Wood Economy in Early Roman Period Jerusalem

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In this study we present the identification of several Early Roman (63 b.c.e.–70 c.e.) charred wood assemblages, collected from the “Lower City” of Jerusalem. The results outline elements in Jerusalem’s nearby woody vegetation, characterized by a mosaic of native Mediterranean maquis-forest species and olive orchards, and possibly pine and cypress stands. The arboreal surrounding of Jerusalem supplied the city with pruned olive branches and other types of agricultural refuse to serve as firewood. Local conifers (pines and cypress) as well as imported conifers (cedar of Lebanon), were used for construction purposes. The results further highlight important issues such as social status and importation of wood. The occurrence of prestigious imported tree species within the charcoal assemblage of the Lower City (e.g., cedar, boxwood) indicates the presence of wealthy residences, standing in contrast to prior assumptions that suggest a low social status for the inhabitants within this area.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-87
Number of pages17
JournalBulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2019


  • Charcoal
  • Dendroarchaeology
  • Early Roman Period
  • Firewood
  • Garbage
  • Horticulture
  • Jerusalem
  • Jerusalem Israel
  • Roman Architecture
  • Urban Archaeology
  • Wood
  • Wooden Artifacts


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