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Chapter 5: Neolithic 3 Beisamun (Page 349-350)

Pre-History and Archaeology Glossary

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The extensive site of Beisamun was occupied until some time in Neolithic 3. As no pottery was found there the site was probably abandoned quite early in the 6th millennium. A few of the flints were of types found on Neolithic 3 sites in the Bekaa and at Neolithique Ancien Byblos. Most of the arrowheads were tanged and retouched by pressure-flaking and some of these were Amuq 1 and 2 types. The Amuq I type was already being made in Palestine late in Neolithic 2 as [Jean] Perrot has pointed out but the presence of both these types and other flints characteristic of Neolithic 3 must indicate that the site was occupied in the early centuries of the 6th millennium.

Arrowheads were sparsely represented in the collections from the site and sickle blades, although more numerous, still formed only 7% of the tools which were found. Almost all these were segmented and retouched across the ends but a few were backed. The most numerous tools were the axes, picks and chisels which together comprised over 51% of the total. The axes were the most numerous and varied of the heavy flaked tools. Those with straight cutting edges were rectangular or trapezoidal in outline while the curved edge ones were oval or almond-shaped; a few had polished edges. 10% of these axes had split in use on the site where their remains were found. Presumably they had been used to shape timber for the large houses at Beisamun among other tasks.

All these flint artifacts compare closely with those from the Bekaa sites I have already discussed and Neolithique Ancien Byblos confirming that Beisamun was occupied in Neolithic 3.

Several surface sites are known in the extreme north-west corner of the upper Jordan valley but no structures have been found on them ...

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