The American Schools of Oriental Research - Sponsored Projects

ASOR CAP Project Snapshots

Project: Agrarian Life and Landscape at Politiko-Troullia

Country: Cyprus

Project Director(s): Steve Falconer, Patricia Fall

Project Web Site:

This project will investigate Politiko-Troullia, a Middle Cypriot village 25 km southwest of Nicosia, as it illustrates agrarian village life and landscape change on the eve of Cypriot urbanization. The Early and Middle Bronze ages of Cyprus featured the development of pre-urban complex society prior to the appearance Late Bronze Age cities. The 2010 excavations at the northern and southern ends of Politiko-Troullia West exposed much deeper and more heavily stratified sediments than expected. The full depositional sequence at Troullia West now totals nearly four meters and features 4-5 major strata of occupation and architectural modification and rebuilding, spanning the Middle Cypriot Period.

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Project: Kourion's Amathus Gate Cemetery

Country: Cyprus

Project Director(s): Michael Given

Project Web Site:

This project is investigating the funerary landscapes of the Roman city of Kourion on Cyprus's southern coast. This involves reconstructing the main phases of the cemetery and its associated features, and investigating the development of mortuary customs, the biological relationships of the population buried in the tombs, and wider trade networks.

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Project: Arediou Vouppes: A Bronze Age Farming Community on Cyprus

Country: Cyprus

Project Director(s): Louise Steel

Project Web Site:

Arediou-Vouppes is an inland farming site. Its main occupation dates to the 13th century BCE. Two substantial structures have been uncovered: a well-constructed barn and an "industrial" building. The layout of the settlement and organization of diverse activities suggest centralized control and that the inhabitants had access to imported commodities.

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Project: The Early Neolithic of Cyprus -- the Ais Giorkis Project

Country: Cyprus

Project Director(s): Alan Simmons

The Cypriot Neolithic has been expanded with a new early phase, the Cypro-PPNB ( ca. 8,400-7,000 cal. B.C.), represented by only a few sites, of which Ais Giorkis is one. It is unusual in that it is upland, contains cattle, unique structures, and a rich material culture, suggestive of feasting.
Recent research demonstrates that Cyprus has an earlier Neolithic than originally believed. Ais Giorkis is one of these early sites, and is a rare upland entity. Continued research will clarify its role as a critical component to understanding the island's initial colonization and broader regional issues related to Neolithic expansion.

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Project: Akrotiri-Dreamer

Country: Cyprus

Project Director(s): Bradley A. Ault

The Hellenistic-Roman site of Dreamer's Bay is located along the southern reaches of the Akrotiri peninsula in southwestern Cyprus, its role as a port governed by the strategic military and economic advantages of its natural setting. Remains documented thus far include both those on land and in the sea.

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Project: Early Bronze Excavations at Sotira - Kaminoudhia

Country: Cyprus

Project Director(s): Stuart Swiny

The Early Bronze Age site of Sotira Kaminoudhia consists of a settlement and a cemetery with rock-cut chambers where the dead were buried with pottery, metal and personal ornaments. The settlement of tightly clustered structures yielded lithics, ceramics, a few copper objects and gaming boards with victims of the earthquake which destroyed the settlement around 2250 B.C.

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Project: The Pyla - Koutsopetria Archaeological Project

Country: Cyprus

Project Director(s): R. Scott Moore, David Pettegrew

Project Web Site:

The Pyla-Koutsopetria Archaeological Project (PKAP) is an archaeological survey of the region around the modern village of Pyla, Cyprus. Our research goal is to determine the relationship between this stretch of coastline and other coastal sites on the island, and the Eastern Mediterranean more generally.

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Project: Troodos Archaeological and Environmental Survey Project

Country: Cyprus

Project Director(s): Michael Given, Vasiliki Kassianidou

Project Web Site:

TAESP is an interdisciplinary survey project working in the Northern Troodos Mountains of Cyprus. Fieldwork took place between 2000 and 2004. The project's overall aims are to investigate the relationship between people and their environment from the Neolithic period to the present.

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Project: The Souskiou Project: Community Integration in Prehistoric Cyprus

Country: Cyprus

Project Director(s): E. Peltenburg

Project Web Site:

Souskiou is a remarkable ritual centre that foreshadows the nearby World Heritage temple of Aphrodite at Palaepaphos on Cyprus. The aim of the project is to provide insights into the role of a unique centre within small-scale prehistoric communities that coincidentally or otherwise shares features with its celebrated successor.

