The high mound of Beth-Shean dominates the fertile Beth-Shean
Valley at the junction of the Jezreel and Jordan Valleys.
Some four thousand years of history have been traced at this
site, making it one of the most important archaeological
sites in Israel.
Tel Beth-Shean was first investigated on a large scale by
the University of Pennsylvania expedition from 1921 to 1933,
during which important discoveries were made, mainly
regarding the three hundred years of Egyptian rule in Canaan
(ca. 1450 to 1150 BCE).
Nine seasons of excavations were conducted from 1989 to 1996
as part of our project. The work was carried out in six
excavation areas and enabled reexamination of the results of
the previous expedition and the achievement of more precise
results, utilizing modern research methods. Among the new
discoveries were: an exceptional public building from the
Early Bronze I period; Canaanite dwelling quarters of the
second millenniun BCE, ; a dwelling quarter which served the
Egyptian garrison of the 19th-20th Dynasties; reexamination
of the Egyptian Residency of the 20th Dynasty and the
excavation of a an administrative building of the 19th
Dynasty below it; remains of the Iron Age I Canaanite city
constructed after termination of the Egyptian presence ;
remains of administrative structures dated to the 10th-9th
centuries; and a large dwelling of the Iron Age II period
which was destroyed with the rest of the city during the
Assyrian conquest in 732 BCE. Remains from the Hellenistic,
Roman, Byzantine, Early Arab and Medieval periods were also
The excavations at Beth-Shean are in the process of final
publication. Two volumes have already appeared, the third is
in press, and the fourth and final volume is in advanced
stages of preparation.