Processing campaign 2017

In May 2017, a team of the "Gadara region project" met at the excavation house in Umm Qais to work on the final publication of the excavation results. The second volume, which deals with the early and middle bronze settlement strata on the Tall Zirāʿa (strata 25-17), could be completed by Prof. Dieter Vieweger with the help of Dr. Andrea Schwermer (ceramics) during the last year. The text has been translated so that the finishing touch will follow in this campaign and, together with the new employee at BAI-Wuppertal, Luisa Goldammer, the layout could already be made for large parts. During the year, this volume will also be available online. Also the volumes three to six are well on the way.

One of the remaining works is the compilation of the extensive ceramic panels. In addition, Dr. Jutta Häser worked on the stratigraphy of Area III, Benjamin Schröder on the review of the flint finds and Katja Soennecken on the publication of the Wādī al-ʿArab Survey (for volume 8).

The team was supported by Friederike Schöpf, who will write her doctorate on the early Roman limestone vessels of Tall Zirāʿa, Hans-Martin Jakubik, who deals with other stone vessels, and Antje Cassel, who in patient work has exempted all find photos we need. For our new director at the DEI-Amman, Dr. Katharina Schmidt, this was the first campaign in Umm Qais. She is planning an excavation campaign at Area II of Tall Zirāʿa in 2018.

Demolition at Tall Zirāʿa

After shovel excavator work had destroyed a part of the tall in 2016, this year the suburban area caterpillar works fell victim. Unfortunately, it is not possible to proceed against this demolition, as there is a private area and the Department of Antiquities are therefore bound to the hands. It remains to be hoped that the various projects on cultural property protection as well as various programmes that try to raise awareness of cultural goods in the local population will lead to sensitization.


On May 25, the team was visited by the Israeli colleagues Prof. Amihai Mazar, Dr. Nava Panitz-Cohen and Dr. Naama Yahalom-Mack, who looked at the excavation and the finds for a day. First considerations for cooperation have been made.

Status of information: 2017

Project Partners

Biblical Archaeological Institute Wuppertal   (BAI
German Protestant Institute of Archaeology (GPIA)

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His Royal Highness Prince El Hassan bin Talal  took up the patronage of this project as a representative of the royal house.

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Friends and Donors

  • Förderverein DEI
  • Universität Wuppertal
  • Kirchliche Hochschule Wuppertal

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We cooperate closely with many universities, institutes and companies.

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