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Project: Kalavasos and Maroni Built Environments Project

Country: Cyprus

Project Director(s): Kevin D. Fisher, Sturt W. Manning, Michael Rogers

Project Web Site:

This project is an interdisciplinary investigation of the relationship between architecture, social interaction and social change in Late Bronze Age Cyprus. Current work combines geophysical survey with architectural mapping and modeling in order to reconstruct the urban landscapes of the important sites of Kalavasos-Ayios Dhimitrios and Maroni.

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Project: Lycoming College Expedition to Idalion

Country: Cyprus

Project Director(s): Pamela Gaber

Project Web Site:

The current expedition under the directorship of Pamela Gaber has been in the field off and on since 1987. We are currently digging in 3 fields: The Sanctuary of the Paired Deities, the Adonis Temenos (the earliest and latest levels), and the Hellenistic and Roman industrial installations.

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Project: The Wadi Tumilat Project

Country: Egypt

Project Director(s): John S. Holladay, Jr.

This is an ASOR affiliated project.

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Project: The Rowanduz Archaeological Program

Country: Iraq

Project Director(s): Michael D. Danti

Project Web Site:

The Rowanduz Archaeological Program (RAP) seeks to advance understanding of the rich and virtually unexplored archaeological resources of the Rowanduz-Soran region of northeastern Iraqi Kurdistan (Erbil Province) through intensive surveys and excavations. RAP's research focus is the early Iron Age (1200-600 BC), although all periods will be thoroughly documented.

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Project: The Promotory Palace Excavations

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Kathryn Gleason

Project Web Site:

The Promontory Palace field seasons at Caesarea took place between 1976 and 2001. Sponsored by Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the University of Pennsylvania, the project has explored the remains of an ambitious architectural project on the natural promontory south of the harbor. The team interprets the building as the maritime palace of Herod the Great and the praetorium of the later Roman officials through the Byzantine era. A late Hellenistic cemetery and quarry predate the building, and use of the site for agriculture and a Bedouin cemetery post date it.

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Project: The Gezer Gateway Project

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): John S. Holladay, Jr.

Project Web Site:

Excavated in 1967-70 by the Hebrew Union College-Harvard Semitic Museum Expedition, W. G. Dever, Director, J. S. Holladay, Jr., Field III Dir. This is the only well-preserved and well-excavated gate of one of Solomon's 3 "Royal Cities", 1 Kgs 9:15. Preparation for final publication is nearing completion (U. of Toronto). The span of the various gateways in the series runs from ca. 970 BCE to roughly 150 BCE., with the bulk of the stratification spanning ca. 970-ca. 600 B.C. (within that, ca. 970-720(?) predominates), and a smaller, but still sizeable quantity of materials comes from ca. 250 (?) to ca. 150 BCE. There is a fair sprinkling of materials from ca. 1900-1905 CE, as well, but these materials were not, at the time, considered of scientific merit. In retrospect, this is probably a mistake. There is evidence of a Siamun destruction and major evidence of a Sheshonq I destruction.

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Project: Joint Archaeological Expedition to Tell el-Hesi

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Jeffrey A. Blakely

The Joint Archaeological Expedition to Tell el-Hesi conducted excavation from 1970-1983. The project concentrated on the Bedouin, Persian, and Iron Age remains (Fields I and III) and the EB III wall system of the lower city (Fields V, VI, and IX). The project has been in publication mode since 1983.

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Project: Jaffa Cultural Heritage Project Excavations

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Aaron A. Burke

Project Web Site:

The Jaffa Cultural Heritage Project (JCHP) is a joint interdisciplinary archaeological research project of the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA), Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA), and the Johannes Gutenberg Universität, Mainz (Germany). Its focus is the renewal archaeological exploration of Jaffa in coordination with publication and conservation efforts.

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Project: Tel Kedesh Excavation

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Sharon Herbert, Andrea M. Berlin

Project Web Site:

Kedesh is a large tel, occupied from the EB to 1948. Our excavations centered on an administration building constructed under the Persians and reused by Hellenistic monarchs until c. 144 BCE. In 2010 we began final analysis of all classical-period finds for full publication.

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Project: Southern Plain of Akko Project (SPAP)

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Carolina A. Aznar, Shalom Yankelevitz

Project Web Site:

The Southern Plain of Akko Project aims at improving our understanding of the Cananites (LB Age) and the Phoenicians and Israelites (Iron Age) in the area around the last section of the Kishon River (Israel). It includes surveying the southern plain of Akko, excavating Tel Me'amer, and conducting petrographic analyses.

