A16 use areas

Typology of the built environment in unit A16

Use areas

June 2012 - L. Crescioli

Synopsis
Discussion
Courtyard
Open area with pits and burials
Dumping area
Necropolis
Other rooms

Synopsis

Courtyard Palace Courtyard v136
Open area with pits and burials The open space, where after the collapse of Royal Palace many burials were excavated v118
Dumping area The same open space, that afterwards became a large dump area v144
Necropolis Several built-up graves and other rooms v46
Street and room a8 A small street and an open area related to an house. v45b

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Discussion

     Many of these "use areas" can be identified architecturally, by the presence of structures or installations and by their relationships. I wanted to add and analyse them here, to show the meaning the same area had during different periods.

Courtyard
     The palace courtyard is defined by two (southern and western) perimeter walls. The northern and eastern boundaries have not been found yet. On the southern side a doorway with a big threshold leading to the courtyard. The beautiful stone pavement was found completely clean, so since just a small portion of it (probably about a quarter) was excavated it is difficult to suppose the activities carried out in it, and the possible circulation of people.
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Open area with pits and burials
     After the collapse of the palace, in the area, during phase 4 many pit burials were excavated. Some of them are jar (child) burials, other are simple burials with adult skeletons in fetal position. No pattern in the burials' location was identified, burials are excavated together with simple trash pits. The area was probably marginal and at the same time close to the period's settlement
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Dumping area
     The same open area on top of the collapsed courtyard at the beginning of Khabur period become a large dumping area for the craft activities of the settlement. A lot of ash produced by some kilns was dumped here. For some reasons the perception of the area changed, no longer pits and burials, but a lot of trash covering the area.
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Necropolis
     During Late Khabur period the area was interested by a deep change in use and perception. A sort of "Dead City" was built, including several built-up graves. In A16 probably only the edge of this area was found, because to the South we see only houses and working areas. The graves are usually free standing, built as small houses (without foundations) and open areas are all around them, probably people were able to freely walk between the tombs.
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Other rooms
     Some structures are instead interpreted as rooms or houses, on the base of the lack of elements showing funerary elements, or on the presence of specific domestic traits. Unfortunately the exposed area is not extended and some structures are not fully excavated. a8 is an open area with two tannurs, enclosed by some shallow pisŤ walls, in front of another partially excavated structure a10. In front of the area a house a3 flanked by a pebble street. So the organization of the area seems complex and only a careful analysis could shed light on the whole question.
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