Talk abstract details

Aspects on the Orientation of the Bronze Age Public Buildings at Megiddo
Gerasimos Artelaris, Ioannis Liritzis


Megiddo is one of the most important Bronze Age sites in the Levant, as it was almost continuously inhabited throughout the entire period (3500-1150 BC). The importance of its position is evident in the presence of Egyptian, Syrian and especially a great amount of Mycenaean finds. At the eastern area of the mound a series of public buildings identified by the excavators as temples was discovered. They cover the biggest part of the Bronze Age and provide an excellent opportunity for studying the development and changes in sacred architecture in Southern Levant. The possibility of solar and lunar alignments is investigated, as well as the alignment of the entrances or corners to the cardinal points (in relation to Egyptian and Mesopotamian temples respectively). Additionally, some suggestions about possible stellar alignments are made. The results are compared to the orientation of contemporary public buildings in the Levant in order to identify any common and possibly deliberate alignments. The orientations of the public buildings were initially calculated using excavation plans, topographic maps and Google Earth (for horizon simulation). Wherever possible, they were corrected by field measurements. An evaluation of the accuracy of the data collected from maps in comparison to the field measurements will be presented.