Tell Halaf Grabungsprojekt

Area E

Prof. Dr. W. Orthmann

Excavations at the «Stadttempel» in 2009
The excavations in the area of the so-called «Stadttempel», which had begun in 2008, were continued in the season of 2009 and the area of excavation was extended considerably.
The excavation had to be limited to open spaces between modern houses. In the northern trench (square 3400), we encountered the continuation of the courtyard with a stone pavement on a pebble surface, which had been discovered in 2008 (Fig. 1). Underneath it and in the western half of the trench we found massive mudbrick structures belonging to a filled-in, larger building. A number of rooms of this building were discovered in the west and the south of the trench, while a courtyard was located in the eastern part of the building in the older levels as well. In this level, it was paved with burnt bricks.

The strength of the walls and the relatively elaborate manner in which they were constructed, give reason to believe that they might belong to a public building (Fig. 2). The trench of a modern sewer channel at the western edge of the excavation area, which cut the walls, was re-excavated in order to investigate its section. It was established that the older building rested upon a continuous mudbrick terrace. Its bottom has not been reached anywhere yet.

Further to the south a smaller trench was opened in square 3498. In it, we hoped to find the surface of the temple courtyard. However, this end was not achieved, possibly because of a disturbance by a Hellenistic stone-slab grave (Fig. 3). Considering form and construction, it matches exactly the graves that were found in the excavations of 1913 in the area of the «Stadttempel».

(Translation: A. Sollee / B. Sollee)

1Areas of excavation in Area E (Design: W. Orthmann)
2Mudbrick structures of a public building (Photo: L. Simons)
3Hellenistic stone-slab grave (Design: G. Elsen-Novák)
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