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Preliminary Findings at a Late Old Kingdom Fort in South Sinai, Including the Pottery, from the 2008 Season

Gregory Mumford, Rexine Hummel


The 2008 excavations at Ras Budran continued exposing the late Old Kingdom fort’s courtyard, finding baking installations, deep hollows filled by ash and sand, and parts of an underlying occupation layer that may reflect earlier activity at the fort (which needs further clarification). The exploration of a suggestive “chamber” in the eastern enclosure wall revealed it to be a modern disturbance. The project also concentrated on the western “bastion,” tracing it for 20 meters and finding evidence for salt encrustations and potential storm activity along the fort’s western side; one preliminary conclusion is that the sealing of the fort’s original entryway, and the subsequent abandonment and dismantling of the fort, may have been encouraged by a poor placement of the fort too close to the Red Sea and/or possibly increasingly harsher (winter) weather ca. 2300–2200 B.C. The study also contains Rexine Hummel’s analysis of the fort’s pottery fabrics, forms, and functions.


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