AN AERIEL view of the farmhouse uncovered by the IAA..
(photo credit: IAA)
A well-preserved 2,800-yearold farmhouse composed of 23 rooms was unearthed in recent weeks during archeological excavations undertaken by the Antiquities Authority in Rosh Ha’ayin, the authority announced Monday.
According to Amit Shadman, the authority’s excavation director, the farmhouse extends across an area of 30 m. by 40 m.
and was built in the 8th century BCE, during the time of the Assyrian conquest.
“Farmhouses during this period served as small settlements of sorts, whose inhabitants participated in processing agricultural produce,” said Shadman. “The numerous winepresses discovered in the vicinity of the settlement indicate the wine industry was the most important branch of agriculture in the region.”
“A large silo, which was used to store grain, shows that the ancient residents were also engaged in growing cereal,” Shadman added.
The archeologist noted that the building continued to be used during the Persian period, also known as the time of the Return to Zion, in the 6th century BCE, and in the Hellenistic period, which began in the country with the arrival of Alexander the Great.
“With Alexander’s victory over the Persian army in 333 BCE, he embarked upon numerous successful military campaigns,” said Shadman.
“His campaign in Israel did not encounter any special difficulties and the country opened its gates to the great warrior.”
Moreover, evidence of a Greek presence in the region was uncovered on one of the floors of the building in the form of a rare silver coin bearing the military leader’s name.
On one side of the coin is the image of the god Zeus, while the head of Heracles appears on the other side.
“In light of this impressive building’s excellent state of preservation, the Antiquities Authority and Construction Ministry decided to conserve the structure in situ for the benefit of the city’s residents and the visiting public,” said Shadman.