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Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Contents

Page

 

Introduction

5

Update on the 2005 Survey Results

6

The Jarash North-West Necropolis

6

Objectives of the Field Survey

10

Methods of Field Survey

11

Mapping

11

Topography and Geology

12

Geological Notes by Don Boyer

13

The Database

17

The Survey Areas

18

East of the City

18

South Wadi Jarash

18

Wadi Deir

19

NW of the City

19

Overview of Site Types

20

Quarries

20

Rock Cut Tombs (Hypogea)

20

Mausolea

24

Sarcophagi

25

Rock-cut graves

25

Roman Milestones

26

Inscriptions

27

Architectural fragments

28

Artefact scatters

29

Water Channels, Cisterns, Basins, Springs, Mills &Water Management

31

Monumental Structures

35

Platforms

36

Other types of sites

36

Discussion of Survey Results

39

Threats to the Archaeological Resource

39

Recommendations

40

 

Conclusions

42

Proposals for further work

42

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Acknowledgements

43

Bibliography

43

Contact Addresses

46

Comments & Initial Observations on the Surface Collections by Margaret Struckmeier

47

Summary of Dr Ina Kehrberg’s Preliminary Observations on the JHS05 Surface Collections

50

Summary Press Release for Munjazat

52

N.B. The following 3 sections are in the full report on the accompanying disk

Site List with GPS Points

54

Artefact and Crate Packing List and deposition details

68

List of Primary Records and Location

82

List of Figures

Figure 1:

Map of 2005 and 2008 survey areas showing all sites

end

Figure 2: Map of Wadi Deir (N Wadi Jarash) showing all sites

end

Figure 3: Map of East of the City, northern area showing all sites

end

Figure 4: Map of East of the City, southern area, and South Wadi Jarash, showing all sites

end

Figure 5: Map of North West of the City

end

Figure 6: Table showing types and numbers of sites

38

List of Plates

Plate 1: Aerial View of NW Necropolis, 2008

6

Plate 2: Sarcophagus smashed in the last 3 years

7

Plate 3: Broken pottery in fresh robbers’ upcast outside Tomb 44

8

Plate 4: Damage to Site 43 from bulldozing

8

Plate 5: Detail of sarcophagus smashed by recent dumping

9

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Plate 6: Rendzina soils developed on natural terraces and wadi bottom

14

Plate 7: View (looking SW) of well exposed block quarry Site 034

15

Plate 8: Column Quarry – Suf area, 5km north of Jarash

15

Plate 9: Site 202 - niches cut into soft brecciated limestone immediately below hard caprock horizon

16

Plate 10: View of Rendzina soil profile overlain by modern dumped material

17

Plate 11: Quarry site 326

20

Plate 12: Tomb site 326 with robbers’ spoil

21

Plate 13: Interior of Tomb site 486

22

Plate 14: Hypogaeum Site 299, with grave niche and relief panel

23

Plate 15: Mausoleum Site 469

24

Plate 16: Sarcophagus site 338

25

Plate 17: Rock-cut graves 286 and tomb entrance 287

26

Plate 18: Milestone Site 423

27

Plate 19: Inscription site 462

28

Plate 20: Inscriptions 245 and 271

28

Plate 21: Bulldozed architecture and column detail, site 389

29

Plate 22: Architectural fragment, Site 329

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Plate 23: Elements of water channel blocks, Site 400

31

Plate 24: Cistern Site 274

32

Plate 25: Possible mill, site 393

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Plate 26: Mill Site 505

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Plate 27: Bulldozed monumental architecture, Site 462

35

Plate 28: Olive press at Site 486

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Plate 29: Traditional house, Site 225

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Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Archive Material on attached 2 x DVD with this report

GPS co-ordinates and levels for all sites

QGIS (GIS information for all sites in QGIS format)

Illustrations (all maps and Site 43)

Lists (Finds, photographs, sites)

Colour photographs (small images)

Preliminary Report on the Pottery and Small Finds from JHS 2005 by Ina Kehrberg.

A full copy of this report, including Site List with GPS Points, Artefact and Crate Packing List and deposition details, List of Primary Records and Location

Jarash Hinterland Survey Database

Colour digital photographs

1926 and 1953 aerial photographs and 2003 satellite images

1979 1:2500 map of Jarash

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Jarash is an archaeological site and landscape of international importance. This survey shows that rapid urban development is destroying 10% of the archaeological sites around the city every year. Urgent action is required by the Department of Antiquities, in accordance with their remit to protect and preserve Jordan’s archaeological heritage.

INTRODUCTION

A three week season of field survey of the Jarash Hinterland was carried out between 6 September and 25 September 2008. The 2008 season is the second season of a project covering an intended area of 10 sq km centred on the Roman City of Gerasa.

The project is directed by Prof. David Kennedy (University of Western Australia) and Fiona Baker (Firat Archaeological Services Ltd, Scotland) assisted by Paul Sharman (Orkney Research Centre for Archaeology); David Connolly and Margaret Struckmeier (Connolly Heritage Consultancy, Scotland); Anne Poepjes (University of Western Australia); Don Boyer and Ann Boyer (Roman Archaeology Group, UWA), Andrew Card (University of Western Australia) and Naomi Poepjes. Ina Kehrberg (University of Sydney) is the ceramicist and finds specialist.

The 2005 survey area covered an area of 0.6 sq km on the west side of the ancient city between the city wall and the top of the hill along which the Zahr al Saraw road runs N-S. The field results of this survey, which recorded 223 archaeological sites, are reported in the Jarash Hinterland Survey 2005 Season Preliminary Report accompanied by the project database and all digital photographs, which has been archived to the Department of Antiquities (DoA), Amman in accordance with DoA requirements.

The 2008 survey area consists of the largely developed hillside to the N and NW of the Roman city in Zhara as Siraw, beside the Suf road; the northern Wadi Jarash or Wadi Deir as far as Birketein; the developed hillsides to the E of the main N-S road Route 15 (old Irbid Road) that divides the ancient city in two and N of the new Irbid road that runs E-W along the S side of the city, focussed on the land outside the Roman city wall; and the southern Wadi Jarash. The 2008 survey area covered a total area of 1.9 sq km and recorded 402 sites. The survey area has now encircled the ancient city and the total area surveyed in 2005 and 2008 covers 2.5 sq km and has recorded 625 sites.

The general JHS area is covered with limestone outcrops and has the deep red rendzina soil or terra rossa that is common on the limestone outcrops in the northwest of Jordan. The fields in both the north and south Wadi Jarash have more mixed topsoil indicative of centuries of cultivation. The survey area comprises developed land for domestic housing, waste ground, olive groves, fields and grazing land. A great deal of construction work for new houses and roads is in progress within the survey area.

The area around Jarash is currently being developed as the city expands and well over one hundred new houses are built each year. The new development and expansion of the city has escalated since about 2000 and it is because of this that the Jarash

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Hinterland Survey (JHS) project was instigated. Very little survey or excavation work has taken place outside the walls of the Roman city and the archaeological resource outside the city walls is poorly recorded and little understood. In the face of development, the JHS seeks to identify and record archaeological sites threatened with destruction by the development work and to preserve the archaeological sites at least by record.

UPDATE ON THE 2005 SURVEY

Of the 223 sites surveyed in 2005, 188 of these sites were visited again in 2008 to check on their condition. The sites not visited were mostly quarried outcrops. Of the sites visited the condition of 121 sites remained unchanged, 31 had been damaged and 35 had been destroyed by new development. In summary, 65% of the sites visited were unchanged after three years. This means that at least 30% of the sites recorded in 2005 had been damaged or completely destroyed and from these figures we could extrapolate that 10% of the archaeological sites within the immediate environs of Jarash are being destroyed every year.

Of the sites that had been damaged since 2005, the NW Necropolis site (Sites 43 – 63 inclusive) shows the most overall damage. A short section on these sites is included here.

THE JARASH NORTH-WEST NECROPOLIS

is included here. T HE J ARASH N ORTH -W EST N ECROPOLIS Plate 1: Aerial

Plate 1: Aerial view of the NW Necropolis, 2008

During the 2005 season of the Jarash Hinterland Survey, a concentration of high status Roman tombs were located in an area of open ground located 600m to the NW of the Roman city walls. These are on the line of the Roman road leading out of the

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

NW gate. The surviving necropolis area measures approximately 200m N-S x 150m E-W. The UTM co-ordinate for the site is E771636 / N3575954 (see Fig. 5).

This parcel of land belongs, at least in part, to the Department of Antiquities. It may have been purchased as a result of the 1991 rescue excavations (Smadeh et al 1992).

The tombs and elements of tombs identified at this cemetery in 2005 were deemed to be under threat from illegal excavation, quarrying and rubbish dumping. This site was identified as one of the top three sites offering the greatest archaeological potential and as most under threat out of the 217 sites identified by the 2005 survey. This observation remains the same.

This site was first notified to the Department of Antiquities in 1982 and its significance is further stated in an article in ADAJ (1992) by Smadeh et al. This article primarily reports on salvage excavation of tombs immediately to the south, which were destroyed by new housing development, but clearly illustrates the necropolis and in particular 2005 Site 043, the Palmyrene tomb. Smadeh et al also note that two sarcophagi pillaged from Site 043 in 1985 are actually at Jarash Museum.

from S ite 043 in 1985 are actually at Jarash Museum. Plate 2: Sarcophagus smashed in

Plate 2: Sarcophagus smashed in the last 3 years

The necropolis comprises at least 10 tombs and many architectural fragments including stone tomb doors, Syrian niches, Corinthian column capitals, pediment fragments and numerous undecorated architectural fragments. Tombs 044 and 045 have now also been confirmed as high status hypogaea, but unfortunately by illicit excavation and looting in the last three years, not by archaeological investigation.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season Plate 3: Broken pottery in fresh robbers’ upcast outside Tomb 44

Plate 3: Broken pottery in fresh robbers’ upcast outside Tomb 44

The 2008 survey visited the necropolis site and was dismayed to find the tombs had been further damaged by bulldozers, which have been levelling parts of the site, and by increased dumping of rubble and boulders on the site, which has shattered a sarcophagus.

boulde rs on the site, which has shattered a sarcophagus. Plate 4: Damage to Site 43

Plate 4: Damage to Site 43 from bulldozing

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season Plate 5: Detail of sarcophagus smashed by recent dumping In order

Plate 5: Detail of sarcophagus smashed by recent dumping

In order to protect the tombs from further damage and looting and to protect them in the long term immediate and urgent action is required.

Erection of a 2m high post and wire mesh fence around the site bedded into concrete base pads. A breeze block wall is not recommended as it would cause further ground disturbance and would also shield the site from view allowing tomb robbers to operate unseen. The fence would prevent access to the area by heavy machinery and stop dumping of rubble and rubbish.

Clearance of dumped rubble and retrieval of Roman architectural and masonry fragments under archaeological supervision. Architectural fragments to be stored on the site and not removed form the site with a view to restoration in the long term.

Detailed photography of the site and all tombs once the modern disturbances and dumps have been removed

Scale drawings of the individual sites once the modern dumping has been removed.

Surface collection of pottery associated with the individual tombs

This preliminary work would allow the site to be protected form further damage and for the modern disturbances and dumping to be removed so that the site could be recorded in further detail before detailed archaeological excavation work may commence.

Small evaluation trenches or trial pits are not recommended at this site. It is clear it is a high status necropolis and small trenches would only confuse the picture further, as the site already has several robber trenches and the architectural fragments and surface finds have been mixed from several tombs.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Open area stratigraphic excavation and attendant single context recording is the recommended excavation strategy.

professional

Archaeological

excavation

and

recording

by

a

team

of

archaeologists

Following archaeological excavation the site could be restored and opened to tourists as an example of high status Roman tombs.

In order to manage the site in the long term a caretaker / guard could be appointed to monitor the site for illicit excavation, to clear rubbish and monitor the condition and safety of the tombs for public access.

The Department of Antiquities has known about this important necropolis since 1982 – over 25 years. It is being actively robbed and destroyed and requires IMMEDIATE protection.

