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Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Nahariya's Three Thousand Year Old Citadel

The remains of a 3,400-year-old Canaanite citadel unearthed in the beach resort of Nahariya, northern Israel will become part of a smart block of apartments! In fact the artefacts discovered there will be displayed in the basement of the building.

The Israel Antiquities Authority has announced that the large excavation – which it conducted with youth groups, including students from the town's Shchakim High School – was carried out as part of a project by the Kochav Company to build the high rise block.

“Given the extraordinary nature and quality of the finds, the Israel Antiquities Authority sought a solution that would allow the conservation of some of the remains for the benefit of the public", said the IAA.

“Thus, with the assistance of architect Alex Shpol, planner for the Interior Ministry’s Regional Committee for Planning and Construction, it was decided that part of the citadel would be preserved in the building’s basement, where it will be displayed for the enjoyment of the residents and visitors".

Those working on the dig say the citadel once served the needs of mariners who frequented the ancient port city. 

“It seems that the citadel which we uncovered was used as an administrative centre that served the mariners who sailed along the Mediterranean coast 3,400 years ago. There was probably a dock alongside the citadel".

Among artefacts discovered in the citadel’s rooms included ceramic figurines in the form of humans and animals, bronze weapons and imported pottery vessels that attest to the extensive commercial and cultural relations that existed at that time with Cyprus and the rest of the lands in the Mediterranean basin.

The fortress was destroyed at least four times by an intense conflagration, and each time it was rebuilt.

“An abundance of cereal, legumes and grape seeds were found in the burnt layers, which are indicative of the provisions the sailors would purchase", said the experts.

© Natalie Wood (06 January 2016) 

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