Unit Book J2

General Introduction

Preface to Unit J2

Caitlin Chaves Yates – August 2010

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J2 at a glance

J2 is an excavation unit in the area of the interface between the Plaza and the temple terrace. The area was chosen for excavation based on the known presence of a monumental staircase and the revetment wall. The excavations targeted the Plaza level associated with the base of the apron and the staircase. The J2 excavations are part of a larger focus on the temple terrace area that includes the excavations of J1, J3, J4, J5, J6, and J7.

J2 excavations began in 2004 under supervision of Minna Haapenen. The stated goals were to expose the revetment wall, apron, staircase and reach the level of the plaza. Excavations only reached about halfway to the Plaza floor in 2004 and excavations continued with the same goal in 2005, again under the supervision of Minna Haapenen. In 2005 excavations exposed the complete apron and the staircase. Additionally, the excavators conducted a deep sounding at the base of the staircase which exposed several pavements.

The excavations were dormant until 2009, when excavations were continued under the supervision of Caitlin Chaves Yates. The focus of the 2009 excavations was to clarify the dating of the apron and the staircase.

See the Chronicle for a more detailed history of the excavations and the Overview for a more complete introduction.

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J2 and the Urkesh Global Record

Through continuous improvements the UGR is more complete as of publication than it was in 2004 and 2005. The original UGR was compiled simultaneously with the excavations of 2004 and 2005. Some of the programs were incomplete and there were gaps in the record. In 2007 a study season was conducted during which an extensive amount of work went into compiling and fleshing out the J2 UGR. During this season pC and sC were able to bring the UGR to a level of completeness almost equal to the more recent books. In 2009 work on the book was resumed by cJC in conjunction with the 2009 excavation. In 2010 during the August study season cJC continued work on correcting and compiling the J2 record with bS, jS and yM. The left hand side of the UGR was prepared primarily in the fall and winter of 2010 by cJC.

An overview of the Urkesh Global Record is given elsewhere.

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