(photo credit: Sharon Zuckerman)
Archeologists have discovered large jars filled with 3,300-year-old burnt wheat
at the excavation sites of the Tel Hatzor National Park in the Upper
A team from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the Israel
Nature and Parks Authority (INPA) uncovered 14 large pithoi-style bulk storage
jugs filled with the wheat inside what was a storage room in a monumental,
palace-like building from the Canaanite period (2,000-3,000 BCE), the INPA said
After the jars are fully exposed the researchers will transfer
them to conservation and restoration laboratories. Afterwards, the palace will
be covered up again until the next excavation season.
excavations at Hatzor have been conducted by Hebrew University in cooperation
with the INPA for the past couple of decades. In 2007, according to the INPA,
the hill was given World Heritage Site status.
“Hatzor flourished during
the Middle Canaanite period (1,750 BCE) and during the Israelite period (900
BCE), and generated the biggest fortified complex in Israel during this period,”
said Dr. Zvika Tsuk, chief archeologist of the INPA.
“The city was one of
the most important towns for the duration of the Fertile Crescent, maintaining
trade relations with cities in Babylon and Syria, and substantial quantities of
tin for the bronze industry were sent to the city.”
excavations in the 1950s and ’60s were led by Yigael Yadin, the archeologist
responsible for discoveries at Masada and Megiddo, according to Tsuk. Tel Hatzor
received World Heritage Site status, alongside the biblical remains at Megiddo
and Beersheba, in large part due to Yadin’s work, Tsuk said.
system built at Hatzor is one of the largest and most amazing that have been
exposed in the country, and everyone who continues to explore the site finds
more and more secrets and details about our past in Israel,” he
Prof. Amnon Ben-Tor, of the Hebrew University, likewise praised
the work of Yadin, noting that further excavations at the site were halted after
his research until 1990.
“Since then, every summer we reveal another
layer in the history of Tel Hatzor and the land of Israel in the Canaanite
period – one of the most significant in the life of the Jewish people,” Ben- Tor