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Central zone, open space to east of temple precinct (OA45) - Period 3B

Formerly referenced as being part of OA21 through Periods 2B and 3A, the imposition of a clear physical and functional division into two of the wider land entity defined by Roads 2, 3 and 4 necessitates separate referencing when describing Period 3B development and change (Figure 78). Open Area 45 is that part of former OA21 east of the temple complex and its newly created precinct frontage wall (S39).

Period 3A summary view | Period 3B summary view | Open areas (lower terrace) | Open areas (upper terrace)

Silt layers (Group 402)

As described in 'Central zone, temple precinct (OA23)' the layers of silt that lie across parts of the eastern side of the OA23 precinct extend eastwards beyond it into OA45. It is uncertain whether the artefact-free silts represent occupation build-up or a deliberate make-up layer for the new gravel surface (21591, 21631, 21962 Group 402). As in the temple precinct, there appears to be at least three episodes of surfacing in places and it is extremely likely that the open area in front of the temple has an associated function that required upkeep.

Where the interior of OA45 is investigated further east, in Excavation Areas L and M, no remains of Period 3B date are encountered. This apparent lack of intruding features, together with the continued resurfacing at least of the western part of its interior, suggests that the whole of the area delimited by Roads/tracks 3 and 4 continues to be maintained as an open space in front of the temple - even after the imposition of the screening precinct wall (S39).


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