Off at the crack of dawn to my little piece of Israel. We had marked out for us a 5 meter x 5 meter square. Within that square we knock off some lengths on each side to get a 4x4 square. This leaves a "balk" between each square to allow for access when a lot of adjacent squares are dug out. We then constructed an overhead shade to keep the sun out. Here was the final result:
We are on the outside of the edge of the temple podium. The podium is the platform on which the temple sits to make it more visible and prominent. This podium is at least 6' high, but you can see that there has been much dirt that has accumulated against the podium so we are up near the top. That's the dirt we will remove. What do we expect to find? Well, take a look at the already dug-out square next to ours:It appears that a column fell off the podium sideways and most of it has been uncovered. We expect to uncover the rest of it and more besides.
The rest of our morning we started to take off the top layer of dirt in our square. There is not much to be found in this layer, so the top 10 cm or so is pretty much ignored. But boy it's a surprisingly large volume. A great many barrows of dirt were moved to a dump pile before the "time to clean up" call went out. We didn't quite make 10 cm. but will finish that first step tomorrow.
An unofficial blog on the archaeological excavation at Horbat Omrit, northern Israel. 22 May to 22 June 2010.