OBJECTIVES OF THE FIELD SURVEY

The objectives of the JHS are to identify and record archaeological sites outside the Roman city walls. The hinterland of Jarash has been subjected to very little field survey or archaeological investigation. No city operates in isolation and its hinterland provided the resources to support the existence of the settlement. The area outside the

city walls was also the place where the cemeteries or ‘cities of the dead’ were located. Due to the extensive development now taking place the main objective of the JHS is

to provide a baseline survey identifying and locating as many of the archaeological

sites as possible before they are destroyed by development.

As the focus of extensive development is to the west of the Roman city, the first 2005 season of the JHS focussed its efforts there. The 2005 season, which lasted for two weeks, identified 217 archaeological sites within a 2km x 400m area. These sites include 67 rock cut tombs and 17 rock cut graves, 5 mausolea, 26 sarcophagi, 8 inscriptions and at least 31 quarry sites. Several artefact scatters were also located including an area of kiln wasters indicating Late Byzantine and Umayyad pottery production.

The 2008 survey area concentrated its efforts on the east of the city on the few surviving pockets of undeveloped land amongst the houses. Based on the 2005 survey results and rapid speed of development the project determined that this was the most important area to concentrate on, before any remaining evidence disappeared. Rapid walkover field assessment was also undertaken along the Wadi Deir (N Wadi Jarash) between Jarash and Birketein to the north of the city, and the northern part of the southern Wadi Jarash was also subjected to detailed survey. Development is starting to encroach upon both of these areas and is likely to speed up in the next few years.

A total of 402 sites were identified by the 2008 survey within the 1.9 sq km area

surveyed. These include the frequent rock cut tombs and quarries one would expect

in the immediate environs of the city and architectural and artefact scatters indicating

settlement or religious activity outside the city walls, as well as water management

and mills (see table and discussion below).

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

The survey is principally a baseline survey designed to identify and locate archaeological sites so that the hinterland of Jarash can be better understood and so that sites can be protected from destruction by future development. The objective of the 2008 season was to survey the last surviving pockets of undeveloped ground in the immediate vicinity of the city walls before moving further out from the city into the

hinterland with the overall objective of covering a 10 sq km area centred on the city.

A second objective of the survey is to identify and make recommendations as to what

future work and management systems should be implemented to preserve the archaeological sites.

METHODS OF FIELD SURVEY

The field survey was carried out by archaeologists walking intensively over the landscape looking for archaeological sites of any period. When a site was located, its position was marked by handheld GPS, colour digital photographs were taken and the site was recorded by written description, measurements and sketches on a specifically designed field recording form. If artefacts were present, these were collected to provide dating evidence. The pottery will be examined by Dr Ina Kehrberg during January 2009.

The field recording form is based on the JADIS record form and includes a section to identify and assess the level of threat to the archaeological sites. Due to extensive ongoing development almost every site has a high risk of being destroyed.

It was not possible to investigate the entire area as some parts have been entirely

developed and others are within enclosed gardens and private ground. The survey concentrated on the open ground consisting of olive groves, fields, waste ground and vacant plots as well as investigating all construction sites. Every opportunity to investigate private gardens was taken where available and a number of sites were recorded within gardens.

The Wadi Deir (N Wadi Jarash) was subjected a rapid walk-over assessment which located a number of major sites. Further more detailed survey work is required here.

MAPPING

In 2005 the JHS team were kindly supplied with a copy of the Jarash Development

Plan by the Governor of Jarash. The plan of proposed development on the west side of the city formed the base map for the survey area and has allowed the impact of development on the archaeological resource to be identified and quantified.

In 2008 the survey team used enlarged Google Earth satellite aerial photographs as field survey base maps. The Google images proved to be excellent base maps as they showed all built up areas and land boundaries and allowed areas developed between 2003 and 2008 to be identified.

At the commencement of the project it was necessary to produce a suitable scale map

of the survey area. The team had intended to use the 1977 1:50,000 UTM Sector 36

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

map as the primary map for the project coupled with rectified aerial photographs (APs) to produce a base map for the survey area. However, when checking the co- ordinates of fixed points on the ground with the GPS to assist with the rectification of APs it became apparent that the GPS co-ordinates derived from satellites did not agree with the UTM co-ordinates derived from the map. Further research determined that the UTM map is inaccurate and that the co-ordinates taken from the map may be up to 200m away from the co-ordinates obtained from the GPS. This is a known problem encountered by other survey teams (for example, Mortensen 1993; Flanagan & McCreery 1995). It should be noted that the error on the UTM map is variable, both on this particular map sheet and across Jordan. Therefore, there is no formula that can be applied to the GPS-derived co-ordinates to calculate the corresponding UTM map co-ordinates.

The survey team used hand-held GPS (Garmin 60CSx, Garmin 60C and a Garmin CS76) to locate the sites in the field. The GPS plots were cross checked by the field surveyors against the annotated field maps to ensure that all sites are correctly located.

All co-ordinates given in this report are derived from GPS readings, using the WGS 84 co-ordinate system, and are the true UTM co-ordinates for the archaeological sites identified. The accuracy of the GPS reading is usually within +/-5m, but occasionally the accuracy was +/- 6m or 7m of the site. The level of accuracy is recorded in the GPS field log.

It is important to note that the sites recorded by the survey should be located either from the attached map only or by GPS. If one tries to locate the sites by co-ordinates using the UTM Sector 36 S 1:50,000 map one will not find the sites as the UTM map is inaccurate by up to 200m.

All levels are related to Aqaba sea level datum. However, because there are no known spot height locations in the area of the Roman city or Jarash as a whole, it was not possible to calibrate the GPS each day with atmospheric pressure. Therefore, the elevation recorded for each site is not precisely accurate, but a rough guide only. The field surveyors noted discrepancies in the elevation readings at a number of sites and the elevations given should not be considered reliable.

The maps of the survey area that accompany this report has been produced from the Jarash City Development Map combined with the 1978 1:2500 map sheet 2833A and 2834A, rectified APs and GPS satellite derived co-ordinates and imagery.

TOPOGRAPHY AND GEOLOGY

The geology of the area is limestone bedrock with frequent outcrops, many of which have been quarried to some degree. There is considerable variation with the bedrock ranging from quite fine grained limestone of good building stone quality to softer limestone with inclusions, which is more prone to solution holes, filled with rendzina or terra rossa soil and small concreted stones. There are also areas of very soft and crumbly yellowish white marl, particularly to the NE of the ancient city in Al Howaz.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

The soil is terra rossa or rendzina and is deep red brown in colour with high clay content and good water retention properties. In some places a considerable depth of soil, up to 2m, was exposed. It is clear that there has been considerable slope wash or colluvial build up on the wadi and hill terraces, and alluvial deposition combined with slope washed soils in the wadis, particularly the Wadi Deir to the north of the city.

The hillsides have been terraced for agriculture in several places but due to the urban environment and ongoing development of the area for housing, the majority of the hill terrace walls have been destroyed. The hill terrace walls are generally about 0.80m wide and constructed of two facing courses of larger boulders filled with small stone rubble, which probably represents field clearance. The cultivation terrace walls in the southern Wadi Jarash are still largely intact and several of them were recorded by the project. It is of note that white glazed earthenware of 19 th – early 20 th century date was recovered from the soil profile underlying one of the terrace walls suggesting that the walls we see today are relatively modern in date. However, it is likely that the hill terrace cultivation walls have been rebuilt on numerous occasions and terrace walls similar to those we see today existed in the Classical period.

It was noted that the wadi terraces in the south Wadi Jarash and the north Wadi Deir were often more of a pale grey brown colour and tended to contain more pottery sherds, suggesting a longer history of intensive cultivation including manuring and ploughing in of stubble. While the grey brown soils contained more pottery sherds indicative of settlement activity, the rendzina soils were not devoid of artefacts but it was observed where deep profiles were exposed, pot sherds might only be present in the uppermost metre of soil deposits. It was also noted that rendzina soil has been imported into gardens and fields around the city, presumably because of its clay and water retention properties, and a rendzina quarry was noted on the road from Jarash to Mafraq.

JARASH 2008 - GEOLOGICAL NOTES

By Don Boyer BSc (Hons), CPGeo, Fellow Aus. Inst. Mining & Metallurgy

The Roman city of Jarash straddles the Wadi Jarash, a south draining Wadi that is incised into a flat lying sequence of limestone and related rocks of Cretaceous age. This sequence extends into the surrounding hinterland for some distance. The sequence typically comprises alternating layers of harder limestone and softer units, each less than 10 metres thick. The harder units are well exposed, locally exhibiting the sculptured pavements and karst scenery so typical of Cretaceous limestone terrains. Caves have created locally as a result of natural weathering processes in areas where a soft, friable limestone layer exists beneath harder ‘cap’ horizons.

Distinctive Rendzina soils (of ? Holocene age) are developed on terraces and any flat lying areas on the limestone pavements, with thicker development on flatter areas adjacent to the Wadi. These soils comprise deep red brown clay soil and limestone nodules and fragments. The nodules have been observed to have a largely concretionary origin. Given the absence of iron in the local geological environment, the source of the iron is enigmatic to the author.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

The local geological setting has clearly had an important impact on the development of the Jarash area since pre-Roman times (and continues to do so today), in a number of ways.

Topography

The flat lying limestone sequence, coupled with the variable hardness of the layers, weathers into the distinctive hilly landscape dominated by many small terraces that we see today in the undeveloped areas adjacent to the modern town. Over time these natural terraces have been artificially expanded to create larger terraces better suited to agriculture, especially the development of orchards.

to agriculture, especially the development of orchards. Plate 6: View looking east from UTM 36 coordinates

Plate 6: View looking east from UTM 36 coordinates 771223E, 3574802N on west side of survey area showing olive groves on Rendzina soils developed on natural terraces (enhanced by low walling) and wadi bottom. Note caves on upper terraces.

Within the modern town additional terracing for housing development has been created by reusing terraced orchard areas and by ‘benching’ into hillsides using heavy earth moving equipment. This benching results in the creation of significant amounts of spoil being deposited on terraced areas down slope, covering pre-existing terraces (and any archaeology they may contain). The creation of terraces limits the effect of down slope ‘soil creep’, potentially resulting in soils (and any contained archaeology) remaining more or less in situ where not modified by human activity.

Resources

Limestone is a particularly useful resource, and the large number of quarries identified in the Jarash hinterland is testament to the use of harder limestone units as a source of building blocks and related material in historic times.

The extent of quarrying in a given location is impacted by the thickness of the favoured unit (typically fine-grained and/or porcelanous), which may be only a few metres in thickness, and ease of access. Much quarrying seems to have been

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

opportunistic and small scale, with evidence of individual block removal in small, easily accessible areas.

individual block removal in small, easily accessible areas. Plate 7: View (looking SW) of well exposed

Plate 7: View (looking SW) of well exposed block quarry Site 034

Quarrying of very large blocks and columns would be limited to the availability of unusually thick units, and a column quarry was visited in one such location in the hills above the village of Suf, approximately 5km north of Jarash (UTM coordinates 35.8902099.275E / 32.3225191.453N).

Jarash (UTM coordinates 35.8902099.275E / 32.3225191.453N). Plate 8: Column Quarry – Suf area, 5km north of

Plate 8: Column Quarry – Suf area, 5km north of Jarash

There is abundant evidence of block quarrying well beyond the limits of the study area, perhaps reflecting the high demand created by the establishment of Roman Jarash.

The water resources generated by water flowing within Wadi Jarash and subordinate wadi’s draining into it, together with springs developed in the adjacent wadi banks and hillsides, would have been a significant resource in historical times. They remain so today, although flow rates appear to have been drastically reduced by over usage,

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

water diversion and possibly climate change over the past 2000 years. (Some commentators such as Hirschfeld (2004) and others have determined that there was higher rainfall in the 1 st century BC and in the mid 4 th century AD.)

Cultural

The presence of natural caves provides the opportunity for human adaptation and use. The existence of alternating hard and soft limestone layers also provides the opportunity for creating man-made tombs and other burial places, using the harder limestone as a natural self-supporting cap or roof and the immediately softer unit (often a breccia contain fragments of limestone and flint) amenable to excavation into any desired shape. The harder limestone cap horizon is also amenable to the carving of facades.

cap horizon is also amenable to the carving of facades. Plate 9: Site 202 - Underground

Plate 9: Site 202 - Underground view of rock cut tomb showing niches cut into soft brecciated limestone immediately below hard caprock horizon. Looking North

Agriculture

The combined existence of natural terracing and rich Rendzina soil presumably focused farming activities in the immediate Jarash area and beyond in historic times and continues to do so today. While areas of thicker soil profiles predictably support more intensive agriculture, it has been observed that even a small patch of Rendzina soil of a few square metres extent developed in a solution hollow within an exposed limestone pavement can support a single olive tree.