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Project: Tell el-Wawiyat Excavation project

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Beth Alpert Nakhai, J.P. Dessel

Project Web Site:

Tell el-Wawiyat is a small mound, located in the Bet Netofah Valley in Israel's Lower Galilee. The objectives of the project are: (1) to investigate the Late Bronze Age â€" Iron Age I transitional horizon generally, and especially the question of cultural continuity and discontinuity; (2) to examine urban â€" village relations in the Bet Netofah Valley by comparing Tell el-Wawiyat to the larger Tel Hannaton, and to smaller sites in the valley; and (3) to test the hypothesis that Tell el-Wawiyat was an early Israelite agricultural village, established in the Lower Galilee hinterland in the 12th century B.C.E., on a formerly Canaanite site.

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Project: The Zeitah Excavations

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Ron E. Tappy

Project Web Site:

In June-July, 2010, The Zeitah Excavations will enter its 13th year of field exploration. Thus far, the team has completed seven seasons of full-scale excavation and two on-site study seasons. This spring and summer we will complete another study season and will likely add another year of excavation (plans are still evolving).

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Project: Aegean Interactions with the Levant at Tel Kabri

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Eric H. Cline

Project Web Site:

Tel Kabri, located in the western Galilee region of Israel, was the center of a Canaanite polity during the Middle Bronze Age. Within its palace have been found the remains of painted plaster floors and wall frescoes, which may be the earliest-known Western art yet found in the Eastern Mediterranean.

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Project: The Joint Expedition to Caesarea Maritima

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Robert J. Bull

This is an ASOR affiliated project.

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Project: Tel Gezer Excavation and Publication Project

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Steven Ortiz, Samuel Wolff

Project Web Site:

The Tel Gezer project is investigating social and political boundaries, state formation, and regionalism in the Iron Age. Gezer is an ideal site as it has a rich history throughout the 1st and 2nd millennia BCE. The excavations have revealed a well planned Iron Age city with administrative buildings, fortifications, and a domestic quarter.

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Project: Joint Sepphoris Project (JSP)/ Sepphoris Regional Project (SRP)

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Eric M. Meyers, Carol L. Meyers

The project's excavations focused on the residential area of the western acropolis of Sepphoris. The study of domestic units--including many miqva'ot, shops, roadways, paths, home industry, etc.--contributes to an understanding of a leading city of Galilee from the last century BCE until well into the Byzantine period.

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Project: Yotvata Roman Fort Project

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Jodi Magness, Gwyn Davies

Project Web Site:

The project has completed its excavation phase and the Directors are currently engaged in the collation of the specialist reports and in preparing the data for publication.

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Project: Tell el-Hesi Regional Survey

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Jeffrey A. Blakely, James W. Hardin, Jr.

Project Web Site:

The Joint Archaeological Expedition to Tell el-Hesi conducted regional survey from 1970 through 1983. In 2004 and 2008 the Tell el-Hesi Regional Survey constructed a GIS database for the region and resurveyed the region. These materials will be published as part of the Archaeological Survey of Israel: Ruhama Map (97).

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Project: The Galilee Prehistory Project

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Yorke Rowan, Morag Kersel

Project Web Site:

The new field research initiative launched by the Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago is designed to examine the dramatic changes in the relationship of villages, ritual sites and mortuary practices during the poorly understood Chalcolithic period (4500-3600 BC).

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Project: Excavations at Tel Zahara

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Susan L. Cohen

Tel Zahara is a small settlement site in the central Jordan Valley, approximately 5 km west of Beth Shean. Occupation at the site dates to the Roman, Hellenistic, Persian, and Early and Middle Bronze Ages. Excavations focus on examining patterns of rural settlement and subsistence in the southern Levant.

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Project: Archaeological Excavations at Khirbet Qana

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Tom McCollough

Project Web Site:

This project is the continuation of the excavations of a small village (probable Cana of the Galilee) located in lower Galilee. The excavations, which began in June 1998 under the direction of Douglas R. Edwards, have exposed significant architecture and artifacts dating from the Early Roman through the Mamluk periods.

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Project: Lahav Research Project, Phases I-II

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Joe D. Seger

Project Web Site:

The Lahav Research Project is a program of investigations at Tell Halif in Israel. Efforts include mound excavations along with environmental and ethnographic research. Field work for Phases I (between 1976 and 1980) and II (between 1983 and 1989) is completed. Nineteen strata of occupation were identified. The publication of results is ongoing.

