Joe D. Seger and James W. Hardin

Gezer VII: The Middle Bronze and Later Fortifications in Fields II, IV, and VIII

Annual of the Hebtew Union College / Nelson Glueck School of Biblical Archaeology

Eisnebrauns, 2013


In 1912 R. A. S. Macalister published reports on his Palestine Exploration Fund excavations at Tell Gezer in central Israel, including notice of having traced almost a full mile of defense walls around the site. Now, a century later, a detailed reassessment of these fortifications is provided in the release of Gezer VII: The Middle Bronze and Later Fortifications in Fields II, IV, and VII, (Eisenbrauns, Inc., Winona Lake, IN, 2013; 428 pp. +CD of plans and field photos).

This volume, by Mississippi State University, Cobb Institute of Archaeology Director Joe D. Seger and Anthropology and Middle Eastern Cultures Professor James W. Hardin, features excavation work directed by Seger and his staff at Gezer between 1968 and 1974 under the sponsorship of Hebrew Union College and Harvard University. Its major focus is on the area of Macalister's "Southern Gate" in Field IV, and along his "Inner" and "Outer" wall systems on both the southern (in Field II) and northern (in Field VIII) sides of the site. The volume contains much new data providing a confident dating of the Southern Gate complex and the Inner Wall system to the late Middle Bronze Age between 1700-1500 B.C.E. MB age occupation levels yielded a hoard of gold jewelry and early evidence of alphabetic writing along with other domestic artifacts and installations from within rooms of an intramural storage complex.

Reinvestigations of segments of the Outer Wall system provided support for a date of origin in the Late Bronze period ca. 1400 B.C.E. along with confirmation of Macalister's conclusion that a major rebuilding of these fortifications took place during the Selucid era in the second century B.C.E.


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