Comments

Care needs to be exercised in distinguishing natural solution features in limestone from manmade features, particularly in quarried areas.

The total dominance of limestone and to a lesser extent flint in the Jarash hinterland and surrounding areas means that the occurrence of non-limestone rocks such as basalt, ultramafic rocks and granite in the archaeological record stand out as being sourced from outside the area (and in the case of ultramafic

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

and granite types, from outside of Jordan). Occurrences of basalt querns have been noted in the survey, presumably sourced from northern Jordan, and the author has also noted occasional examples of distinct rounded (and possibly used as small hand querns) stones of magnetic, medium to course grained olivine-bearing ultramafic rock, the source of which is uncertain.

Rendzina soils exist at surface and have also been observed to infill shallow solution holes and caves up to several metres beneath the present natural surface. They represent a potentially useful and visible time marker separating ?pre-human and post-human occupation, especially on sites where the soil profile has been disturbed by modern earthmoving and dumping.

has been disturbed by modern earthmoving and dumping. Plate 1: View of Rendzina soil profile overlain

Plate 1: View of Rendzina soil profile overlain by modern dumped material

During the study it was noted at several locations that a number of tombs have been excavated along a given horizon with particularly favourable rock conditions. More detailed surveying and geological understanding could potentially result in the capacity to predict the location of unexposed tomb sites in spoil covered areas. Where appropriate, ground penetrating radar may also assist in the location of shallow tombs with voids within c.3m of surface.

THE DATABASE

In 2005, the JHS had intended to use the JADIS database for recording the sites but unfortunately, this was not possible. The JADIS database was created in the early 1990’s as an overall sites and monuments record for Jordan, with the intention that all projects working in Jordan would supply their site data in a standard format for entry into the database. However, due to technical difficulties and the ever-evolving nature of computer databases, JADIS could not read or process data produced by more recent software and versions of Access or other databases that have superseded that used for JADIS.

It was therefore necessary for the JHS to create its own database and this work was

undertaken by David Connolly.

The JHS database is an Access database and was

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

designed using all the JADIS codes for type site, site location etc. However, since 2005, a new overall sites and monuments record for Jordan, MEGA, is currently under development. After discussions with Catreena Hamarneh of the Department of Antiquities and MEGA project, it was concluded that the JHS dataset is compatible with data migration into the MEGA framework.

A GIS system compatible with QGIS was requested by the Dept of Antiquities. Five

layers were created: Layer 1 is a raster map of the Jarash area, extending to 4km around the city; Layer 2 is a polygon extent of the 2005 JHS survey area; Layer 3 is a polygon extent of the 2008 JHS survey area; Layer 4 is point data on all surveyed sites from the 2005 and 2008 JHS survey areas; Layer 5 are polygons of surveyed

scatters. Metadata consists of site number, site type and UTM co-ordinates. All of this

is held in the QGIS folder on the disk accompanying this report.

The JHS Database accompanies this brief text report on disk. The disk contains all site records; GPS readings (site co-ordinates); all colour digital photographs and illustrations; the finds list; QGIS (GIS information for all sites in QGIS format) and the Preliminary Report on the Pottery and Small Finds from JHS 2005 by Ina Kehrberg.

THE SURVEY AREAS

EAST OF THE CITY

See Figures 3 and 4

The survey area to the east of the city was extensively built up and is best described as urban. This made it difficult to identify the underlying landscape because it has been much altered. The northern part of the area consisted of hill terraces running around the Tell Mustashfa (or Tell Jarash or Al Howaz) plateau on its N, W and S slopes and terraces rising up the slope of the higher hill to the E. The southern part of the area consisted of terraces on the NW, W and S slopes of a separate plateau (with a valley between it and Tell Mustashfa), which dropped steeply down to the S to the wadi bottom used by the new Irbid road.

Any areas of open ground that could be accessed by the surveyors were investigated, including private gardens. The survey maps indicate land use and areas that could be surveyed. In general, only rock cut tombs and quarries were located in this area but at a much lower density than in the 2005 survey area on the west side of the city. This difference in site frequency is a result of modern development and urban expansion.

SOUTH WADI JARASH

See Figure 4

Only the northernmost part of the southern Wadi Jarash was surveyed. Most of this area is under cultivation, although modern buildings and the dumping of construction waste are encroaching upon it. The wadi is a fairly narrow flat bed with terraces rising steeply on the east and west sides. Only narrow fields were present at the

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

bottom of the slope with larger fields further up slope, particularly on the west side.

A very slight flow of water enters the wadi at its north end under the modern road

bridge, falling over a ten metre high limestone edge to the wadi bottom. The W side

of the edge had clearly been scoured by the force of what must have been a stronger

flow of water in the past. A natural spring was also observed issuing from the base of the limestone edge on the W side of the wadi near here.

WADI DEIR

See Figures 2 and 5

The survey area to the north of the city was the area known as Wadi Deir (Deir meaning ‘monastery’ in Arabic). This runs from north to south and is divided along the same axis by the Roman road (under the modern road), which ran from the Jarash City Walls to Birketein (which translates as ‘two pools’). The general topography of the Wadi Deir consists of a flat alluvial plain which is narrow at either end and broadens out in the middle. The east and west sides consist of long rocky limestone

outcrops which rise fairly steeply in places, effectively enclosing the wadi valley. The wadi river ran from north to south on the east side of the Wadi, named by the Greeks

as Chrysorhoas (golden river), which is still in evidence as a dried up river bed.

The alluvial plain is mostly under cultivation, with field and orchard plots running E-

W

across it. There is evidence for controlled land division in the past as on both sides

of

the road a number of the fields are very evenly spaced, being approximately fifteen

metres wide. It is felt that these land parcels may have been created during the late Ottoman period, created by or for the Circassians when they moved to Jarash from

south-eastern Russia to escape persecution in the late 19 th century (Shami 1992).

Because of the close proximity to modern Jerash and the need for more water for domestic purposes due to the rising population, water has now been diverted away from Wadi Deir and the springs at Birketein have apparently dried up. This has affected the agricultural potential of the Wadi and the fields now have very little irrigation. Add to this the demand for more housing when land closest to Jerash can command high prices, and the result has been the gradual encroachment of construction into the Wadi fields.

NW OF THE CITY

See Figure 5

The survey area NW of the city walls was a continuation of the N end of the 2005 survey W of the city walls, and used the Suf road as its N boundary. This area was a

limestone hill with terrace edges. Although quite developed, building in this area is a recent phenomenon, so there were still many open areas and orchards that could be surveyed. The kinds of sites that survived were typical of the W of the city, mostly comprising tombs and quarries, with sarcophagi, architectural fragments, occasional cisterns, traditional houses and some dense artefact scatters. However, development

in this area is increasing and many of these sites may soon be lost.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

OVERVIEW OF SITE TYPES

QUARRIES

A total number of 45 quarry sites were recorded in the 2008 survey season. Most of

these sites were simple cut edges, dispersed along the natural limestone terrace outcrops, with very few (Sites 250, 301, 304, 305, 306 and 326) providing evidence of step quarrying, block cutting or block sizes. Of these 2008 sites, quarry Site 326 was the most extensive and best preserved, the 17m long, 9m wide 2m high area contained all of the types of evidence mentioned above. Therefore it is recommended that Site 326 should be preserved as the best example of this industry east of the Roman city.

the best example of this industry east of the Roman city. Plate 11: Quarry Site 326

Plate 11: Quarry Site 326

It is clear that although quarries were noted throughout the survey area, they were less

frequent and less extensive than those noted on the west side of the ancient city in the 2005 survey season. This was partly because of the intensity of urban development east of the city, but it was also noted that in general the limestone was of poorer quality than in the west and therefore less amenable for use as building stone. However, some of the softer limestone units were essentially marl, which would have

been extremely useful for making mortar and plaster. Indeed, at the N end of the survey area to the east and south of the old Irbid road, the limestone was so soft that it

is still recognised as a place to quarry marl and this area is called ‘Al Howaz’, which

appears to translate as ‘lime marl’.

ROCK CUT TOMBS (INCLUDING HYPOGAEA)

64 rock cut tombs were located by the survey including two hypogaea and one arcosolium, About 50% of these tombs require evaluation to confirm that they are indeed tombs.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Rock-cut tombs

Many rock cut tombs were identified as such because they were inaccessible, and therefore the interior design could not be identified. Many were also identified as probable or possible rock cut tombs because the top of a wide right-angled recess was visible in the bedrock, or because there was a wide and high vertical rock cut face, sometimes with a lip at the base. Such features tended to be associated with confirmed tombs, but of course the sites need evaluation to confirm that there is a tomb present.

n eed evaluation to confirm that there is a tomb present. Plate 12: Tomb 236, with

Plate 12: Tomb 236, with robbers’ spoil blocking intact door

Many of the 61 rock cut tombs identified by the 2008 survey were in poor condition, especially those E of the city. This reflects the more intensive urban conditions E of the city. Many were used as rubbish dumps, many had been truncated by road and building construction and many had been robbed both in antiquity and recently. Examples of recent tomb robbing are at the rock cut shaft tomb Sites 230 and 231, which are situated in the W-facing limestone edge on the E side of the old Irbid road. Here, tomb 230 had been entered first and a tunnel quarried had been quarried by the robbers to break through into the adjacent tomb 231. We were told that in tomb 230 there had been a ledge for the body, a skull and other bones, pottery and glass, all of which were broken and left there. In the robbers’ upcast outside the tombs, lots of bone, some bronze fragments, a bronze bracelet in two pieces with a twisted design and plain terminals, glass and pottery were observed and retrieved. It would be worth completely excavating these sites and sieving the robbers spoil to retrieve any remaining human bones and artefacts for analysis and the provision of dating evidence.

The largest tomb encountered during the 2008 survey was Site 486, a multi- chambered tomb cut into the N part of the limestone edge forming the W side of the Wadi Deir. The rock cut entrance was rebated externally to receive masonry for a built doorway. It was accessed by a rock-cut passage buried beneath a slope of soil and trash. Indeed, the tomb is in active use as a rubbish dump, including soiled baby nappies and all the internal surfaces are coated with black soot from fires for burning rubbish or perhaps inhabitation. The entrance is towards the S end of the E side of the 2.60m high central chamber, which is sub-rectangular, measuring 12.1m N-S by

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6.15m E-W, with approximately 11 chambers and recesses off it. Most of the side chambers are roughly square, often with the remains of masonry doorways, rather than elongated open niches for receiving sarcophagi and this is not typical of most tombs recorded by the survey.

this is not typical of most tombs recorded by the survey. Plate 13: Interior of Site

Plate 13: Interior of Site 486

It is clear that the tomb has been adapted for reuse, evidenced not only by the removal

of walls between chambers and masonry doorways to create larger spaces resulting in the need to build a limestone column in the central chamber to support the ceiling, although some of the ceiling has collapsed, but also by the presence of an olive mill stone 1.50m in diameter and 0.55m thick in the main chamber, close to the supporting column. It seems likely that the chambers were reused for storage associated with the olive press and wine installation and there are external features that are likely to be associated with this also. The clearest of these is a circular plaster-lined vat 0.80m in diameter and at least 1.60m deep, cut into the bedrock at the side of the passage down to the tomb. There is a channel leading to this and there are faint traces of an adjacent rectangular stone (?treading) tank also, although these are mostly obscured by soil cover and vegetation. The final use of the tomb appears to be that of habitation, evidenced by the soot-covered interior from fire smoke. This site should be cleared and fenced off for protection.

Hypogaea

Only two confirmed hypogaeae were identified - again the lack of survival is because of urban nature of E side of the town and in Wadi Deir because it was essentially the alluvial plan that was surveyed. Tombs had clearly been cut in the limestone scarps that flank the plain, but most of these were outside the 2008 survey area.

