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Ortal Harush

Ortal Harush


M.A. thesis topic: Regional, Chronological, Typological and Technological Aspects of 'Hippo' Jars from North Israel in the Iron Age IIa.

Advisors: Prof. Amihai Mazar (Institute of Archaeology), Prof. Uzy Smilansky (Weizmann Institute of Science).

The ceramics of the Iron Age reflect a rich material world. A new type of jar appeared in the late tenth or early ninth century B.C.E, which was first characterized in the Chicago University Megiddo excavations by Lamon and Shipton, who named them 'Hippo' jars due to their large swollen bodies. This type of jar is found only in the northern Israelite Kingdom and their main distribution was in Beth-Shea'n valley (especially in Beth-Shea'n, Tel Rehov, Tel el-Hammah and Tel Amal), in Jezreel valley (Tel Megiddo) and in the Western Galilee (Hurbat Rosh Zayit).
My thesis will examine 'Hippo' jars from six sites: Tel Beth-Shea'n, Tel Rehov, Tel el-Hammah, Tel Amal, Tel Megiddo and Hurbat Rosh Zayit. The study will examine the regional, chronological, typological and technological aspects of the 'Hippo' jars by carrying out petrographic analysis and typological research, using the 3D camera scanner and associated computerized morphological analysis. The goal of the study is to establish whether production of the Hippo jars was centralized and standardized, and to place the conclusion in its regional, historical and socio-economic context.


  • Masada Textiles Project 2007-2008
  • Tel Hazor - staff member at excavation seasons 2008-2010.
  • Tel Rehov - staff member at excavation season 2010 and participant in publication staff since 2010.
  • The Computerized Archaeology laboratory - research staff since 2010.

Research Interests:

  • The Iron Age in the Levant
  • Technology and typology of ancient pottery
  • The relationship between archaeology and the biblical text.

List of Publications