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Iron Age beehives at Tel Reḥov in the Jordan valley

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 January 2015

Amihai Mazar
The Institute of Archaeology, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel
Dvory Namdar
Kimmel Center for Archaeological Science, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot 76100, Israel Department of Archaeology and Ancient Near Eastern Cultures, Tel Aviv University, Ramat Aviv 69978, Israel
Nava Panitz-Cohen
The Institute of Archaeology, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel
Ronny Neumann
Department of Organic Chemistry, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot 76100, Israel
Steve Weiner
Department of Structural Biology and Kimmel Center for Archaeological Science, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot 76100, Israel


Beehives were discovered in a densley built area in the Iron Age city of Reḥov (tenth-ninth century BC). They consisted of hollow clay cylinders, each with a little hole at one end (for the bee) and a removable lid at the other (for the bee keeper). These beehives, the earliest found in the Near East, were identified by analogy with examples pictured on Egyptian tombs and in use by traditional peoples. The suggested identification was confirmed by chemical analysis.

Research Article
Copyright © Antiquity Publications Ltd 2008

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