During the 2008 survey, the NW Necropolis site was revisited, and Site 052, which had been recorded as a probable tomb because of local information and a façade with

a lip at its base, had now been broken into and is a confirmed hypogaeum. See the Necropolis section below.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Those that survived the best tended to be ones that had been reused for habitation or storage. One (Site 202) in the NW survey area had a metal door put into the original doorway and the original stone door frame and steps down to the entrance had been repointed with concrete. Although nothing remained in the niches, a rubble wall had been built at one side of the tomb and the opposite side had suffered from roof collapse and some modern quarrying, a complete decorated sarcophagus and lid remained in situ to the right of the doorway. The lid had been wedged open so that the contents could be rifled through, but more may remain.

the contents could be rifled through, but more may remain. Plate 14: Hypogaeum Site 294, show

Plate 14: Hypogaeum Site 294, showing grave niche and relief panel

The most exciting hypogaeum (Site 299) had also survived not only because it had been used for habitation and storage, but also because four modern reinforced concrete pillars had been inserted to support the ceiling to take the weight of the house built above. This site not only comprised a large hypogaeum – site 299.3 - with (empty) sarcophagus niches, small niches cut into the sides for lamps and the remains of the doorway reused in the masonry, but also had a rock cut grave in an arched recess (Site 299.1) flanking the approach to the tomb and a carved relief panel (Site 299.2) above the entrance. Although the panel was very weathered, the outlines of three, perhaps four human figures in stylised poses can still be made out. Presumably these figures represent the family that were buried in the tomb. No other carved panels were found during the survey and the owner should be approached to arrange an agreement that the panel will not be damaged.

Arcosolium

One arcosolium tomb was recorded in the 2008 survey, to the E of the city, Site 293. This was a rectangular rock cut chamber with a damaged rock cut grave in an arched niche to the rear and the scant remains of another to one side. The tomb was partly full of soil and building rubble and has managed to survive (so far) at the edge of a modern scarp cut through the limestone, below a bulldozed area and above an olive grove on the S side of Tell Mustashfa. The owner of the land asked us to leave the site, but as the only one of its type, in should be fenced off and protected from further development.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

MAUSOLEA

Only one mausoleum was located for certain, which was at the southwest end of the Wadi Deir at the foot of the limestone outcrops on the hillslope. The mausoleum Site 469 was excavated by Aida Naghawy and Abd al Majeed Mujalli in c 1982 (pers comm). The front (ENE face) of the mausoleum no longer exists, having been truncated by house construction. What remains is three sides of a room or cella, with the rear cut into the slope of the hillside behind. Within this are four square pillars, which had voussoired arches based on springers spanning the gaps between them. The rear one of these survives. There are the scant remains of a springer on the NNW face of the NW pillar, indicating that there may have been a barrel vault between the pillars and the wall of the cella. Much lime plaster survives on the pillars and some on the internal wall faces, indicating that the whole interior was plastered and, presumably, painted. In one corner of the cella wall, traces of a moulded plaster column survived indicating plaster trompe d’oeils and decorative features. A large undecorated sarcophagus has been placed on its end near the SSE wall and the horned lid, which has been broken in two, lies below the surviving arch. The sarcophagus has been rebated to take the lid and the lead plugs survive around the rim as do the receiving holes around the edge of the lid.

rim as do the receiving holes around the edge of the lid. Plate 15: Mausoleum site

Plate 15: Mausoleum site 469

This site should be cleared and restored and fenced off to protect it from encroaching development.

Just to the N of Site 469, the remains of a rectilinear structure (Site 473), similar in build to the cella wall of the mausoleum, was visible. This should be evaluated because it is possible that this is the remnants of another mausoleum.

The Palmyrene type mausoleum (Site 43) in the NW Necropolis near the Suf road was revisited and further damage was noted. See the Update on the 2005 Survey section above.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

SARCOPHAGI

15 sarcophagi (including fragments and lids) were found during the survey. A few of these were still inside the tombs (e.g. see Hypogaeum Site 202 above) or despite having been moved were still in immediate association with the burial site (e.g. see Mausoleum Site 469 above). Some had been kept as garden ornaments, for example a plain, roughly chiselled child’s sarcophagus and plain lid, Site 209, on a garden terrace. (Internally the sarcophagus was only 0.80m long, 0.25m wide and 0.19m deep.) However, most had been cleared, often broken, and dumped elsewhere, completely divorcing them from their context, clearly indicating the lack of understanding and appreciation of Cultural Heritage in the local area.

and appreciation of Cultu ral Heritage in the local area. Plate 16: Sarcophagus Site 338 The

Plate 16: Sarcophagus Site 338

The sarcophagi varied in size and all were made of limestone. As in 2005, in many cases only two or three faces were finely dressed and the other face left rough, indicating that these sarcophagi were not to be viewed on all sides and would have been placed against a wall.

Some sarcophagi were plain, but others were carved. The quality of decoration varied. A number of symbols were carved in relief on the sarcophagi sides. These are:

Wreath, various details, some with flowing ‘ribbons', while others were almost just plain circles, some with leaf details and some plain

A crescent with three knobs was the most common design, probably a stylised axe (Fisher 1938, 562)

Circular rosette with petals

The sarcophagi lids were either plain or had projecting horns at the corners. All had straight edges and pointed tops.

ROCK-CUT GRAVES

Only four rock-cut graves were found for certain (Sites 286, 364.1 and 364.2), two more possible such graves (Sites 356 and 364.3) and the rock-cut grave in a niche, Site 299.1, flanking hypogaeum Site 299.3 (see Hypogaea section above), which was more of an external arcosolium than a plain rock-cut grave. Site 286 was a flanking

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

pair of graves, and Sites 364.1, 364.2 and 364.3 also lay together. Grave Site 286 also lies in close association with rock cut tombs (Sites 287, 288, 290 and 291). The graves were rebated at the top in order to receive a lid. Presumably this type of burial was of lower status than burials in tombs or sarcophagi.

was of lower status than buria ls in tombs or sarcophagi. Plate 17: Rock-cut grave s

Plate 17: Rock-cut graves Site 286 to left of tomb entrance Site 287

The small number of this type of grave found in 2008 probably reflects the urban nature of the east side of the city, rather than a real distribution pattern. The rarity of these sites means that Sites 364.1 and 364.2, and especially Site 286, because of the graves’ association with tombs, should be preserved. The graves and the tombs here should be preserved as a group and it should be noted that there is a high risk of development here that could destroy them in the next year or so.

ROMAN MILESTONES

Four milestones and two milestone bases were found in an orchard to the east of the modern road to and some 50m S of Birketein (and, roughly, one Roman mile N of the North Gate of Gerasa). Two lay on either side of a modern concrete water channel. That of Septimius Severus (422) lay just east and was wedged against the channel with most of the text visible. The second (424) was on the west side, was further from the channel and under a tree. It was dirty and the text - though visible - was difficult to decipher and the inscription was on both sides of the column. The third milestone (423) was totally buried in the orchard c. 30m to the SW and close to the fence by the road. Ploughing had damaged the upper surface of 423. Traces of weathered inscription were visible as it was dug out. The fourth, 427, lay next to the farm building, beside two milestone base blocks (426).

Apart from milestone Site 423, they have all been recorded, transliterated and discussed by Sandrine Agusta-Boularot, Adnan Mujalli and Jacques Seigne in a publication already (Agusta-Boularot et al, 1998). The third milestone, Site 423, would not have been noted by the French team because it was completely buried. It should be noted that all of the published pieces had been moved from where they

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

were located in the published photographs. Because of this, milestones 422, 423 and 424 were moved by Abd Al-Majeed Mujalli to his DoA offices within Roman Jarash for safekeeping. He plans to retrieve the remaining milestone fragment, 427, and the two bases soon. It is hoped that the inscription on milestone 423 will be recorded and transliterated in the future.

423 will be recorded and transliterated in the future. Plate 18: Excavation of milestone 423 I

Plate 18: Excavation of milestone 423

INSCRIPTIONS

Apart from those on the milestones (see Milestone section above), four inscriptions were located by the survey. In Wadi Deir at Site 462 two Greek inscriptions and architectural fragments were located just to the north of the new Medical Centre and it was clear that they had been disturbed by the new development and dumped outside its precinct. No archaeological work was undertaken during the construction of the new Medical Centre despite its close proximity to the North Gate of the ancient Jarash. These two inscriptions and the architectural fragments have been collected by Abd al Majeed Mujalli and are now safely at the Department of Antiquities office inside Jarash. Abd al Mujeed intends to search through the rubble and spoil heaps from the construction of the medical centre to look for more inscriptions and architectural fragments. It is of interest that Fisher noted that ‘a short distance north of the North Gate is a temple sacred to Nemesis. Only foundations and eight Corinthian columns of the portico, now fallen…’ (Fisher 1938, 25). There is no mention of the evidence for the Nemesis dedication, so we cannot be certain that he did not mistake the Octagonal Church for a temple, but there is the possibility that the Medical Centre has been built on this temple site. If the DoA had undertaken archaeological monitoring of the site when the centre was built, this information would not have been lost.

A third Greek inscription was noted reused within the fabric of the City wall (Site 245) and an Abbasid inscription was located in a small orchard to the NW of the city (Site 271). It is hoped that the latter will be retrieved.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season Plate 19: Inscription from Site 462 (the other is on report

Plate 19: Inscription from Site 462 (the other is on report cover)

Plate 20: Inscriptions 245 and 271

other is on report cover) Plate 20: Inscriptions 245 and 271 A RCHITECTURAL FRAGMENTS Architectural fragments

ARCHITECTURAL FRAGMENTS

Architectural fragments were located throughout the survey area and squared Roman masonry had been reused in many structures particularly in field terrace walls in both Wadi Deir and in South Wadi Jarash, which probably date from when the Circassians settled in Jarash in the late 19 th -century, or later.

A total number of 98 architectural fragments were recorded. The most numerous types of fragments were limestone pieces from door frames, usually jambs, lintels and

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

thresholds, but there were also a few pieces of a moulded architrave from around a doorway (e.g. Sites 333.2 and 456b). The second most numerous type of fragments were column drums, usually limestone, but occasionally red granite. In two areas in particular there was a concentration of high quality column drums (along with other architectural fragments), in Wadi Deir close to the Octagonal Church and in the wadi channel below it, and Sites 341, 389 and 390, which all appear to derive from a classical building that was used as a source of gravestones for use in the old Circassian cemetery (Site 390) and was destroyed when the Jarash Ladies’ Institute was constructed (see Monumental Structures section below). There were 16 columns from around the cemetery area, including one limestone twisted flute column and one red granite column. There were 5 red granite column drums and 5 limestone ones (Sites 445, 448, 450a-d, 456a, 457, 459) that look as if they came from the Octagonal Church, which should be retrieved and placed back within the confines of the excavated area, along with the other associated pieces of monumental masonry (Sites 451, 454, 456a, 458, 460, .461a-b).

masonry (Sites 451, 454, 456a, 458, 460, .461a-b). Plate 21: bulldozed architecture si te 389, with

Plate 21: bulldozed architecture site 389, with detail of one of columns

Other fragments of interest included Site 329, which had a sculpted face with a raised circular rosette with a 6-pointed sharp petal design, flanked by vertical stripes and the remains of a flying bird with a pomegranate at its beak.

remains of a flying bird with a pomegranate at its beak. Plate 22: Architectural Fragment Site

Plate 22: Architectural Fragment Site 329

ARTEFACT SCATTERS

In the mainly built-up area east of the

City Wall ceramic, artefact and flint collections were carried out around associated

A total of 79 artefact scatters were recorded.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

sites, particularly in the environs of tombs. Area collections were also carried out on the few remaining areas of open ground, such as orchards and ploughed patches of land. However, most of the scatters were very low density, essentially ‘background noise’. In this area, the only scatter of note was within the old Circassian graveyard (Site 390), close to the Roman city wall. Along with a dump of monumental masonry, there was an unusually high concentration of tesserae including two made of glass and a large pottery assemblage was collected, which, taken in conjunction with the associated architectural fragments, strongly suggests a building of some importance was located in the immediate vicinity (see Monumental Structure section below).