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Project: Lahav Research Project, Phase III

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Paul Jacobs

Project Web Site:

The Lahav Research Project is a program of investigations at Tell Halif in Israel. In Phase III excavations investigated Iron II 8th c. BCE use of living spaces in houses along the fortification. Work was also directed to the large corpus of ceramic figurines as representing religious activity at Halif.

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Project: Lahav Research Project, Phase IV

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Oded Borowski

Phase IV of the Lahav Research Project is now taking a break from excavations and is going to concentrate on the analysis of the materials from the last three season (2007-2009) and their preparation for final publication.

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Project: Tel Miqne-Ekron Publication

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): S. Gitin, T. Dothan

Project Web Site:

Ekron (Tel Miqne) Philistine capital, fortified city--Iron I-II, Strata VII-I, 1175-604 BCE. Iron I, monumental buildings with cultic connotations and material culture with Aegean affinities. Iron IIC, largest olive oil production center currently known from antiquity with largest assemblage of Israelite 4-horned incense altars. Focus on process of acculturation.

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Project: Borders and Crossroads: Arameans, Phoenicians, and Israelites

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Robert A. Mullins

Project Web Site:

Abel Beth Maacah is a prominent site near the Lebanese border, at the frontier of the ancient polities of Israel, Aram, and Phoenicia. The site provides a rare opportunity to study the nature of cultural exchange and identity formation in a "borderlands" region.

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Project: Excavations at Shikhin

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): James R. Strange

Project Web Site:

Shikhin was a pottery manufacturing center for Roman Galilee located just north of Sepphoris. The Roman road that connected Sepphoris to the Acco-Ptolemais/Tiberias highway passed just to the east of the village. Hence, Shikhin was ideally situated to distribute its products on well-developed Galilean system of roads and paths.

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Project: Jezreel Expedition

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Jennie Ebeling

Project Web Site:

The Jezreel Expedition team is intent on exploring the archaeology and history of 'greater' Jezreel - including Tel Jezreel and 'Ein Jezreel (the spring) - during some 7000 years of near-continuous occupation from the Late Neolithic period through the 20th century CE.

Project: The USF Excavations at Sepphoris

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): James F. Strange

Project Web Site:

The USF Excavations at Sepphoris seeks to expand its understanding of the large (60 x 40 m.) basilical style building it has been excavating since 1988. In its ER phase the building stood at the NW corner of the intersection of the Cardo and the Decumanus and featured white mosaics. We know a great deal about the history and use of the building at its western half, but now seek equal information about its western extent, which we have hypothesized was a rectangular and partially roof courtyard. Our goals are archaeological and architectural, seeking solutions to the use of the building room by room, the use of the building in its municipal seeting, and possible mentions of the building in ancient literature and epigraphy to achieve a social archaeological and social historical view of the building, its technology, spatial organization, human behavior clusters within, and destruction/looting.

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Project: Tel Akko Total Archaeology Project

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Ann E. Killebrew

For millennia, Akko has served as a major urban maritime center and nexus connecting the Levant and Mediterranean regions. The Tel Akko Total Archaeology Project combines excavation, conservation, public archaeology, site presentation/development, and an innovative field school to explore Akko's rich tangible and non-tangible history and heritage--past, present, and future.

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Project: The Leon Levy Expedition to Ashkelon

Country: Israel

Project Director(s): Daniel M. Master

Project Web Site:

Since 1985, the mission of the Leon Levy Expedition to Ashkelon has to understand the ancient world through the archaeological investigation of the site of Ashkelon, Israel. We undertake multidisciplinary excavations which seek to understand the complexities of human life at Ashkelon from the Bronze Age through the Crusades.

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Project: Ayn Gharandal Archaeological Project (AGAP)

Country: Jordan

The 'Ayn Gharandal Archaeological Project (AGAP) seeks to contribute to our understanding of Jordan's rich and diverse cultural heritage through documentation and publication of the archaeological materials and site of 'Ayn Gharandal in the Wadi Arabah.

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Project: The Archaeological Expedition to Khirbat Iskandar, Jordan and its Environs

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Suzanne Richard

Project Web Site:

Khirbat Iskandar, Jordan is an EBA site situated 35 miles south of Amman, known best for its substantial EB IV remains, including a storeroom, reused fortifications, and cemeteries. Recent work has uncovered a substantial urban EB II-III settlement within the fortifications, as well as an earlier stratum with distinctive structures.

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Project: Dhiban Excavation and Development Project

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Benjamin W. Porter

Project Web Site:

The Dhiban Excavation and Development Project investigates how agricultural communities over the past five millennia subsisted in a resource-scarce marginal environment, often under imperial domination. The project's team consists of archaeologists, geologists, historians, ethnographers, and materials specialists. One important goal is developing the site for tourism in collaboration with the local community and national government agencies.

