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Area G: Structures


Area G lies in the eastern part of the acropolis, about 25 m to the east of Terrace J. Here a peculiar building was found, whose function is still unknown. It can be dated to Iron Age II (on the basis of the sherds found on the floor under the inwards collapsed walls). This building was realized by excavating a 20x20 m area, in the Iron Age I levels, to a depth of at least 5 m. The sides were cut at a slight angle and covered with mud bricks walls, thinner at the base (1.8 m) than at the top (2 m), without foundations. The bricks were whitish, orange, red, and amaranth, mostly square (30x30x10 cm) but sometimes rectangular (40x30x10 cm). The walls were supposedly 8 m high, probably standing for at least 3 m over the ground. However, no traces of an entrance or of a stairway, either wooden or made of bricks, were found. At the height of the second row of bricks from the bottom, a pebble-stones pavement was laid. The building should have had a very short lifetime, or it could not even have ever been finished. It then reverted to a waste-pit, from the Assyrian period probably up to the neo-Babylonian time. The dump was, however, of a somewhat special nature, since it contained hundreds of bones, sherds (many of them of Red Slip ware), and objects such as a bronze smiting god, a fragment of a sculpture of a lion muzzle in basalt, a juglet handle with the impression of a royal stamp seal with a four winged scarab, and three incised Aramaean ostraca, one of which bears the characters []lwr. An origianry function of the building as a cistern or as a storage room seems to be excluded by the absence of plaster on the wall and of any trace of a roof. Its destruction could be connected to the Assyrian conquest under Tiglatpileser III.