Assaf Yasur-Landau

Assaf Yasur-Landau
University of Haifa | haifa · Department of Maritime Civilizations

PhD

About

118
Publications
24,995
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Introduction
Assaf Yasur-Landau is currently an Associate Professor at the Department of Maritime Civilizations, University of Haifa, and head of the laboratory for Coastal Archaeology and Underwater Survey. His research is primarily concerned with the ways that the cultures of the Eastern Mediterranean during the Bronze and Early Iron Ages (e.g. Canaanites, Philistines, Myceaneans, Cypriots and Phoenicians) interacted with each other as well as adapted to the ever changing political, social and ecological conditions of the eastern Mediterranean.
Additional affiliations
August 2009 - August 2015
University of Haifa
Position
  • Professor (Associate)

Publications

Publications (118)
Article
Four lead ingots were found as part of a shipwreck cargo in the southern anchorage of Caesarea in Israel. Analysis of the lead and a study of the markings incised on three of them are presented here for the first time. Four Cypro-Minoan signs are identified and paralleled with signs found on Late Cypriot artefacts. Lead isotope analysis indicates t...
Article
The Castle of Dor occupied a strategically important location on the Carmel Coast in Israel. This little-known castle has been identified by modern scholarship with Crusader Merle. A new excavation, conducted in 2018, produced finds which shed light on the architecture and time of use of the castle. The excavation revealed an elaborate building, co...
Article
Full-text available
The protected Tel-Dor coastal embayment in the eastern Mediterranean preserves an unusually complete stratigraphic record that reveals human-environmental interactions throughout the Holocene. Interpretation of new seismic profiles collected from shallow marine geo-physical transects across the bay show five seismic units were correlated with strat...
Presentation
Full-text available
Underwater surveys in the Dor Lagoon have identified a wrecked cargo of marble slabs and additional architectural stone items, as well as three stone anchors. Preliminary dating of the site points to the fourth-to- seventh centuries CE. The cargo showed signs of previous use, indicating that the ship may have been involved in the spolia trade. The...
Article
Full-text available
This article presents new archaeological observations and multidisciplinary research from Dor, Israel to establish a more reliable relative sea level for the Carmel Coast and Southern Levant between the Middle Bronze Age and the Roman period (ca. 3500-1800 y BP). Our record indicates a period of low relative sea level, around-2.5 m below present, f...
Article
Full-text available
Tsunami events in antiquity had a profound influence on coastal societies. Six thousand years of historical records and geological data show that tsunamis are a common phenomenon affecting the eastern Mediterranean coastline. However, the possible impact of older tsunamis on prehistoric societies has not been investigated. Here we report, based on...
Poster
Full-text available
The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically disrupted international archaeological collaboration throughout the world, forcing numerous expeditions to cancel excavation seasons. While other intellectual collaborations continue using various tools, the option for remote collaboration in the field of archaeology is far more limited as there is no real repl...
Poster
Full-text available
The Mediterranean coast reflects complex long-term relationships between natural marine, terrestrial, and aeolian processes that shape this dynamic environment and have affected human settlement over time. Tel-Dor, northwest Israel, is a city mound adjacent to a bay that evolved from coastal paleosols into a marine marsh and finally a largely enclo...
Poster
Full-text available
The coast of the Carmel is a treasure trove for the study of submerged Pottery Neolithic sites. During the last 30 years such sites have been the focus of research primarily conducted though underwater survey and less through underwater excavations. The site of Habonim North, a recently discovered submerged Pottery Neolithic site, was chosen as a c...
Article
An on‐land frequency domain electromagnetic geophysical survey was conducted across a tombolo delimiting the southern bay of Tel Dor (northern Israel) to the south. It was accompanied by a marine archaeological survey adjacent to its northern edge. Results indicate a deep channel connecting the bay and the Tantura Lagoon to the south. At its northe...
Poster
Full-text available
The easily accessible aeolianite sandstone ridges along the Southern Levantine coast have long provided a convenient source of stone. Widespread coastal evidence for use of this sandstone, known locally as 'kurkar' rock, is demonstrated by its utilization for the building of homes and public structures dating back to the Neolithic. These activities...
Article
Full-text available
For years there has been much speculation surrounding the abandonment of the Middle Bronze Age IIB palace of Tel Kabri, ca. 1700 BCE. There are no weapons, hoards of money and jewelry, or visible evidence for fire, which rules out hostile attack or conquest. There are also no indications of drought or environmental degradation that might have force...
