1,600-year-old pottery kiln exposed in the Western Galilee
A workshop where jars were produced 1,600 years ago (Roman period) in which there is a unique kiln used to fire the vessels was revealed in archaeological excavations of the Israel Antiquities Authority in Shlomi. The excavations are being carried out prior to the construction of a new neighborhood at the initiative of the Israel Lands Administration and the Shlomi Local council.
|Joppe Gosker, excavation director on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority, inside the pottery workshop’s |
water reservoir in Shlomi [Credit: Royee Liran/Israel Antiquities Authority]
According to Joppe Gosker, excavation director on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority, “What makes the pottery works so special is its unique kiln, which was hewn in bedrock and is unlike most of the kilns known to us that were built of stone, earth and mud. The ancient workshop included a system for storing water, storage compartments, a kiln, etc.”.
|The kiln had two chambers: one for the fire to burn and one for the clay pots to vitrify |
[Credit: Karen Covello-Paran, Israel Antiquities Authority]
According to Anastasia Shapiro, a geologist with the Israel Antiquities Authority who is researching the production of pottery vessels, “We can explain the quarrying of this rare kiln right here because of the special geological conditions found in the area of Shlomi: here there is chalk bedrock, which on the one hand is soft and therefore easily quarried, and on the other is sufficiently strong to endure the intense heat”.
|The ancient ceramic workshop is 1,600 years old, meaning it dates back to the period when the Romans |
occupied the region, excavators say [Credit: Royee Liran, Israel Antiquities Authority]
Source: Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs [July 27, 2016]