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Project: Bir Madhkur Project

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Andrew M. Smith II

Project Web Site:

The Bir Madhkur Project centers on the site of Bir Madhkur, an administrative hub in the Classical periods, where soldiers monitored the activities of farmers, pastoralists, and merchants. The project's primary goal is to understand of how these groups defined themselves in relation to their environment and to one another.

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Project: Madaba Plains Project-`Umayri

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Douglas R. Clark

Project Web Site:

This is an ASOR affiliated project. Tall al-`Umayri, part of the Madaba Plains Project, has revealed remains from the Early Bronze Age through the Late Iron 2/Persian periods, with later architecture from a Hellenistic farmstead, Roman villa and Byzantine farm. Best represented to this point is the LB/early Iron 1 period containing remains covered by a site-wide destruction in the early Iron 1 period. Five seasonal reports (1984-1994) have already been published and a sixth (1996 and 1998) is in press.

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Project: Expedition to the Dead Sea Plain

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): R. Tom Schaub

Project Web Site:

A multidisciplinary regional project exploring the life styles and burial practices of a series of town and cemeteries during the Early Bronze Age in the southeastern Dead Plain of Jordan.

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Project: The Shammakh to Ayl Archaeological Survey

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Burton MacDonald

The main objective of The Shammakh to Ayl Archaeological Survey, Southern Jordan (SAAS) project is to discover, record, and interpret archaeological sites in an area of approximately 600 km2. The territory, ca. 30 km (N-S) by ca. 20 km (E-W), investigated is in the southern segment of the Transjordanian Plateau.

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Project: Karak Resources Project (KRP)

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Gerald (Jerry) L. Mattingly

Project Web Site:

During five seasons, Karak Resources Project has conducted regional scientific studies, archaeological survey (157 new sites), and excavation at Khirbat al-Mudaybi' (21 squares in four excavation fields). This fortress was built in Iron Age II and occupied sporadically in the Late Byzantine-Early Islamic, Middle Islamic, and Late Islamic periods.

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Project: Madaba Plains Project - Tall Hisban Phase II

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Bethany J. Walker, Oystein LaBianca

Project Web Site:

Phase II investigations at Tall Hisban builds on research during the seventies by the Heshbon Expedition (Phase I). Nine field seasons, of which six have involved excavation work, have been mounted since the first pilot season in 1996. Phase II has emphasized anthropological and global history concerns and has focused on Hisban's Islamic cultural heritage.

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Project: Madaba Plains Project - Tall Jalul Excavations

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Randall W. Younker, Constance Gane, Paul Gregor

Project Web Site:

The 2010 excavations continued to expose the Iron Age water system in Field G that was initially uncovered in the 2008 season. Excavation will also continue in the Islamic Village to the south, where a Mamluk chamber, discovered in the 2009 season will continue to be cleared. Pottery found during the 2009 season will be reconstructed and drawn in preparation for publication.

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Project: Humayma Excavation Project. (fieldwork)

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): M. Barbara Reeves, John Peter Oleson

Project Web Site:

Since 1986 the Humayma Excavation Project's surveys and excavations at ancient Hawara (modern Humyama, Jordan) have yielded valuable information concerning this Nabataean-early Islamic site's hydraulic system, its Roman fort and adjacent vicus (civilian community), five Byzantine churches, and the Abbasid family's qasr and mosque. Directors: J. Oleson; M. B. Reeves.

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Project: Petra Garden and Pool Complex Excavation Project

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Leigh-Ann Bedal

Project Web Site:

This is an ASOR affiliated project. The Petra Garden and Pool Complex is one component of an elite (royal) complex at the heart of the ancient city of Petra, Jordan. The ongoing archaeological investigation of the garden site provides important information regarding Nabataean concepts of landscape design utilizing water, vegetation and monumental architecture to as a presentation of power and status in the Hellenistic-Roman East.

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Project: Excavations at Tell er-Rumeith

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Nancy Lapp

Tell er-Rumeith was one of the last excavations Paul Lapp directed before his death. His only preliminary reports were those in the ASOR Newsletters. As noted there, Rumeith was a neatly stratified site, that offered possibilities for learning about Israel's relations with Syria during the Iron age. Being one of his latest excavations, Paul brought to fruition much he had learned in his earlier work. Field notebooks, as well as pottery and photography notes, are in good condition and very helpful for the site's interpretation. James Sauer spent over a year as a student working with the pottery. As a result much pottery is drawn and typed. Tristan Barako, with a White-Levy grant, has continued this work and will bring it to fruition with a study of the stratification and pottery typology for publication. Together with reports on the other finds, now being studied, collected, and edited, this will make up the final publication of the Lapp excavations at Tell er-Rumeith.

