Journal of Mediterranean Archaeology, Vol 22, No 2 (2009)

Feasting between the Revolutions: Evidence from Chalcolithic Tel Tsaf, Israel

David Ben-Shlomo, Austin C. Hill, Yosef Garfinkel
Issued Date: 13 Jan 2010


Feasting has attracted much attention in archaeological research, both within the Near East and elsewhere in the world. Recent evidence of feasting includes occurrences in the Near East at prehistoric as well as Bronze and Iron Age sites, reflecting the diversity of types and functions of feasts. This article presents new evidence for feasting related to the intermediate protohistoric period in the southern Levant, coming from Middle Chalcolithic (late 6th millennium Cal BC) Tel Tsaf in the Jordan Valley. The evidence for feasting includes numerous large-scale cooking facilities (earth ovens) and concentrations of faunal remains. It is suggested that if social differentiation had increased during the Chalcolithic, then the provisioning of feasting at Tel Tsaf from household pig sties may have created new arenas for the negotiation of prestige and social status.

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DOI: 10.1558/jmea.v22i2.129


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