As the second week drew to a close, the students and staff at PNRP were delighted to reflect on the progress they had made. Having finally recovered from the various illnesses that plagued the start of the summer, team members made significant strides during the second week. Area C continues to develop, revealing further walls and floors. Trench Supervisors Maggie, Cassie, and Jordan all removed over a meter of dirt from their respective trenches. As most of their loci are tumble layers, this often involves the removal of large, heavy stones.
In Area B, the tomb teams (under the direction of Nicki, Kelsey, Alex, and Eva) have mostly removed the fill and disturbance layers in B.5 and B.6 and are not working directly with the articulated and commingled remains. B.7 and B.8 have also removed a significant amount of material. B.8 in particular contains much later ceramic material than the other tombs, suggesting a possible Early Byzantine occupation or use as a dump site.
In Area D, the Nabataean / Roman city wall (early 2nd century AD) continues to be articulated in trenches D.1 and D.2 while the possible Byzantine wall is explored in D.3. Trench supervisor Sophie Tews was shocked to discover human remains in her trench – D.1 – especially as it does not seem to contain an architectural feature. D.2 trench supervisor Alex Zarley appears to have more architectural features – possibly domestic in nature – which included donkey skeletal remains. D.3 continues to be a mystery, with Area supervisor Russell Gentry and trench supervisor Ashley Jones attempting to puzzle out the multiple intersecting architectural features, only one of which appears to be the expected Byzantine city wall.
Finally, PNRP architect Anna Henderick continues to draw the city wall between trenches D.1/D.2 and D.3, hoped to be completed by the end of the season.