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He dug from 1930 to 1936 and promptly published his findings in a series of preliminary reports. He also excavated a residential area on the southeast slope of the mound which he believed was part of the city fortified by the double wall.Although the Second World War prevented Garstang from publishing a final report on his work, after the war, in collaboration with his son, he published a popular account that summarized his final views on Jericho. He designated this "City IV." It had been thoroughly destroyed in a violent conflagration.Garstang excavated a collapsed double city wall on the summit of the tell that he dated to the late-15th to early 14th-century B. Garstang concluded that City IV came to an end about 1400 B. E., based on pottery found in the destruction debris, on scarabs recovered from nearby tombs and on the absence of Mycenaean ware.
The site’s excellent water supply and favorable climate (especially in winter) have made it a desirable place to live from the very beginning of settled habitation.Jericho is doubly unique: With its Neolithic settlement dating to 8000 B. E., Jericho lays claim to being the world’s oldest city; located 670 feet below sea level in the great rift valley, it is the world’s lowest city as well.Jericho’s abundant water supply, favorable climate and geographic location made it a key site in ancient Canaan.In the 1930s, British archaeologist John Garstang excavated a residential area, marked "A," just west of the perennial spring that supplied the city’s water and which now fills the modern reservoir. Kathleen Kenyon, Garstang’s successor at Jericho, excavated the area marked "B," Her conclusions dated Jericho’s destruction to about 1550 B. By the time the Israelites appeared on the scene, she argued, there was no walled city at Jericho.(A significant portion of the tell was destroyed to make way for the modern road.) Signs of a fiery destruction and his dating of the remains led Garstang to conclude that the Israelites had indeed put the city to the torch about 1400 B. Garstang was the first investigator to use modern methods at the site, although his work was still crude by today’s standards.The site has been excavated several times in this century.Based on the conclusion of the most recent excavator, British archaeologist Kathleen Kenyon, most historians and Bible scholars would answer with a resounding "No, certainly not!Anyone who wished to conquer the central hill country from the east, as the Bible describes Joshua and the Israelites doing, would first need to secure Jericho. E, conquest would match the chronology derived from the Bible.Archaeologists have long debated whether the Israelites in fact conquered Jericho. and there was no walled city at Tell es-Sultan for Joshua to conquer. when it was destroyed in a conquest strikingly similar to the Biblical account. However, it is about 150 to 200 years earlier than the time most scholars believe the Israelites were to be found as a people living in Canaan.A Neolithic settlement at the site goes back to about 8000 B. E.,* thus giving Jericho the distinction of being the world’s oldest city.At 670 feet below sea level, it is also the lowest city in the world. From Jericho one has access to the heartland of Canaan.