Mu'arrash Ba'ra - Monastery (?)

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Source of knowledge
Archaeological remains
Surveyed site
Conder and Kitchener
Samaria and Judea Staff Officer
Magen suggested that the site was a monastery built in the remains of a fourth century Roman fortress in the manner of other forts and towers in the Hebron and southern and western Samaria areas (Magen and Kagan 2012 II:168, no. 267). All the elements noted in the survey, i.e. the closed compound, towers, courtyards and complex of rooms suggest that the site served as a monastery. Winepresses and a columbarium cave found nearby and the oil press found in the compound, testify to the agricultural nature of the site. The compound and incorporation of a Late Roman fort into a cohesive complex has parallels in the monasteries of the Hebron hill area. A church is not mentioned in the finds of the survey, its absence and the absence of any remains indicating its existence does not allow a difinitive identification of the complex as a monastery. A cross carved into a lintel confirms that the site was a Christian one.
State of certainty: 
Uncertain / Questionable
Architectural evolution
General outline: 
Based on the existence of the towers, the site was apparently a Late Roman fortress. If this was a monastery it consisted of a walled complex with the two towers and agricultral installations.
Dating material: 

Possibly late fifth to sixth century, based on parallels in the area (Kh. Ed-Duweir, Qasr Khalife, Kh. El Qasr).

Phase date
5th-6th c.
Phase date
Post Arab conquest history: 
Post conquest history comments: 
An oil press was established at the site in the Early Islamic period.