Article
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en The site of Shavei Zion is an enigmatic deposit of hundreds of figurines and ceramic vessels found on the sunken kurkar ridge off the coast of the western Galilee. Despite its importance to the understanding of both maritime activities and cultic practices, the site has never been fully published. Only a part of the figurine assemblage has been...
Article
Hazor was unquestionably the largest Bronze Age Canaanite site, standing as an anomaly in the southern Levant in terms of its size, elaborate public architecture, special geopolitical stature and far-reaching international networks. While the site has been well established as an urban center with many temples, the use of each of Hazor’s temples and...
Article
During the 2017 excavation season at Tel Kabri, Iron Age remains were found cutting into the western part of the Middle Bronze Age palace. These remains consisted of a segment of a large structure and a series of sizable pits. Similar Iron Age remains were unearthed during previous soundings in Areas D and F of the excavation and were loosely dated...
Presentation
Full-text available
The early Iron Age in the Levant marks a transformation in eastern Mediterranean marine adaptation. The nature of the cargoes seems to have changed: during the Late Bronze Age, maritime trade was dominated by cargoes of metal and pottery from Cyprus as well as amphorae from along the Levantine coast. In the Iron Age, however, there is relatively li...
Poster
Full-text available
Paleoclimatologists have used archaeological remains in coastal areas as a sea-level proxy for investigating changes in sea-level over time. However, in many circumstances the coastal installations themselves are difficult to date using conventional methods due to constant erosion and corrosion, increased sediment deposition, and vertical tectonic...
Poster
Full-text available
The main objective of this project is to produce a continuous new paleo-environmental record in decadal resolution for the Levantine coast complementing previously published environmental archives from the deep sea and eastern parts of the Mediterranean. The project will be conducted along the Carmel coast of Israel - the critical narrow connector...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The morphology of the Mediterranean coast reflects complex long-term relationships between nature and human societies. Natural as well as anthropogenic induced coastal changes have been studied in previous research in this region however, investigations that combine both altering variables are rare. In this ongoing research, the coastal morphogenes...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of the Tel Dor joint Sea and Land Project is to reassess and expand understanding of the maritime interface of Iron Age Dor. During 2016 and 2017 five features excavated under water provided new data about the development and chronology of this interface. The results support a revised dating and interpretation of previously excavated struct...
Article
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Tel Dor overlooks the eastern Mediterranean on the southern Levantine coastline of Israel. Underwater surveys and a coastal excavation in the North Bay of Dor have produced evidence of an anchorage at the 4th–7th century CE Byzantine city of Dora. The existence of such an anchorage at the northwestern extremity of the city had been contemplated in...
Article
MARITIME ACTIVITY AND THE ODYSSEY - (J.P.) Emanuel Black Ships and Sea Raiders. The Late Bronze and Early Iron Age Context of Odysseus’ Second Cretan Lie. Pp. viii + 219, ills. Lanham, Boulder, New York and London: Lexington Books, 2017. Cased, £65, US$95. ISBN: 978-1-4985-7221-7. - Volume 69 Issue 2 - Assaf Yasur-Landau
Presentation
Full-text available
The wide collapse of Mediterranean systems during the 12th century BCE required societies to re-invent themselves, adopting new, and sometimes not so new, survival strategies. By combining underwater and terrestrial archaeology, we chart the coastal and maritime adaptation of communities along the Carmel coast to new social, political and economic...
Book
The volume offers a comprehensive introduction to the archaeology of the southern Levant (modern day Israel, Palestine and Jordan) from the Paleolithic period to the Islamic era, presenting the past with chronological changes from hunter-gatherers to empires. Written by an international team of scholars in the fields of archaeology, epigraphy, and...
Book
The volume offers a comprehensive introduction to the archaeology of the southern Levant (modern day Israel, Palestine and Jordan) from the Paleolithic period to the Islamic era, presenting the past with chronological changes from hunter-gatherers to empires. Written by an international team of scholars in the fields of archaeology, epigraphy, and...
Chapter
Ports and coastal settlements can be seen as liminal zones and as loci of complex intercultural interactions, both economic and social, which can all be detected potentially in the archaeological record. For communities occupying these zones, fragility did not stop at the common risks of life in the eastern Mediterranean, such as draught, short- an...
Chapter
portrait of the city as reflected through the social and economic services provided in itmay cast a shadowover the joys of urbanization. The image of a city with crowded people within its walls, who have limited or no access to services provided by the public structures, does not reflect an effort of the ruling elite to bring the fruits and benefit...