In the southern Wadi Jarash, a higher concentration of ceramics was present in the terraced fields due to the more open nature of the landscape. However, it should be noted that this area would most probably be affected by slope wash and the introduction of soil for terracing purposes.

Wadi Deir (Wadi Jarash north) revealed three interesting areas of pick up to the east of the Jarash to Birketein road. The first of these areas (Site 449) represented a collection in the orchard directly to the east of the remains of the Octagonal Church. This assemblage contained an assortment of marble fragments, which have now been assessed by geologist, Don Boyer. There is a strong possibility that these fragments would have been used as flooring material (Opus Sectile) within the Octagonal Church itself. The second notable area (Site 444) lies to the north of the Octagonal Church. This artefact scatter had a remarkably rich ceramic assemblage considering the small field that it was collected from. This field lay adjacent to a large platform with a tomb underneath it (Site 447), which may represent the site of a farm, villa or monumental structure. A third area of interest was represented by ceramic and artefact collections potentially associated with the foundations of two structures (Sites

405 & 406), possibly Roman buildings, later re-built by the Circassians. Both

collections revealed similar ceramic and artefact assemblages, including tesserae and

Roman glass, although it should be noted that Site 406 has been used as a modern dump.

To the west of the Jarash to Birketein road two sites were identified as especially noteworthy. The first came from the west end of an orchard (sherd scatter Site 494) which contained a high concentration of tesserae. This may be associated with Site

495 nearby, comprising two large piles of stones, some dressed, and an area of

smaller rubble in the surrounding area. Abd al-Majeed Mujalli also confirmed that this was the site of an inscription, perhaps a temple, retrieved some time before by the Department of Antiquities. The second and most intriguing site was sherd and artefact scatter Site 523, lying mainly within the boundary of a small terraced orchard with recently built terrace walls. This site contained a variety of ceramic sherds of different types and periods, including many large Umayyad bowl sherds and one fragment of a Jarash bowl. Three kiln wasters were identified also. Thirty-three tesserae were also collected along with clay tiles, basalt rubbers, marble, glass and one fragment of mother of pearl, possibly an inlay.

The area to the north-west of the City Wall represented a continuation of the 2005 survey. Having returned first of all to assess the condition of the Necropolis (Sites 43 – 63) it was decided after seeing evidence of further tomb robbing that Site 44 should

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have a further pick up. The majority of the ceramics retrieved from the robbers’ upcast were of the same Late Roman/Early Byzantine storage jar type with a gypsum coating that had been collected in 2005. Another site of interest in the northwest area was a large orchard with a partially collapsed area of terrace wall (Site 204), which had many pottery sherds within it and in its collapse onto the lower terrace. The collection included one kiln tile with glaze on it. A further collection was undertaken on the lower level (Site 263) where four kiln wasters were found and an adjacent scatter (Site 254) also contained a substantial amount of pottery.

Few flints were found in the 2008 survey area as a whole and it was found that the flint and chert (lower silica content) was predominately debitage with a few cores and very few tools. This may indicate that much of the prehistoric landscape in the town has been masked and / or removed by Roman and later occupation and modern construction works.

WATER MANAGEMENT: CHANNELS, CISTERNS, BASINS, SPRINGS AND MILLS

Channels

The remains of a stone water channel constructed of individual U shaped blocks was located in the Wadi Deir to the north of the City. This site (Site 400), which comprised 23 blocks, was scattered over a large area with many of the blocks built into later agricultural terrace walls. It appears that some of them may have had a terracotta water pipe laid into the channel. Traces of bitumen and lead were also noted in some of the channel blocks, perhaps to hold the pipe in place. There are two different sizes of blocks and it is thought that this difference may reflect the supply of domestic water to the City and the supply of irrigation water for agricultural purposes in the wadi. In the limestone edges flanking the Wadi Deir, Sites 485 and 487 comprised traces of water channels cut into the bedrock, catching and controlling surface water shed from the slopes above.

and controlling surface water shed from the slopes above. Plate 23: elements of wat er channel

Plate 23: elements of water channel blocks Site 400

Cisterns, basins and springs

Eighteen cisterns, three rock-cut basins and one spring were located by the survey. Four of the cisterns were inaccessible, with a modern capping and need further investigation to assess how old they are. A few cisterns were simply rock-cut and had feeder channels leading into them (e.g. Sites 351 and 484). There was one bell-

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

shaped cistern, which was at least 3 metres deep (Site 352). Sites 204 and 274 were large rectangular plaster-lined tanks. For example, Site 274 was 6.00m long, at least 3.20m wide and at least 2.20m deep. It had a rock-cut inlet in which the remains of a lead pipe was visible.

inlet in which the remains of a lead pipe was visible. Plate 24: Plastered cistern 274,

Plate 24: Plastered cistern 274, with pipe inlet at rear

Two plaster-lined cisterns reused rock-cut tombs (Sites 212 and 251). Cistern Site 251, which reused a rock-cut tomb (Site 252), was located in the garden of a private house, and was excavated by Abd Al-Majeed Mujalli’s workmen. It consisted of a plaster lined subterranean chamber and had a superstructure constructed of dressed limestone blocks into which channels to feed into the cistern had been cut. There was also a plaster lined basin associated with it. An in situ ceramic water pipe, complete with lead filter was found leading in to the top of the cistern. Two complete grey clay square tiles and numerous ceramics were also found here, as was a Roman coin, although all these finds are part of the later backfilling of the cistern.

It is difficult to interpret the 3 rock-cut basins. Site 339 was 0.5m in diameter and only 0.2m deep, with a small channel leading into it, whereas Site 356 was 0.55m in diameter, 0.45m deep and had a small channel leading out of it. Basin Site 253 was larger, being 1.4m in diameter and 0.7m deep with a further shallow depression at its base. Such features have many possible functions, such as receptacles for liquids, or for grinding or processing foodstuffs and so on (cf Younker 1995, 685).

One spring (Site 349) was noted in the South Wadi Jarash, issuing from the base of the limestone scarp at the W side of the wadi, not far south of the presumed site of the Roman water gate. This has a derelict concrete channel leading from it into some ruined concrete water tanks. It is still in use as a source of irrigation water for the lower terraces and fields in the bottom of the wadi. The bluff from which this spring issues is significantly scoured, showing how strong the water flow used to be, presumably in rainy seasons (cf Fisher 1938, 14). The force of the water would have been massively increased by falling over the 10m high cliff to the N, which is mentioned by several writers as where the Roman water gate was located, now below the road across the wadi (Fisher 1938, 12-13; Browning 1982, 207-8; Khouri 1986,

53)

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Mills

Surface water that would naturally have run off into the wadi appears to have been controlled and collected, not only as a supply of drinking and irrigation water, but also to power water mills.

Two definite mills have been located in the south Wadi Jarash (Site 001 from 2005 and Site 505 from 2008). We were told of another between the two, but the survey did not reach this to confirm it. There was another probable mill / water management system (Site 393) near the foot of the waterfall close to the presumed location of the Roman water gate in the south Wadi Jarash and some masonry that may be the remains of two mills were located in the Wadi Deir (Sites 465 and 467).

Site 393 consists of two massive walls some 3m thick, 6m high and up to 6m long, built against the limestone edge on the E side of the wadi. The walls are battered back and terminate at their W (wadi) ends in a tower-like fashion. These walls (or piers) are set at an oblique angle to each other and are built of large, squared limestone blocks, well-set in a Roman-looking fashion, and include some reused Roman masonry. The massive N wall or pier has two vertical slots on each side of it, which may have held a wooden installation. It is clear that considerable volumes of water have poured over both structures, evidenced by thick limestone concretions. The S wall had been rebuilt on at least two occasions as well as buttressed, perhaps necessitated by the force of water flowing over it.

perhaps necessitated by the force of water flowing over it. Plate 25: Possible mill site 393

Plate 25: Possible mill site 393

There were two smaller walls, parallel to each other, of similarly built of squared Roman-looking blocks that appeared to be of the same primary phase as the massive wall piers. These were set at right angles to the N pier, running between and beyond the W end of pier. They are likely to be the two long sides of the same building. These walls have been rebuilt and adapted with Ottoman style coursed rubble walls, in order to create another building. A photograph from the late 1970s shows that one of these later walls had a large arch in it, which has now collapsed, as well as traces of other walls (Browning 1982, fig 136, 209). It also shows that the N wall pier stood

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

higher than it does today and that it may have been stepped on the surface – possibly a water channel. The site is now truncated and covered with dumped rubble from the construction of the new bridge, which hampers interpretation, but we think that it is a mill, perhaps Roman, that has been rebuilt in the Ottoman period. We also observed a rock-cut water channel running along the E side of the wadi just to the north of the bridge, which appears to be at the right level for diverting water to power a mill at the location of Site 393.

Mill Site 393 is downstream from Site 403, located in a 15m wide part of the wadi, confined by steep banks and limestone outcrops on either side. The constituent parts of the site are 505.1 - the mill aqueduct with penstock tower and internal chute (see McQuitty 1995), 505.2 - probable remains of mill housing, 1.8m to the S of the end of the aqueduct, and 505.3 - a well-built wall some 5m to the E of the end of the aqueduct, which may form one side of the mill lade, or perhaps housing. Much of the wadi side of the mill is obscured by trees and thick scrub, obscuring the possible housing, lade and the water outlet at the base of the tower. We were told that there used to be a water channel leading along the W side of the wadi to the aqueduct, but that this has since been taken away. Certainly, there has been recent cutting and re- terracing along the line of the suitable contour for this. The differing styles of construction of the constituent parts, from squared Roman-style blocks to coursed Ottoman style rubble, indicate a multi-phase use of the mill site.

style rubble, indicate a multi-phase use of the mill site. Plate 26: Mill site 505 Mill

Plate 26: Mill site 505

Mill sites are very difficult to date, and ones that have a Roman appearance have been shown to be 19 th -century (McQuitty 1995, 746). There is evidence for such mills to have been built and used anywhere between the Classical Ottoman periods (McQuitty 1995, 746-749; Greene 1995, 760-761), and for the restoration of derelict mills in the Late Ottoman period (Rogan 1995). All of these scholars emphasise the need to excavate mill sites in order to understand their development and date. The sites recorded by the 2008 survey are prime candidates for excavation, especially with the rapid pace of development and extensive dumping at Jarash, which could cause them to be destroyed in the near future.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Water Management

Although the evidence for water collection, supply and management at Jarash has been much truncated by modern development, enough has been discovered so far to indicate that it is typical of what one could expect from studies of other areas in Jordan (e.g Abujaber 1995; Abudanh 2007). There appears to be three levels to the system at Jarash. The first is at a municipal level, where the water from perennial springs and rivers is collected and large rectangular reservoirs are built, such as the one located some 1.17m NW of the city walls at the head of the wadi on the W side of Zhara al Siraw (observed by David Kennedy, Don Boyer and David Connolly while flying over it) and the even larger one at Birketein. From these, at the second level, water was led through channels to the centres of population. Smaller channels appear to capture surface water, or divert water from the perennial supplies to be used for irrigation purposes or powering mills. At the third level, water is used at a domestic scale, with supplies being diverted or collected in cisterns. These different levels of water management are well-suited to the climate and still used today (Abujaher 1995,

741-744).

MONUMENTAL STRUCTURES

At least two monumental structures can be inferred, at Site 462 and Site 389. At Site 462 two high quality Greek inscriptions and several architectural fragments including an arch were located in spoil from the construction of the new Medical Centre. The inscriptions and arch stone have been removed to the DoA office inside Jarash (see Inscriptions section above). The inscriptions were obviously set into a larger structure, evidenced by recessed sockets and lead sealing at fixing points suggesting a structure of some significance. It is of interest that Fisher noted that ‘a short distance north of the North Gate is a temple sacred to Nemesis. Only foundations and eight Corinthian columns of the portico, now fallen…’ (Fisher 1938, 25). There is no mention of the evidence for the Nemesis dedication, so we cannot be certain that he did not mistake the Octagonal Church for a temple, but there is the possibility that the Medical Centre has been built on this temple site. If the DoA had undertaken archaeological monitoring of the site when the centre was built, this information would not have been lost.

was built, this information would not have been lost. Plate 27: Monumental architecture at Site 462

Plate 27: Monumental architecture at Site 462

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

The second monumental structure is represented by Site 389 (see plate 21) which is a pile of classical masonry including several plain column drum fragments of different diameters, a twisted column fragment, column base and various other limestone architectural fragments. A large number of tesserae including glass tesserae were also recovered from this dump. It appears that this dump of masonry and rubble, which looks quite fresh, originated from the construction of the Jerash Ladies Society immediately to the east which was built in 2001. There are also many architectural fragments including column fragments used as gravemarkers in the Circassian cemetery, into which this dump of masonry fragments has been deposited. At the NE corner of the cemetery the ground is quite a lot higher suggesting there may be a platform in this area, some of which may survive. It is also of note that there are two columns, one limestone and one red granite, outside the entrance to the Jerash Ladies Society complex and these are believed to have been found during the excavations for the new building. It seems likely that there was a monumental structure located here, just outside the City Wall, perhaps a church.

