ASCE - Tomb 3


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Thursday, June 1, 2006 to Thursday, August 31, 2006

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Tomb 3, excavated from June 22 to July 18, 2006, is a 9.5 m long and 4 m wide excavation trench, south of and in the same orientation as Tomb 1. The chamber tomb was first noticed via the excavation of nearby test trenches, followed by the full excavation of the tomb itself. The dromos, aligned N-S, is 5.6 m long and 0.6 m wide at its south end while at the doorway its width varies between 1.0 m at the floor and 0.3 m at the highest point. Tomb 3 was in use from LH IIIA1 to LH IIIB1, ca. 1400-1200 BCE, but appears to have been purposely and carefully cleaned out at the end of this period of use. Stratigraphic observations suggest the dromos may have been re-opened eight times. Excavations found limited skeletal and artefactual finds, although the chamber, stomion, and dromos were all well preserved and provided substantial stratigraphical evidence. A single grave was opened into the dromos floor, the initial cutting of which measures 1.6 m x 0.7 m. Stone slabs of the grave cover were discovered 30 cm below floor level and the central covering stone was found displaced nearby. The stomion was blocked with caliche and sandy-red limestone slabs. The slabs were placed horizontally without any connecting material between them. Only one slab, the largest, was placed vertically at the front face of the construction (facing the dromos). The total height of the construction was about 1 m and its width about 60 cm. The tomb chamber, a circular space with a diameter varying between 2.4 m and 3.0 m, was initially opened and entered from above. Its roof is well preserved and has a thickness of ~60 cm. The chamber was filled with soil which had accumulated through the small hole in the roof used for initial entry. Only one grave was found in a rectangular pit with an E-W orientation, built in a style similar to the grave found in the dromos.