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Archaeological campaigns

Both the campaigns of 2013 concerned the archaeological investigation at Salut and at the Bronze Age Tower. Architectural restoration has also carried out on both sites.
At Salut, the excavation  focused on the top part of the site with the aim to conclude the investigation of that area and restore it for future presentation to the public. The upper part of Salut (Area 1), where the researches are focused since the first campaign in 2005, needed some more study to complete the excavations carried out in the previous campaigns. In particular the mud-bricks platform has now been completely exposed and all the Islamic features, that partly obliterated it, have been excavated. Two trenches were dig in the platform to complete the information about the construction technique. The work included also the continuation of the excavation on the western side of the external wall: here collected the data clarified the building technique. More, the finding of BMSW (Brown Maroon Slipped Ware) sherds helped us to attribute part of the construction of the external wall to the Late Iron Age period. The completion of the archaeological investigations in the west area has also enabled the beginning of the restoration work. The reconstruction technique, already used, that involved the adhibition of mud, has also been applied for the reconstruction of the mud-bricks platform. Some walls located in that area have been made safe and restored as M26 and M4.  
The sixth campaign of excavation at the site of the Early Bronze Age tower ST1 had two main goals. The first was the removal of the deposits previously left untouched between trenches T11 and T12, in order to completely reveal a longer stretch of the main ditch’s outer channel. This also allowed the discovery of new wall features inside the ditch, specifically of the buttress W50, and the complete revealing of wall W51, whose opposite ends had already been intercepted in trenches T11 and T12.
The second area of relevance to this campaign’s investigation was a wide and relatively low trench placed east of the tower, some 25 meters away from the main ditch. Here, a rather complex network of channels was traced, coeval with the Bronze Age occupation of the tower.
The general layout of the ditch was also further revealed, and it was possible to confirm that it runs all around the building.
The cultural assemblage retrieved during this campaign is perfectly in keeping with what already unearthed during previous campaigns, for what concerns both pottery and other finds.
At Salut, deeming that no further archaeological work is necessary in the upper part of the site, work focused on a fuller comprehension of the architectonical evolution of site. Specifically, the transition from the early to the late surrounding wall was investigated. Two deep trenches were thus open to the north and to the south of the point where the main tower abuts the upper enclosure, removing the massive deposits that were laid down against the early mudbrick walls and served as a basis for part of the later stone ones.
The walls belonging to the first architectural phase comprise a mudbrick upper part above stone foundations, and are preserved to such a height that they probably represent the most monumental structure of this kind found to date in south east Arabia. The presence of abundant Late Iron Age (Iron Age III) pottery within the deposits connected with this major re-arrangement secures their dating to this period.
At ST1, two main objectives were pursued. The first was connected with the two outer channels discovered during the previous season to the east of the tower and dated to the Bronze Age. The excavated area was here enlarged, connecting it with the main excavation area, allowing a better planning of the channels, one of which shows a roughly squared widening, possibly a cistern.
The second aim of the mission was to complete the excavation of the deposits filling the main ditch, where this is lined by the imposing wall W28. Due to heavy rains, work had to be suspended; however, some interesting features had already appeared at the bottom of the ditch, speaking of further works carried out in the past and connected with water management. Our knowledge of the main ditch layout was also improved: apart from the exposure of its whole internal side, an inlet was discovered joining the ditch on the northwestern side. This discovery is extremely important in the reconstruction of ancient water management.
Download the Salut archaeological reports SL13A and SL13B
Download the Bronze Age tower archaeological reports: ST112B-13A and ST113B
Download the Bronze Age tower technical report ST1