PLATFORMS

Four distinct platforms were located in the rapid walk-over survey of the Wadi Deir at Sites 405, 406, 408 and 447. These sites have been recorded in the database as farmstead / hamlet as there is no appropriate MEGA / JADIS box for platforms. The platforms range in size from 15m x 15m to 47m x 29m and stand up to 1.5m high. Sites 447 and 406 show good stretches of well built monumental sized limestone block walls but generally the purpose and function of the platforms and the extent of masonry is unclear. Sherd and artefact scatters were present on all of the platforms. It is of note that Site 447 has a large rock cut tomb (Site 446) underneath it on the east side. The tomb was inaccessible. While the preliminary interpretation is that the platforms may represent occupation sites it is equally possible, indeed perhaps more likely, that they may represent platforms for monumental structures, such as mausolea or temples.

McCown noted that the road from Gerasa to Birketein, to which these platforms are adjacent, was a Via Sacra and was marked by the remains of hypogaea, mausolea and funerary temples of which standing columns, fragments of stone blocks and inscriptions remained in the late 1920s and 1930s. (McCown 1938, 159).

All of the platforms should be assessed by trial excavation as a matter if urgency before development encroaches any further into the Wadi Deir.

OTHER TYPES OF SITES

Olive Presses and Wine Installations

Only two definite olive oil presses and / or wine installations were identified by the survey, both in the Wadi Deir. The clear olive press installations are at Site 486 and Site 430 (see the reuse of site 486 in rock-cut tomb section). Sites 471 and 522 are also possible olive or wine presses but the sites require clearance and excavation so that they can be properly assessed. A further possible wine installation was noted at Site 204 in the NW where the edge of a plastered rectangular cut was just visible

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

above soil level. The project anticipates that olive and wine press installations will be more frequent further out from the ancient urban centre.

be more frequent further out from the ancient urban centre. Plate 28: Olive press at site

Plate 28: Olive press at site 486

Traditional Houses

Seven traditional houses, including Sites 219, 225, 249 and 362, were noted during the survey although more are located inside the walled city. The surveyors were surprised to be told by local informants that several of these buildings, characterised by mud and straw mortar and plaster and traditional mud roofs, were often only c.60 years old. The building techniques exhibited in these buildings were in use for several centuries throughout the later Medieval and Ottoman period and seem only to have disappeared in the mid 20 th century. The majority of the traditional houses date to the Circassian settlement of Jarash in the late 19 th century.

Due to the time involved in recording the traditional houses the project made a conscious decision to only note their presence with the one exception of Site 225, which was recorded in detail. These buildings are in general falling into advanced decay or partially demolished. It is important that the surviving traditional buildings of Jarash are recorded, protected and retained. They are an essential element of the history of Jarash and add much to the urban landscape.

the history of Jarash and add much to the urban landscape. Plate 29: Traditional House site

Plate 29: Traditional House site 225

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Agricultural Terraces

Agricultural field terrace walls were noted in both the north Wadi Deir and the south Wadi Jarash and also in the occasional patches of open ground in the NW and E survey areas. Indeed, agricultural field terrace walls are a ubiquitous feature of the landscape around Jarash. Examples of the terrace walls in the south Wadi Jarash were recorded in detail at Sites 397 and 501 so that general observations could be made on reuse of Classical masonry, construction details etc. The terrace walls have been rebuilt on numerous occasions and a white earthenware pottery sherd of 19 th century date was recovered from the soil profile under one of the terrace walls, Site 501, providing a terminus post quem for the construction of the wall. However, it is likely that the agricultural terrace walls have been rebuilt on many occasions over the last two millennia.

Caves and Rock Shelters

11 cave or possible rock shelter sites were noted during the survey of the East side of the city. Several of these shad been revealed by new road cuttings. None of the sites located during the 2008 season were particularly convincing and indeed several of them may be natural solution holes within the limestone bedrock (see Geological Notes by Don Boyer).

Type of Site

2005

2008

Total

Quarries

31+

45

76

Rock Cut Tombs

67

64

131

Rock Cut Graves

17

7

24

Mausolea

5

2

7

Sarcophagi

26

15

41

Inscriptions

8

3

11

Artefact Scatters

10

79

89

Caves / Rock Shelters

2

11

13

Traditional Houses

2

7

9

Mills and Water management

9

29

38

Architectural Fragments

34

98

132

Milestones

0

4

4

Olive / Wine Presses

0

5

5

Platforms

0

4

4

Monumental Structures

0

2

2

Other

16

20

36

Total Number Sites

227+

395+

622+

Figure 6. Table showing types and numbers of sites

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

DISCUSSION OF SURVEY RESULTS

The survey has shown that intensive urban development on the east and southeast sides has destroyed many of the sites that could have been expected to be here, especially quarries, tombs and artefact scatters. This is in comparison to the kinds and numbers of sites noted to the W of the city in 2005 and the adjacent NW area surveyed in 2008. To the far east of the survey area E of the city, there was a fall in the number of sites, even artefact scatters, despite the fact that this was a more open area, indicating that we were reaching the outer limits of the activities of the inhabitants of Gerasa (such as burials, rubbish dumping and industries such as tile- making).

The South Wadi Jarash with its mills and the Wadi Deir (North Wadi Jarash) were the areas with the greatest survival of least damaged sites, although it should be noted that development is already encroaching along the Wadi Deir from Jarash and will only increase. Wadi Deir contains evidence of one of the major water supplies to the Roman city and of monumental structures, both upstanding and represented by scatters of architectural fragments and inscriptions (some of which are the product of unmonitored construction in the last few years). The presence of such significant buildings is not surprising, given the importance of the road from Gerasa to Birketein and more were in evidence only 70 years ago (McCown 1938, 159).

Rock-cut tombs of various kinds were present throughout the survey area (except on the alluvial plain of Wadi Deir), cut into the limestone scarps and terraces of the landscape. These tombs often overlooked roads out of Gerasa and, as has already been noted, the major tombs and mausolea are very close to these thoroughfares (Smadeh et al, 1992).

The most distressing result of the 2008 survey was the observation that approximately 30% of the sites recorded in 2005 have since been destroyed or damaged with no intervention at any of them from the Department of Antiquities despite the recommendations of the 2005 report.

THREATS TO THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL RESOURCE

Development – house building, road building

Bulldozer work – indiscriminate use of bulldozers throughout the survey area

Tomb robbing

Afforestation – tree roots, including olive trees, will have caused damage to underlying archaeological deposits

Deep ploughing

Erosion – disturbance of soil balance by new development may cause increased soil erosion

Collapse of tombs due to inadequate consolidation of excavated / partially excavated examples

Apathy

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

RECOMMENDATIONS

The survey has revealed that ongoing development around the ancient city is causing archaeological sites to be destroyed with no archaeological record. Assessment of the sites recorded in the 2005 survey indicate that approximately 10% of the archaeological sites around Jarash are being destroyed every year. This is a shocking statistic. In order to preserve Jordan’s archaeological heritage the following recommendations should be implemented:

It is strongly recommended that a Department of Antiquities representative is tasked with maintaining an ongoing watching brief of all development sites in Jarash. This would involve not only monitoring planning applications identifying new developments, but also making a tour of the area at least once a week to monitor areas of ground clearance and bulldozing so that archaeological sites may be excavated and recorded as they are uncovered and before they are destroyed.

Excavation of sites identified as most under threat e.g. Site 449 to the east of the Octagonal Church; Sites 447, 405, 406 and 408 possible mausolea or temple platforms, all in the Wadi Deir. (All sites in the survey area are under threat).

Development of an archaeological mitigation strategy based on the proposed Development Plan and JHS results to be implemented by the Governor and DoA.

Clearance, restoration and fencing around mausoleum Site 469

Clearance, restoration and fencing of the Octagonal Church in Wadi Deir (no JHS site number)

Clearance, excavation and fencing of the subterranean tomb / house and olive press Site 486.

Clearance, evaluation and restoration of Site 393, possible Roman mill.

Retrieval of milestone bases from Site 426, and collect the highly damaged milestone from next to them, recorded as Site 427.

Surface collection required at Site 344.

Development excluded from areas of highest tomb density

Archaeological intervention – excavation – before any construction works takes place or an archaeological watching brief of sites during development.

Collection of architectural fragments i.e. red granite columns (Sites 450) from the field to the east of the Octagonal Church in the Wadi Deir

Preservation of archaeological and historical sites. Ottoman / Circassian houses Sites 022, 122, 219, 225, 249 and 362 should be preserved. House Site 122 is already falling down and is partially demolished although there had been no further deterioration between 2005 and 2008. Site 225 is in decay, which will advance rapidly. Only nine traditional Ottoman / Circassian houses were located in the entire survey area and these should be preserved. These traditional houses are testament to the Ottoman and later 19 th century Circassian settlement of Jarash and very few remain intact. The JHS survey did not work inside the City Walls where most of the traditional houses survive although it is apparent that many are in danger of collapse and demolition. A separate programme of work focussed on recording and

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

preserving the traditional houses of Jarash should be implemented as a matter of urgency.

Excavation of intact or partially robbed tombs – Sites 230, 231, 436

The water channel in the Wadi Deir (Site 400) is evidence of how water was brought to the City from Birketein. We suggest that a short stretch (c. 10m – 15m) of this water channel, represented by scattered channel blocks Site 400.1-23, is reconstructed and preserved. The harvesting and management of water is a matter of vital importance to the existence and survival of the City and the evidence of how water was maintained should be preserved.

Education. The majority of Jarash residents spoken to by the surveyors during the course of the field work believed that the visible remains within the Roman city walls was the extent of official archaeological interest. The majority of people would then acknowledge that yes there were tombs but the tombs were considered of little or no value, especially as they didn’t have gold in them. Very little value is apparently placed on the archaeological heritage unless it is a large, obvious and impressive monument. The number of bulldozered sarcophagi and Roman masonry and architectural fragments, particularly Site 462 and Site 389 indicates that archaeological remains such as these are considered an impediment during new developments and it is obviously quite acceptable to most people for them to be destroyed by bulldozers. Only a programme of education as to the value and importance of the archaeological heritage can address this problem. The past belongs to everyone and is everyone’s heritage but the destruction of the physical remains of the past suggests that the residents of Jarash do not consider they have any ownership of their past despite the favourable impact of tourism on the local economy.

Money. The majority of Jarash residents were concerned that if we did find archaeological remains on their land the land may be confiscated from them by the Department of Antiquities / The Government without sufficient recompense. There does not appear to be a suitable financial compensation system in place. Rather than confiscation of land, perhaps a system could be implemented whereby a fee is paid to the land-owner who wishes to develop his land, if an archaeological investigation or excavation needs to be carried out in advance of development. Under the threat of losing their land it is not surprising that the majority of people will not report any archaeological discoveries but seek to conceal them instead. The lack of adequate compensation for land which the Department of Antiquities may wish to acquire is perhaps the main contributing factor to the destruction of the archaeological heritage at Jarash and elsewhere in Jordan.

