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A Tale Of Two Houses: The Role Of Pottery In Reconstructing Household Wealth And Composition

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Chapter Summary

The opportunity to examine the complete contents of a building, preserved as is on the day of its sudden and violent destruction, is not particularly common in archaeological excavations, where successive occupation is generally uneventful and entails the periodic partial or complete depletion of the contents. The two later houses - Building 475 of late LBIB and Building 315 of LBIIA - were found complete with rich assemblages of restorable pottery and other finds. The identification of a dwelling as a "patrician house" belonging to a family of wealth is most often based on the overall dimensions of the building and the quality of its construction, as well as the large number and variety of vessels and other items found in it. Additional criteria for assessing household wealth are the number of vessels, and, less so, their quality.

Keywords: household composition; household wealth



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