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Project: Paul W. Lapp's Excavations at Araq el-Emir

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Nancy Lapp

Project Web Site:

This is a continuation of the publication of Paul W. Lapp's excavations at Araq el-Emir. One volume of the final report of the 1961 and 1962 excavations has appeared (AASOR 47). What remains for a second volume is mainly the publication of the pottery and stratification of the Byzantine period from the Qasr (to be published by Robin Brown who directed a sounding in the Byzantine remains of the Qasr in 1976), the Iron age from the Village (being studied for publication by a graduate student at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary), and the Hellenistic and Roman from the Village (studied by Michael Zimmerman in a dissertation at Brown University under Martha Jowkowsky and being prepared for publication). In addition there are some smaller reports on the objects which will go into the second volume. The volume will be edited and seen through to publication by Nancy Lapp.

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Project: Roman Aqaba Project

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): S. Thomas Parker

This is an ASOR affiliated project. The project is examining the economy of the Roman port of Aila on the Red Sea, now within modern Aqaba in Jordan. The research includes regional archaeological survey, excavation, and analysis of artifacts. The evidence suggests that Aila participated in long distance trade of bulk commodities and also produced goods shipped beyond the borders of the Empire.

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Project: Eastern Badia Archaeological Research Project

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Gary O. Rollefson, Yorke Rowan

This is an ASOR affiliated project.

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Project: Edom Lowlands Regional Archaeological Project

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Thomas E. Levy, Mohammad Najjar

Project Web Site:

This study of Iron Age state formation in southern Jordan is deeply rooted in three conceptual frameworks: a) general anthropological theory concerning processes of secondary state formation and the evolution of social power, b) historical models concerning the Iron Age based on Anthropology, Biblical and extra-Biblical sources, and c) Middle Range theory that aims at linking raw archaeological data with more complex generalizations and conclusions about the past based on the hard archaeological evidence retrieved from the 2006 excavations at Khirbat en-Nahas (KEN) one of the largest ancient copper production sites in the eastern Mediterranean. To test these models, the control of time (to measure social change) and space (the context in which artifacts are discovered) are critical. This project achieves this though the application of high precision radiocarbon dating and statistical modeling and the use of a Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-based Digital Archaeology system. The GIS system also promotes rapid publication and the dissemination of project results.

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Project: Reassessment of the Excavations at Tell Safut

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Owen Chesnut

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This is an ASOR affiliated project. Tell Safut was excavated over 10 seasons from 1982-2001. No finals reports were ever published. The goal of this project is to publish a complete summary of the history of the site, based on analysis of the stratigraphy, pottery, architecture, and small finds.

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Project: Umm al-Jimal Project

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Bert de Vries

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The Umm el-Jimal Project is a study of the rural settlement of Umm el-Jimal in its environmental /historical contexts, including the Paleolithic, Nabataean, Roman, Byzantine, Early Islamic, Modern eras. The project is currently in publication, which includes real and virtual site development involving the living community.

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Project: The Druze Marsh Archaeological and Paleo-ecological Project (DMAAP)

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): April Nowell

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This is an ASOR affiliated project. The wetlands of North Azraq (Jordan) disappeared three decades ago but for millennia they were a true oasis in the desert. The Druze Marsh Archaeology and Paleoecology project documents the complex relationships that existed in the Pleistocene between plants, animals, ancient humans and water in this fragile desert ecosystem.

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Project: Wadi Arabah Earthquake Project

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Tina M. Niemi

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The Wadi ‘Arabah Earthquake Project seeks to collect stratigraphic, geomorphic, and geophysical data preserved in the geologic and archaeological record that will help us better understand the history of past earthquakes and their societal impact and to help characterize the future earthquake potential in Southern Jordan.

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Project: Humayma Excavation Project, Publication Phase.

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): John Peter Oleson

Project Web Site:

After survey and excavation at Humayma since 1986, Oleson has handed the continued fieldwork over to M. Barbara Reeves. Oleson is concentrating on preparing the final report volumes about the excavations. The page proofs of Volume 1 (550 pp.) were read in September 2010 and the printed volume should appear in November 2010 in the ASOR Excavation Reports. The writing of Volume 2 is well advanced, and technical reports for Volume 2 and 3 are either in hand or in the final process of preparation. Oleson hopes to submit Volume 2 for publication in the ASOR Excavation Reports by the end of 2011.