Planning control. While there is a Development Plan for Jarash that is apparently being adhered to in how and where the development along the west side of the city is progressing there is apparently no effective mechanism of planning control. It appears that if a person owns the land they can build on it when they wish without seeking any further permission despite the formal procedures that are supposed to be in place. Until planning legislation and control is introduced it will be almost impossible to monitor development and its impact on archaeological sites.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

CONCLUSIONS

Prehistoric archaeological sites are not visible – perhaps compromised by Roman quarrying and later activity

Probably only about 50% of the archaeological sites are visible due to slopewash and soil dumps from bulldozers, field terraces and natural soil accumulation processes

Site density suggests that between 300 and 1000 archaeological sites have probably been destroyed by construction work. All sites on the hill top plateau on the west of the city have been destroyed or severely compromised by modern development. Sites on the east side of the city have also been severely compromised by development but it is difficult to estimate how many sites may have been destroyed due to the already developed urban nature of this area.

Extensive quarrying and reuse or adaptation of quarries for tombs is common through out the surveyed area

Farms and agricultural production – olive oil and wine presses, farms etc are largely absent from the survey results except in the Wadi Deir but we believe this is due to the proximity of the survey area to the City walls and agricultural features will be located further out from the city.

An extensive Roman cemetery and probably also Byzantine cemeteries are present west and east of the city and probably also along the limestone outcrops along the edge of Wadi Deir.

Industrial activities located outside the city wall are suggested by Sites 094 and 523.

PROPOSALS FOR FURTHER WORK

Continuation of field survey to identify sites in the Jarash City area (10 square km area). It would probably take a further four survey seasons of three weeks duration to complete this.

Excavation of identified sites that are directly under threat or of high significance

Use of ground scanning radar / geophysical prospecting to try and locate tombs not visible on the surface. An initial season of assessment of the hillslope to the S and W of tomb Site 100 is recommended, where Sites 095 and 098 suggest other mausolea may be present.

Identification of research topics – e.g. Tomb typology; geophysical applications; kiln site – pottery typology, etc.

Obtain a colour copy of The Jordan Urban Regeneration and Tourism Development Plans for the City of Jarash March 2004 Scott Wilson for Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities.

Obtain a map showing land owned by Department of Antiquities.

Ina Kehrberg is expected to study the 2008 season ceramics in the next few months, probably 2009. Therefore, they have been left in the Department of Antiquities store at Jarash

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

The JHS Team are grateful to Dr Fawwaz al Khraysheh, Director of the Department of Antiquities of the HK of Jordan for his approval and support. The Team wish to offer their most sincere thanks to Mr Abd al-Majeed Mujalli, Head of Restoration at Jarash who acted as the Department of Antiquities representative to the project for all of his invaluable practical assistance, expertise and kind hospitality. Thanks are also due to His Excellency the Governor of Jarash; and to Abu Abila, Jarash Inspector of Antiquities. The Team would also like to thank the people of Jarash for their hospitality and assistance during fieldwork.

The JHS project is directed by Prof David Kennedy, Professor of Classics and Ancient History at the University of Western Australia and Fiona Baker, Director of Firat Archaeological Services Ltd, Scotland. The team members are Paul Sharman (Orkney Research Centre for Archaeology) surveyor; David ‘Rat’ Connolly (Connolly Heritage Consultancy) who dealt with mapping and created the database; Andrew Card, Anne Poepjes, Don Boyer and Ann Boyer (University of Western Australia) field surveyors and Margaret Struckmeier (Connolly Heritage Consultancy) surveyor and finds processing and cataloguing and Naomi Poepjes (data entry). Ina Kehrberg is the finds and pottery specialist.

The Project is funded by private donation from Mr Don Boyer for which the team is very grateful and also in part by the University of Western Australia.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Map:

UTM Sheet 36 Jarash, 1:50,000 Sheet 31541 Series K737 1977. Grid Zone 36S.

Edition 3-DMA,

Abudanh, F

2007

‘The Water Supply Systems in the Region of Udruh’, SHAJ IX

(2007), 485-496. DoA, Amman.

Abu Dayyeh, A S & Ulayan, Y 2004 ‘Historical and Archaeological Study on Olive Oil Production in Antiquity in the Eastern Mediterranean in Light of the Abdun Press Installation’, SHAJ VIII (2004), 29-39. DoA, Amman.

Abujaber, R S

‘Water Collection in a Dry Farming Society’, SHAJ V (1995),

1995

737-744. DoA, Amman.

‘Un “nouveau” Gouverneur

d’Arabie sur un Milliaire inedit de la Voie Gerasa/Adraa’, Melanges de

L’Ecole Francaise de Rome: Antiquite 110 (1998.1), 243-260.

Agusta-Boularot, S, Mujjali, A & Seigne, J

1998

Browning I 1982 Jerash and the Decapolis Chatto and Windus, London

Fisher, C S 1938 ‘Description of the Site’ in Kraeling 1938, 11-26.

Fisher, C S 1938 ‘Tombs: the South-West Cemetery,’ in Kraeling 1938, 549-571.

Flanagan, J W & McCreery, D W 1995 'Location of GPS Antenna at ACOR Trimble Pathfinder Community Base Station' in the website of the excavations at Tell Nimrin, South Shuna, Jordan. The web address is http://www.cwru.edu/affil/nimrin/menu/nimrin.htm. The precise location is

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

http://www.cwru.edu/affil/nimrin/data/geol/g95_0002.pdf

Gardiner, M & McQuitty, A 1987 ‘A water-mill in Wadi El Arab, North Jordan and Water Mill Development’, PEQ 119.1 (1987), 24-32.

Glueck, N 1939 ‘The Earliest History of Jerash’, BASOR 75 (1939), 22-30.

Glueck, N

‘Explorations in eastern Palestine IV’, AMSOR XXV-XXVIII

1951

(1945-49). ASOR, New Haven, Connecticut.

Greene, J A 1995 ‘The Water Mills of the Ajlun-Kufranja Valley: the Relationship of Technology, Society and Settlement’, SHAJ V (1995), 757-765. DoA, Amman.

Hanbury-Tenison, J W 1987 ‘Jarash region Survey 1984’, ADAJ 31 (1987), 343-390.

Hirschfeld Y

‘A climatic change n the early Byzantine period? Some

2004

archaeological evidence.’ PEQ 136, 133-149.

The Jordan Urban Regeneration and Tourism Development Plans for the City of Jarash March 2004, Scott Wilson for HK of Jordan Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities.

Kennedy, D & Bewley, R 2004 Ancient Jordan from the Air, CBRL, London.

Kennedy, D 2004 ‘Settlement in the Jarash Basin and its Wider Context: A Proposal for Fieldwork and a Research Project to Interpret and Explain Settlement and Landuse in North-West Jordan’, SHAJ VIII (2004), 197-215., DoA, Amman.

Kennedy D L

Gerasa and the Decapolis: A Virtual Island in Northwest

2007

Jordan. Duckworth, London

Khouri R 1986 Jerash: A frontier city of the Roman East. Longman.

Kirkbride, D V W 1958 ‘Notes on a Survey of Pre-Roman Archaeological Sites near Jerash’, Bulletin of the Institute of Archaeology 1 (1958), 9-20. London.

Kraeling C H

Gerasa: City of the Decapolis American Schools of Oriental

1938

Research, New Haven, Connecticut.

1987

343-390.

Leonard, A

‘The Jarash – Tell El-Husn Highway Survey’, ADAJ 31 (1987),

McCown, C C 1938 ‘The Festival Theatre at the Birketein’, in Kraeling 1938, 159-

167.

McQuitty, A

1995

‘Water-Mills in Jordan: Technology, Typology, Dating and

Development’, SHAJ V (1995), 745-751. DoA, Amman.

Mortensen, P 1993 'The Archaeological Mapping of sites in the Mount Nebo Area. The 1993 Survey' pp.462-3 in Ricerca Storico-Archeologica In Giordania XIII, 1993.

Parapetti, R 1985 ‘Jerash-Gerasa: Urban Environment of Two Antagonistic Towns’, SHAJ II (1985), 243-247. DoA, Amman.

Rogan, E L 1995 ‘Reconstructing Water Mills in Late Ottoman Transjordan’, SHAJ V (1995), 685-691. DoA, Amman.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Shami, S

417-421. DoA, Amman.

Smadeh, M, Rasson, A-M & Seigne, J

1992

‘19 th Century Circassian Settlements in Jordan’, SHAJ IV (1992),

1992

‘Fouille de Sauvetage dans La

Necropole Nord-Ouest de Jerash’, ADAJ 36 (1992), 261-279.

Smadi, M & Melhem, I 1997 ‘An Olive Press at Khirbat Zuqrit / Jarash’, ADAJ 41 (1997), 5-12 Arabic section.

Watson, P 2004 ‘Cultural Identity and Wine Production in Northern Jordan’, SHAJ VIII (2004), 485-502. DoA, Amman.

Younker, R W

1995

‘Balanophagy and the Bedrock Industries of Ancient Jordan’,

SHAJ V (1995), 685-691. DoA, Amman.

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CONTACT ADDRESSES

Director Professor David Kennedy, BA (Manchester), D. Phil (Oxford), FSA, FAHA M205, Classics and Ancient History School of Humanities University of Western Australia WA Australia E: dkennedy@cyllene.uwa.edu.au Tel: + 61- 8-6488-2150 Fax: + 61 -8-6488-1182

Co-Director Fiona Baker Firat Archaeological Services Ltd Hillcroft Station Road Rhu, by Helensburgh G84 8LW Scotland E: Fiona@scottish-archaeology.com Tel: 00 44 436 820 334

David Connolly, Paul Sharman, Margaret Struckmeier all c/o Fiona Baker

Anne Poepjes, Naomi Poepjes, Don Boyer, Andrew Card and Ann Boyer all c/o David Kennedy

Dr Ina Kehrberg Department of Archaeology University of Sydney NSW 2006 Australia E: ina.kehrberg-ostrasz@usyd.edu.au Tel: +61 2 90365 5022

HK of Jordan Department of Antiquities representative Abd al-Majeed Mujalli PO Box 88, Amman 11181 Jordan E: aydanaghawy@hotmail.com Tel: 00 962 795 610 852

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

COMMENTS & INITIAL OBSERVATIONS ON THE JHS08 SURFACE COLLECTIONS by Margaret Struckmeier

The Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 (JHS08) was a continuation of the assessment and characterisation project started in 2005. Due to the different types of landscape encountered in this survey varying approaches were taken to ceramic and artefact collection.

In the mainly built-up area east of the City Wall ceramic, artefact and flint collections

were carried out around associated sites, particularly in the environs of tombs. Area collections were also carried out on the few remaining orchard fields that are to be

found in this now mostly developed part of Jarash.

Most of the other open areas in this sector were waste ground or had been used for dumping, therefore it was decided that these were too contaminated for collection to take place.

A potential site for further investigation lies within the old Circassian graveyard (Site

390). A dump of monumental masonry, earth and artefacts (Site 389) is located almost adjacent to the east City Wall. The assemblage retrieved from here may represent a significant structure, now destroyed, and it contains an unusually high concentration of tesserae (Bags 470 & 588, Crate 13) as well as two glass tesserae (Bag 589, Crate 20). A large pottery assemblage was collected (Crate 15) which, taken in conjunction with the associated architectural fragments, strongly suggests a building of some importance.

In the southern Wadi Jarash a higher concentration of ceramics was present in the terraced fields due to the more open nature of the landscape. However, it should be noted that this area would most probably be affected by slope wash and the introduction of soil for terracing purposes.

Wadi Deir (Wadi Jarash north) revealed three interesting areas of pick up to the east

of the Jarash to Birketein road. The first of these areas represented a collection in the

orchard (Site 449) directly to the east of the remains of the Octagonal Church. This

orchard revealed an assortment of marble fragments (Bags 530 – 534, Crate 13) which have now been assessed by geologist, Don Boyer. There is a strong possibility that these fragments would have been used as flooring material (Opus Sectile) within the Octagonal Church itself.

The second notable area (Site 444) lies to the north of the Octagonal Church. This artefact scatter revealed a remarkably rich ceramic assemblage considering the small field that it was collected from. This field lay adjacent to a large platform with a tomb underneath it (Site 447), which may represent a farm or villa site. Apart from the large amount of pottery from this site (Bags 400 – 406, Crate 13), no other artefacts apart from three tesserae were found.

