The tenth Tyre excavation mission took place from 2nd to 27th October 2017. In addition to archaeological investigations, it included an important architectural survey activity as well as an epigraphic study. Éveha International was represented by Xavier Husson, in charge of the topographic surveys since 2011.
Several areas, involving archaeologists, as well as architects and the topograph, were concerned by this year’s field campaign :
– surveys were continued north-east of the stepped monument (sector 2), where non-disturbed levels were densely preserved. Levels referring to Hellenistic period habitat were thus found, which is new to the site;
– two surveys were opened within the Imperial Byzantine thermal complex (sector 3). The aim was to specify the phasing of this imposing monument and the sector surrounding it. The first survey was carried out in the artisanal sector south of the baths, the other at the western corner of the thermal block, where there is an important drainage pipe, fundamental for the understanding of the hydraulic system;
– a final survey was opened at the western end of the basilica hall (sector 3) to gain information on this sector’s oldest levels (Iron Age II);
– at last, the bases of a geoarchaeological study of the south coast of the peninsula were laid, aimeing at understanding the coastlines evolution and identifying the successive port installations.
For several years, as part of the survey work, the team is being using the dense correlation digital photogrammetry technique (using Agisoft PhotoScan software). The documents thus generated constitute complementary media for recording architectural remains. This choice is justified by the density of the remains and the fact that the elevations are sometimes kept on great heights, which makes the realization of “classical” recordings rather delicate in some cases.
The last week was devoted to vectorization, geo-referencing and the finalization of the recordings used as a basis for the architectural study. These documents are also used in the monograph to be published.