Chapter
The Social Archaeology of the Levant - edited by Assaf Yasur-Landau December 2018
Chapter
The Social Archaeology of the Levant - edited by Assaf Yasur-Landau December 2018
Chapter
Full-text available
The Social Archaeology of the Levant - edited by Assaf Yasur-Landau December 2018
Chapter
The Social Archaeology of the Levant - edited by Assaf Yasur-Landau December 2018
Chapter
An archaeology of the refugee crisis could help us recognize what these displaced people value when they are forced to leave their homes, what they look for and need during their arduous journeys, and how they arrange their lives when thrust into the unfamiliar (and usually under-resourced) conditions in a foreign place. Archaeologicalinventories,...
Article
A study of pithoi production technology at the Middle Bronze Age Canaanite palace at Tel Kabri, Israel, utilized experimental and analytical methods. Pithoi from two phases of the palace were produced using local alluvial raw material, by coil/slab technique, and finished on a slow wheel. Firing at c. 600°C for a short duration seems to be related...
Article
Full-text available
The invitation to this workshop on the 'archaeology of forced movement' presented a thorny question, connecting the lessons learned from present-day undocumented forced migration and its materiality to those gleaned from the study of past behaviour, mostly relating to the crisis at the end of the Late Bronze Age. Currently, the vast majority of stu...
Article
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During the 1963 excavation season at Tel Achziv, directed by M.W. Prausnitz, three cist tombs were unearthed in Area E, on the eastern part of the mound. These tombs, built of large roughly-hewn stone blocks, previously dated to the Iron Age IB, display a rich material culture, consisting of pottery vessels, weapons, jewellery and other small finds...
Article
An organic binder was identified in the painted fragments from the Canaanite palace of Tel Kabri, Israel. Recently dated to the late 18th C. B.C.E. by 14C, Tel Kabri is the most ancient of the Eastern Mediterranean sites in which Aegean style paintings have been found. The application of pigments was suspected to be using an organic binding medium,...
Article
An organic binder was identified in the painted fragments from the Canaanite palace of Tel Kabri, Israel. Recently dated to the late 18th C. B.C.E. by 14C, Tel Kabri is the most ancient of the Eastern Mediterranean sites in which Aegean style paintings have been found. The application of pigments was suspected to be using an organic binding medium,...
Poster
Full-text available
This poster provides a detailed holistic study of sediments from the southern hinterland of Caesarea, Israel in order to explore the impact of an urban settlement on its periphery.
Article
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This report presents the architecture of the storage rooms found during the 2013 and 2015 excavations within the Middle Bronze Age Canaanite palace at Tel Kabri in present-day Israel, as well as the ceramic finds within them, and the initial results of the petrographic and organic residue analyses. We hope that this detailed preliminary report can...
Presentation
Full-text available
The 2016 and 2017 underwater excavation seasons, part of the Dor Joint Land and Sea Expedition, have produced new data which challenges our current understanding of the maritime interface of Iron Age Dor. The massive, ashlar-built coastal walls at the southern edge of the tell previously interpreted as quays were found to be land structures. These...
Poster
Full-text available
Underwater photogrammetry was conducted using Structure from Motion (SfM). This method receives a sequence of 2D images and calculates relative motion between camera positions and 3D scene structure. These are reconstructed in an arbitrary scale, therefore, to get real scale of the scene, it has to contain at least one object with a known size. Per...
Poster
Full-text available
Archaeological field work has advanced in the application of remote sensing and GIS methodologies to enhance site-wide data collection efficiency and analytical data integrity. With these accumulating data types at different scales, it is critical to begin contextualizing data sets with one another and within the environment which they were collect...
Article
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The engineering marvel of Sebastos, or Portus Augusti as it was called in Late Antiquity (284–638 CE), dominated Caesarea’s harbor center along modern Israel’s central coast but it was only one part of a larger maritime complex. The Southern Anchorage provides a case study as one portion of the Caesarea complex, as well as a node within the regiona...
Article
This study investigated technological aspects of newly discovered painted plaster fragments from the 2008–2011 excavation seasons at Tel Kabri, Israel. Kabri is one of only four Eastern Mediterranean sites with such Aegean-style paintings. The purpose of this technical study was to characterize the painting, discuss the technique, and identify the...