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Project: Wadi ath-Thamad Project

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): P.M. Michele Daviau, Christopher J. Gohm

Project Web Site:

Excavation at Khirbat al-Mudayna is designed to explore the Iron Age town and the Nabataean-Early Roman period settlement at its foot. On the mound, Fields A and C are located on the northern end, where a six-chambered gate complex was exposed. In Field B, we exposed a portion of the casemate wall that was linked to the gate and three pillared buildings. dedicated to the textile industry. Additional structures appear to be domestic and are filled with pottery, artefacts, figurines and the tools of daily life.
A regional survey is also conducted during each field season in an attempt to locate new sites, document the remains of sites previously known, and study the evidence for land use and water management in antiquity. three seasons of excavation were carried out at the Roman castellum, az-Zuna, and two at a pottery Neolithic village.

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Project: 'Ayn Gharandal Archaeological Project (AGAP):

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Robert Darby

The 'Ayn Gharandal Archaeological Project (AGAP) seeks to contribute to our understanding of Jordan's rich and diverse cultural heritage through documentation and publication of the archaeological materials and site of 'Ayn Gharandal in the Wadi Arabah.

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Project: Hellenistic Petra Project

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): David Graf

During 2004-2007, the Hellenistic Petra Project directed by David F. Graf discovered the first stratified levels of the Persian and Hellenistic period at Petra adjacent to the Colonnaded Street in the Civic Center. Petra--Attic black-glazed ware, Persian types, and numismatic finds of the 5th/4th century BCE. A fourth season will be conducted in the summer of 2013.

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Project: Petra North Ridge Project

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Megan A. Perry

The Petra North Ridge Project plans to excavate rock-cut tombs and domestic structures of the 1st to 6th centuries A.D., providing insights into the population of Petra in this period. Three field seasons, including conservation and presentation of this area as a cultural resource, are envisioned in 2012, 2014, and 2016.

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Project: Landscapes of the Dead: Aerial and Pedestrian Site Monitoring at Fifa, Jordan

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Morag Kersel

Project Web Site:

The primary objective of the Landscapes of the Dead Research Project is to assess (through aerial photography and an intensive pedestrian survey) the Early Bronze Age (EBA, c.3500-2000 BCE) archaeological landscape at Fifa in order to better understand both the ancient and modern uses of a mortuary site.

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Project: Madaba Plains Project--Umayri Publication Project

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Larry G. Herr, Douglas R. Clark

Project Web Site:

Located about 13 km south of the 7th Circle of Amman on the airport highway, the site was occupied from the Early Bronze Age until the Middle Ages, but primarily in the Bronze and Iron Ages. This is an ASOR affiliated project conducted by the Madaba Plains Project in Jordan. Our goal is to publish the seasonal and final reports for the first twelve seasons of archaeological excavations at Tall al-`Umayri from 1984 to 2008. Although five seasonal publications of the Tall al-`Umayri Publication Project have appeared and a sixth is in press, we anticipate five more that the PI must complete. Four final publications are also in the works: Early Bronze Age: Tim Harrison; MB-LB: Kent Bramlett; Iron 1: Doug Clark and Monique Vincent; Iron 2: Larry Herr.

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Project: Hesban Final Publication Series

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Lawrence T. Geraty, Oystein LaBianca

Project Web Site:

The Hesban Final Publication Series deploys stratigraphic analysis, food systems, political ecology and global history as frameworks for interpreting the archaeological and other finds from Tell Hesban (also known as Tall Hisban and Heshbon). To date nine volumes have been completed out of a total of fourteen final report volumes.

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Project: The Moab Archaeological Resource Survey

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Stephen H. Savage

Project Web Site:

The Moab Archaeological Resource Survey (MARS) was established in 1999 to gather information about archaeological sites in the Madaba Plain. The project is committed to locating and documenting sites of all periods in the research area. We will be conducting archaeological surveys of the region to discover unknown sites, and conducting detailed studies of the known sites in the region that have not been thoroughly documented in the past.

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Project: Busayra Cultural Heritage Project (BCHP)

Country: Jordan

Project Director(s): Benjamin W. Porter

The BCHP investigates the role that Busayra played in the political and economic development of the Iron Age polity of Edom. The project is also implementing a plan for the site's long-term management and protection.

