the mound, remains of which were found in area L. Thus, through most of the Bronze and Iron Ages the settlement at Beth-Shean probably did not exceed c. 4 a. It has been suggested by B. Arubas that the mound was cut to some extent on the south and west during large-scale earthmoving operations during the Early Roman period, when the civil center of Nysa-Scythopolis was constructed; this might explain the lack of fortifications and the fact that buildings in all periods were found cut on the southern and western parts of the mound.

The adjacent chart presents the University Museum of the University of Pennsylvania Expedition (UME) strata and local stratigraphy in the Hebrew University (HU) excavations at Tel Bet-Shean.


THE EARLY BRONZE AGE I. Area M of the new excavations is located on the southeastern edge of the mound, the highest point of the mound in that period. In this area the University Museum of the University of Pennsylvania excavations stopped at the top of level XIV of the Early Bronze Age I. The new excavations revealed there two strata of the Early Bronze Age IB: local strata M3 and M2. A large public building stood there in stratum M3, destroyed and rebuilt in stratum M2.

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