You may notice that the excavation trench also contains a number of round features. These are Medieval pits dating to the 13th-14th centuries. More specifically, they are robbing trenches, dug into earlier settlement levels with the intent of stealing stone building materials for reuse. The following picture features the remains of a much earlier settlement level dating to the Hittite New Kingdom (ca.1500-1200 BCE).
The picture above shows the remains of a very peculiar find. Excavators came upon this hollow tunnel that appears to have run under the settlement foundations and to have been too small and narrow for a person to crawl into. The nearby discovery of what appears to be a clay pipeline may point to its function as a sewer system.
This last picture is a good example of archaeological stratigraphy. The vertical dirt wall illustrates various layers of occupation. Particularly interesting is the thick layer above the stone remains towards which Dr. Gates is pointing. This level shows the remains of the Iron Age “occupation”. The quotation marks are relevant here because the excavators are still unsure as to the character of the site at this period. No structural remains have been found and artifacts suggest random trash disposal rather than regular habitation. Dr. Gates also informed that whereas previous occupants consumed great quantities of fish, no such faunal remains were found in Iron Age strata. This change in the cultural and physical aspect is especially interesting in view of the events that marked the end of the Bronze Age (ca.1200 BCE) throughout the Mediterranean. At this time, the ancient Mediterranean world suffered a crisis which caused the disintegration of many state-level societies, including the Hittites, and the weakening of great powers such as Egypt. The exact causes of this crisis are still the subject of active research, but scholars generally agree that it occurred as a result of a gradual process of decline involving disruptions in trading mechanisms, destructions (human and natural), and widespread abandonments.
The Kinet Höyük team is performing its last season of fieldwork after 15 years of excavation. In the coming years, material from the site will be further studied and interpreted, a process which we hope will yield more answers to so many interesting questions.
To finish this blog post, here are a few more pictures featuring other sites we visited. Below is the interior of a recently renovated Armenian Church. The last picture shows the exterior part of the Adana Museum, with a beautıful Mosque in the background.
On Tuesday we begin our first day of survey work... we'll keep you updated!!!