Michael C. Luddeni

WICKED WALLS. During the Middle Bronze Age, Tall el-Hammam was protected by an imposing rampart fortification system that greatly enhanced the already substantial defensive wall that surrounded the site during the Early Bronze Age. Excavations across the site and near the city’s main gate revealed a sloped earthen rampart system constructed with millions of mudbricks (labeled above as A) built against the earlier stone city wall (B), producing fortifications that measured more than 100 feet thick. Positioned at regular intervals along the rampart were large square towers that likely stood to a height of 50 feet or more. Two of these towers (including the one labeled C) flanked the multi-storied gatehouse of the city’s main entrance, thereby creating a monumental gateway and spacious exterior plaza that brings to mind the gate where Lot is said to have first greeted his angelic visitors (Genesis 19:1).