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Project: Syro-American Expedition to Apamea, Syria (The Great Roman Theatre at Apaema)

Country: Syria

Project Director(s): Cynthia Finlayson

The Great Roman Theatre at Apamea, Syria is the largest extant edifice of its kind in the Roman Empire (Pompey's Theatre in Rome is the only known theatre of a larger size, but this edifice is currently buried under the modern buildings of the city). The Syro-American Expedition to Apamea is currently excavating and researching the Great Theatre, in addition to a 100m concession on all sides, in preparation for the theatre's restoration. Initial results of the past three seasons indicate that the Great Theatre at Apamea was a water catchment facility with the capability to host naumachi as well as pagan water/fertility festivals like the Maiumas. Soundings below the present Roman-era orchestra floor indicate previous Hellenistic occupation of the site.

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Project: The Tell Qarqur Expedition

Country: Syria

Project Director(s): Jesse Casana, Rudolph Dornemann

Project Web Site:

This is an ASOR affiliated project. Excavations at Tell Qarqur, located in the Orontes River Valley of western Syria, are jointly sponsored by ASOR and the University of Arkansas. The project seeks to build a better understanding of regional settlement history and to refine archaeological sequences from the Neolithic to the Mamluk period.

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Project: The Syro-American Expedition to Palmyra, Syria

Country: Syria

Project Director(s): Cynthia Finlayson, Walid al-As

Search for the missing temple and shrines at Atargatis, Malakbel, and Aglibol. The Syro-American Expedition to Palmyra is currently excavating a large tell just northeast of the Efqa Spring on the south side of the Damascus Road as part of an exploration of this area of the ancient city associated in literary sources with the missing Temple of Atargatis, a Sacred Garden, and the missing shrines of Malakbel and Aglibol, the ancient baals of the Efqa Spring. A large building complex has been exposed during the past three seasons yielding symposium tesserae associated with Malakbel and Aglibol and Atargatis. This is a ten-year ongoing archaeological project dedicated to research, scholarship, and field school training of both western and Syrian archaeology students.

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Project: Tayinat Archaeological Project

Country: Turkey

Project Director(s): Timothy P. Harrison

Project Web Site:

The Tayinat Archaeological Project (TAP) is investigating the archaeological history of the Bronze and Iron Age site of Tell Tayinat, which served as the capital of a succession of small territorial states centered in the Amuq Plain in the North Orontes Valley, Turkey. During the Iron Age, Tayinat was called Kunulua, royal city of the Neo-Hittite Kingdom of Palistin/Patina/Unqi, and Kinalia during the Neo-Assyrian imperial phase.

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Project: Mopsos Landscape Archaeology Project, Cilicia, Turkey

Country: Turkey

Project Director(s): Ann E. Killebrew

The Mopsos Landscape Archaeology Project represents the first systematic archaeological investigation of the Bay of Iskenderun (Turkey). With a combined approach that utilizes historical texts, material culture analyses, environmental studies and survey data, our goal includes reconstructing a comprehensive picture of the archaeological identities of cultural groups in southeastern Cilicia.

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Project: The Excavations of Paul W. Lapp at Taanach

Country: West Bank

Project Director(s): Nancy Lapp

The purpose of the project is the complete publication of Paul W. Lapp's excavations at Taanach during the 1960's. This includes the stratification of the site, the pottery and its typology, and finds. One volume on the Iron age pottery has appeared and two small monographs on the loom weights and cultic artifacts are published. There are two dissertations concerning the Early Bronze age and the Iron age pottery in the preparation stage for publication as a part of the final Taanach publications. One of the authors has a Fellowship to work on the material for publication in the next year. Another dissertation of the Middle Bronze age material is under way. A volume of special reports is being edited.

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Project: Joint Expedition to Tell Balatah/Shechem

Country: West Bank

Project Director(s): Edward F. Campbell, Jr

This is an ASOR affiliated project. Expedition in the field 1956-1973. Field phase under G. Ernest Wright (McCormick, then Harvard). Final volumes I-IV have appeared: III on stratigraphy and architecture, I, II and IV monographic ceramic and regional studies. Shechem V on Late Bronze in final stages of preparation; Shechem VI on Iron Age is proceeding. No Kleinefunde volume is in preparation.

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Project: The Excavation of Tell er Ras on Mount Gerizim

Country: West Bank

Project Director(s): Robert J. Bull

Tell er Ras is the third highest peak on Mt. Gerizim. The excavations were licensed bythe Jordanian government. Between 1962 and 1970, three super-imposed stonestructures were excavated: a Greek style Zeus temple, a rough-hewn coursed stone altar(early Samaritan) and three courses of well hewn and fitted stone in a foundation trench.

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