Article
The south bay of Tel Dor was examined during a detailed underwater archaeological expedition and through an onland, coastal Frequency Domain Electromagnetic (FDEM) geophysical survey. The aim was to find out if the bay situated adjacent to the southern edge of the tel, was used for maritime activity when the tel was inhabited. Results indicate that...
Article
Modern archaeology in the Near East has paid little attention to construction materials and techniques of monumental architecture within the forming cities of the Bronze Age. We present here a study of plastered surfaces in a Middle Bronze Age palace located at Tel Kabri, a Canaanite polity in the southern Levant that was connected to the Aegean wo...
Article
Full-text available
Understanding the socio-economic importance of temples and palaces requires, in addition to an examination of their architecture, a study of the activities conducted within them. In this paper we carry out an inter-and intra-site comparison of patterns of pottery consumption in Canaanite palaces and temples during the Middle and Late Bronze Ages, i...
Presentation
Full-text available
This paper presents new and unpublished coastal and underwater Bronze Age assemblages from Tel Dor. We focus on finds originating from two areas: the well-built ashlar stone walls at the south bay, currently partially submerged under the sea and interpreted by Avner Raban as Late Bronze and Iron Age quays; and the massive walls in the “Love Bay” in...
Article
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By assessing the archaeological corpus of Moshe Prausnitz's 1963 and 1964 excavations at Tel Achziv, the article reevaluates aspects of the chronology and nature of the Phoenician expansion to the area south of the Ladder of Tyre (Rosh Haniqra). The authors present the Iron IIC stratigraphical sequence of Area D, the main excavation, as well as an...
Article
This article presents new radiocarbon evidence from the Middle Bronze Age palatial site of Tel Kabri (Israel). The final phase of the palace (Phase III) can be dated to Middle Bronze Age II, with an end date around the transition from Middle Bronze II to III or very early in Middle Bronze III. According to our 14 C data, the end of Tel Kabri Phase...
Article
The article explores patterns of pottery usage in Middle Bronze Age palaces in Israel, examining mainly aspects of feasting and storage. Middle Bronze palatial assemblages are typologically similar to assemblages from contemporaneous domestic contexts. Prestige vessels are rare and can usually be associated with banqueting. Vessel-type ratios in as...
Article
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Here we explore aspects of Canaanite palatial economy through an analysis of finds from the Middle Bronze Age palace at Tel Kabri, a 34 ha site located in the western Galilee of modern day Israel. The palace was founded in the middle part of the MBA I period, and continued without interruption until an advanced part of the MBA II period. Despite th...
Presentation
Full-text available
Much is known about the ports of Caesarea in the Roman and Byzantine period; much less is knows about the port of Dor, located a mere 15 km north of Caesarea, and 21 km south of Haifa. The written sources paint an intricate and ambivalent picture. Eusebius, Bishop of the nearby Caesarea, writes in the early 4th century CE Onomastikon of "Dora near...
Article
The find of an early Mycenaean tholos tomb at Vapheio (Tsountas 1889) brought to light two unusual objects: a seal showing a person in long robes holding a fenestrated ax, and the Vapheio ax, the latter a unique and heavy fenestrated ax with no parallels in the Aegean to date. Scholars from Evans to Maran have argued for a non-Aegean, Levantine ori...
Article
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Scholars have for generations recognized the importance of wine production, distribution, and consumption in relation to second millennium BC palatial complexes in the Mediterranean and Near East. However, direct archaeological evidence has rarely been offered, despite the prominence of ancient viticulture in administrative clay tablets, visual med...
Article
A zooarchaeological investigation of elite precincts from two major Middle Bronze Age sites in the Galilee region of northern Israel, Tel Hazor and Tel Kabri, was conducted with the aim of revealing differences in the animal economy between them. The results indicate that the elites of the polity of Hazor were strict consumers who exerted economic...
Article
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This article identifies a Cypriot krater found at Azekah in 2012 as a White Slip II type 2 krater, a very rare import to the Levant. Its rarity may be explained not only by the fact that such kraters were not mass-produced vessels intended for export like the WSII bowls, but also by their shape, which would look unfamiliar and strange to the Canaan...
Article
The ‘Dor 2006’ shipwreck was discovered in 2006 south of the Dor/Tantura lagoon, Israel. The hull remains are of a large ship that was unable to enter the shallow anchorage. Among the finds were 20 ceramic items, including bowls, cooking–pots, jugs, a juglet, lids and amphoras. The cargo has not yet been found. Pottery typology, coins and 14C tests...