This lecture is based on the research results of the dissertation I submitted: “Spatial Analysis of Urban Sites in the Iron Age II in the Land of Israel”, supervised by Professors Ze’ev Herzog and Yuval Portugali of the Tel Aviv University. In my work I examine a variety of theoretical, methodological and empirical aspects at a number of large sites that reflect the condition of the Kingdoms of Israel and Judah in the 8th century BCE through the use of Intra-site Spatial Analysis and Inter Site Spatial Analysis. [1]
In the first part of the lecture I will present the results of the intra-site analysis of three large settlements that were excavated in the first half of the 20th century which are mainly characterized by the extensive exposure of architectural finds. These sites include Megiddo (the reports by Lamon and Shipton 1939, Loud 1948, Finkelstein, Ussishkin and Halpern 2000), Tell Bet Mirsim (the reports by Albright 1932, 1938, 1943) and Tell en-Nasbeh (McCown 1947, Wampler 1948).
The re-working of the excavation results at these sites was done by dividing the finds according to their mobility as an extension of Rapoport’s proposal (1989:12):
  1. Set components = architecture
  2. Set and semi-set components = installations, streets and parts of interior and exterior furniture
  3. Components that are not set in place = small finds.
In the first stage of the work I re-sorted the small mobile finds according to their catalogue identification, kind of material of which they are made, their value and functional identity according to various activities. In the second stage I examined the urban plan, the kinds of construction, the installations and the functional identity of the buildings. In the third phase I correlated the mobile small finds with the permanent architectural units in order to mark out regions of possible activity inside the built-up urban space. The activities on which I chose to focus consist of seven main topics: food preparation, its storage and consumption, administrative and economic activity, the use of personal effects and cosmetics, the use of cult objects and figurative art, industrial production (textiles/ceramics/vessel production/ processing of agricultural products), use of weapons and/or tools and the use of musical instruments. These topics were drawn from anthropological comparisons of traditional societies (e.g. Daviau 1993 and Kent 1989).
The identification of the activity regions was done by correlating the set components, installations and mobile components. For example: administrative activity was identified with a very high degree of certainty in those instances where administrative objects (such as seals and scarabs) were found inside monumental buildings that are characterized by their style, size and unusual architectural elements; these were correlated with nearby functional installations that attest to centralized control (such as silos and storehouses).
At the end of the discussion of each separate site three main questions are asked: One – what is the extent of the correlation between the functional identities of the buildings and the kind of finds that were discovered in them? Two – can we point to the existence of a social stratum based on the distribution of the valuable objects? And the last question – what can be concluded from the spatial analysis, about the preservation conditions of the finds and the manner in which they were documented in the excavation reports.
In the second part of the lecture I will show how it is possible to use the methodology of inter-site analysis in order to examine the hierarchy of these sites in the overall fabric of the settlements in Israel and Judah in the 8th century BCE and in relation to the potential reciprocal ties of their two capitals.
Selected Bibiliography:
Daviau, M.M., 1993. Houses and their Furnishings in Bronze Age Palestine: Domestic Activity Area and Artifact Distribution in the Middle and Late Bronze Ages. Sheffield.
Rapoport, A. 1989. Systems of Activities and Systems of Settings. In: Kent S. (ed.), Domestic Architecture and the Use of Space. Cambridge: 9-20.

[1] Among the programs I used in my work are: Microsoft data processing programs – Excel and Access, Autocad to graphically re-work the excavation plans and GIS – Geographic Information System by MapInfo.