Thursday, August 07, 2008

A BYZANTINE-ERA OLIVE PRESS has been discovered in the Galilee:
Large Ancient Olive Press Discovered In Nth Israel
Thursday, 7 August 2008, 10:40 am
Press Release: Israel Government

Large Olive Press Discovered In Northern Israel

6 August 2008 - An ancient olive- oil production complex dating from the 6th-7th Centuries CE – one of the largest ever exposed in Israel – was discovered at Ahihud, in excavations conducted by the Israel Antiquities Authority.

A unique and impressive complex for producing oil that dates to the Byzantine period, which is also one of the largest uncovered in the country so far, was discovered recently during trial excavations conducted by the Israel Antiquities Authority in Moshav Ahihud, in the Western Galilee. The excavations are being carried out as part of a development plan to enlarge the village.

According to Michael Cohen, the excavation director on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority, “a mighty conflagration occurred in the olive press in the seventh century CE. Remains of the blaze, which are quite evident on the walls of the building, destroyed the structure and negated the installation’s use”. This event “preserved” many of the details of the olive press.

UPDATE" Here's the press release at the IAA website. (Via the Agade list.)