A third area of interest was represented by ceramic and artefact collections potentially

associated with the foundations of two structures (Sites 405 & 406), possibly Roman

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

agricultural buildings, and later re-built by the Circassians. Both collections revealed similar ceramic and artefact assemblages, including tesserae and Roman glass (Site 405, Bags 329 – 333 & 381 – 382; Site 406, Bags 340 – 342, 379, 380 & 389 – 393), although it should be noted that Site 406 has been used as a modern dump.

To the west of the Jerash to Birketein road it was decided, where possible, to collect from every field. There were some exceptions to this as there were intensive vegetable allotments and a few locked orchards with no access. Over this whole stretch, two sites were identified as especially noteworthy. The first came from the west end of an orchard (sherd scatter Site 494) which contained a high concentration of tesserae (Bag 695, Crate 13). This may be associated with Site 495 nearby, comprising two large piles of stones, some dressed, and an area of smaller rubble throughout the soil in the surrounding area. Abd al-Majeed Mujalli also confirmed that this was the site of an inscription, retrieved some time before by the Department

of Antiquities (DOA). Site 495 may be the site f a temple.

The second and most intriguing site was sherd and artefact scatter Site 523, lying mainly within the boundary of a small terraced orchard with recently built terrace walls. This site contained a variety of ceramic sherds (Bags 576 - 582, 684 - 687, Crate 19) of different types and periods, including many large Ummayad bowl sherds and one fragment of a Jarash bowl (Bag 581). Three kiln wasters were identified also (Bags 582 & 691, Crate 19). Thirty-three tesserae were also collected along with clay tiles, basalt rubbers, marble, glass and one fragment of mother of pearl, which may be an inlay. (Bags 573 – 575, 688 in Crate 19; Bags 583-585, 689 and 690 in Crate 13 and Bags 586 and 587 in Crate 20). At the time it was decided not to do a gridded pick-up from this area until the assemblage had been looked at more closely by Ina Kehrberg.

The area to the north-west of the City Wall represented a continuation of the 2005 survey. Having returned first of all to assess the condition of the Necropolis (Sites 43 – 63) it was decided after seeing evidence of further tomb robbing that Site 44 should have a further pick up. The majority of the ceramics retrieved from the robber’s upcast were of the same Late Roman/Early Byzantine storage jar type with a gypsum coating that had been collected in 2005.

A

cistern in the northwest area located in the garden of a private house and now used

as

a family rubbish dump (Site 251) could potentially reveal some interesting dating

information. Excavated by DoA workmen, it was found to contain an in situ ceramic water pipe, complete with lead filter (Bag 837, Crate 11) and two complete grey clay square tiles (Bag 838, Crate 11). Numerous ceramics were also excavated from the cistern as was a Roman coin (Bag 843, Crate 20) but all these finds are part of the later backfilling of the cistern, which shows two phases of use.

The final site of interest in the northwest area was a large orchard with a partially collapsed area of terrace wall (Site 204). This wall had many pottery sherds within it and also in its collapse on to the lower terrace, where more large sherds were collected (Bag 243 – 246 & 248, Crate 14), including one kiln tile with glaze on it (Bag 247, Crate 14). A further collection was undertaken on the lower level (Site 263) where four kiln wasters were found (Bag 284, Crate 15) and an adjacent Site

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

254, also an artefact scatter also contained a substantial amount of pottery (Bags 269- 273, Crate 14).

Flint also formed part of the collection policy over the whole survey area. It was found that the flint and chert (lower silica content) was predominately debitage with a few cores and very few tools.

Given the large amount of construction work that has taken place around Jarash it is becoming more difficult to find sites that have very little contamination. A number of fields in Wadi Deir seem to have had new soil spread on them and as a result of terracing around newly built houses, soil has been moved around, making it difficult to ascertain whether the ceramics and artefacts are still in situ. Many open areas have already been scarped out in advance of road building and construction work, leaving little or no artefacts to collect.

Ceramics were extracted from a soil profile (Site 475) at a development site on the west side of the Jarash to Birketein road. The uppermost metre of deposit was recently redeposited soil from the building site immediately to the east, which overlay c. 1m depth of in situ rendzina soil. A local man showed the survey team a complete flask of late Roman/early Byzantine date that had been recovered from this construction site. The flask was photographed (opposite) but not retained.

The flask was photographed (opposite) but not retained. The 2008 collection has been archived and is

The 2008 collection has been archived and is stored in the DoA finds store room at Jarash, while the 2005 collection is in the French Store at the Archaeological Camp. Ina Kehrberg will study the collection on her return to Jordan in January 2009.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

SUMMARY OF DR INA KEHRBERG’S PRELIMINARY ARTEFACT REPORT ON JHS05 SEASON SURFACE COLLECTION

Dr Ina Kehrberg has undertaken a preliminary assessment of the JHS05 surface collections. The basic typological and chronological database has been completed for each site but more detailed analyses will be undertaken on completion of all survey seasons when the project is brought to publication. However, some initial comments and observations on the 2005 season finds can be made and the following is a summary of Dr Kehrberg’s preliminary assessment.

2354 diagnostic sherds and 68 small finds (glass, marble and 2 coins) were collected in the JHS05 season as well as 3 large crates of pottery slag and wasters from Site 94. Overall c.3000 artefacts form a reasonable basis for quantitative analyses. The majority of the sherds and small finds fit typologically into pre-Islamic periods but three distinctly defined chronological clusters of assemblages have been identified.

Site 094 (a dense sherd scatter including many wasters) belongs to the Late Byzantine - Umayyad period, possibly focussed in the late 6 th and early 7 th century although further analyses is required to refine the initial assessment.

Site 42.2 contains an even scatter of Late Hellenistic to Late Byzantine sherds in keeping with the other earlier sites but also has a reasonable number of Mamluke and other Late Islamic plain pottery, including a large number of pottery sherd tools, that could equally be dated to the Ottoman period.

The third defined chronological cluster is the largest, fitting within the Late Roman to Late Byzantine periods of the city, roughly dating from the earlier 3 rd to the earlier 7 th century AD. Sites from this category include Sites 16, 21, 44 and 220, as well as Sites 74, 75 and 133 – 138 (which are all hypogaea), which represent Late Roman and Late Byzantine dates indicating two separate periods of deposition.

The broadest spectrum of equally represented generic pottery types range from the Late Hellenistic, Early Roman, Roman, Late Roman and Early Byzantine period and include the imports Late Hellenistic Grey Ware, Rhodian amphorae fragments, Eastern Terra Sigillata and African Red Slip wares. These are not evenly spread throughout the survey area and dominate in clusters at separate sites such as Sites 107, 132, 139-144, 93, 115, 5, 57, 84, 25 and 100. Pre-dating these sites are Site 93 with predominantly Late Hellenistic and early Roman sherds of the end 2 nd century to 1 st century BC – 1 st century AD and Site 107, which is predominantly Early Roman and Roman or 1 st – 2 nd century AD.

In summary, the surface collection reflects that the Jarash hinterland has been occupied at various locations and at varying degrees from the Late Hellenistic to the Islamic period. A few Iron Age sherds were also collected but the earliest periods seem to focus on the Late Hellenistic – Roman necropolis phase and early urban spread, followed by a geographical and chronological shifting into Late Antiquity concentrating on three major cultural groups, those of the Late Roman and Early Byzantine; the end of the Byzantine and Early Islamic / Umayyad period and a final

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

small concentration of the Late Islamic period. This pattern reflects the pattern within the walled city of Gerasa and later Jarash.

INA KEHRBERG CHRONOLOGICAL NOTE

Standard Jordanian Chronology of the Classical Periods relevant to the history of the site

Early Roman (including Nabataean 63 BC – AD 135)

EROM

I

63-37 BC

(also referred to as Late Hellenistic, depending on the nature of the context and deposit)

ER

II

37-4 BC

(ditto)

ER

III

4 BC-AD 73

ER

IV

AD 73-135

 

Late Roman (AD135-324)

LROM

I

ca 135-193

(My definition ‘Roman’ is used throughout for post-AD

135 second century contexts and deposits in order to stress their essential

Roman cultural nature, the first and second being the main centuries for urban planning and construction of Classical Roman Gerasa)

LR

II

193-235

LR

III

235-284

LR

IV

284-324

 

Early Byzantine (AD 324 – 491)

EBYZ

I

324-363

EB

II

363-392

EB

III

392-450

EB

IV

450-491

 

Late Byzantine (AD 491 – 640)

LBYZ

I

ca 491- 527

LB

II

527-565

LB

III

565-614

LB

IV

614-ca 640

BYZ

given to artefacts where tighter definition is not possible

L/BYZ-UM

ditto: mainly for glass (standard reference for 6-8 th c. plain glass) and pottery body sherds of coarse ware [storage jars, basins, etc] and some common ware jars

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

SUMMARY PRESS RELEASE FOR MUNJAZAT

Site Name: Jarash Project name: Jarash Hinterland Survey Duration: 6 – 25 September 2008 Number of Workmen: 0

Sponsors: Mr Don Boyer and University of Western Australia, affiliated to CBRL

Directors: Dr David Kennedy and Fiona Baker DoA Representative: Mr Abd al Mujeed Mujalli

Cost of Project: 2700JD

The Jarash Hinterland Survey completed the second season of a multi-season project with the objective of surveying a 10 km sq area centred on the ancient city of Gerasa during September 2008. The area surveyed included the urbanised east side of the ancient city, outside the city walls, part of the south Wadi Jarash and the north Wadi Deir as far as Birketein and an urbanised area to the NW of the ancient city. The total area now covered by the survey amounts to 2.5sq km and now encircles the ancient city. A total of 625 sites have been recorded.

Urban development and expansion is happening at a rapid pace at Jarash and the objectives of the survey, in response to this rapid development, are to record the archaeological sites of the Gerasa hinterland before they are destroyed by development and to contribute this information to our understanding of Gerasa . Sites that were recorded in 2005 were revisited to determine survival rates and over 30% of site recorded just three years ago have been destroyed. This indicates that the archaeological sites outside the ancient city wall are being destroyed at a rate of 10% per year.

The survey identified several significant sites including a bulldozered monumental structure on the site of the new Medical Centre outside the North Gate of Gerasa. Two Greek inscriptions were recovered from the bulldozer spoil as well as several fine architectural fragments and Mr Mujalli is continuing salvage works at this site, which may be the site of the Temple of Nemesis. No archaeological monitoring or intervention was carried out before or during the construction of the Medical Centre.

A further monumental structure also now represented as a bulldozer heap of

architectural fragments including red granite column and a total of 16 columns,

tesserae and pottery was located at the Circassian cemetery immediately adjacent to

the Jarash Ladies Society from where it probably originated.

Over 100 fine quality architectural and sarcophagus fragments were located in all survey areas around the city on bulldozer dumps and on waste ground or re-used in

later walls. A weathered and defaced bas relief of three figures was located above

the

entrance to a hypogeaum tomb.

In

the Wadi Deir the scattered remains of the water channels that brought water to

Gerasa were recorded along with four olive / wine press installations and two possible mills. Two mills were recorded in the south Wadi Jarash, one of them possibly Roman in origin.

Jarash Hinterland Survey 2008 Season

Over 75 rock cut tombs were located, some of them robbed only recently and a few that may still be intact. Four distinctive artificial platforms located in the Wadi Deir may be platforms for mausolea or funerary temples or perhaps even farmsteads. Some 45 quarry sites and around 20 cisterns were also located throughout the survey area.

Seven traditional houses of late 19 th – early 20 th century date were recorded by the project and a separate project to record these fast disappearing structures should be undertaken and indeed the traditional houses should be restored and preserved.

A new Roman Milestone was located and recovered near to the three previously reported in 1998 one Roman mile N of Gerasa and all four milestones have been recovered for safe keeping by the Department of Antiquities.

The NW necropolis of Gerasa where a highly elaborate Palmyrene style tomb and other high status tombs were first recorded in 1992 has suffered further bulldozer damage, levelling and robbing despite the 2005 recommendations that this site be given immediate protection.

While the survey has been successful in identifying many new sites we think only c. 50% are visible due to soil build up. It is also very depressing work to find significant archaeological sites destroyed by development with no archaeological intervention in advance or during new construction works. We urge the Department of Antiquities to introduce a system where all new excavation and development works are evaluated by archaeologists in advance of and monitored during development.

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Area of 2005 survey
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