SPATIAL ASPECTS OF THE URBAN DEVELOPMENT OF PALESTINE DURING THE MIDDLE BRONZE AGE (ISRAEL).
AuthorKOTTER, WADE RALPH.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractDuring the Middle Bronze II B-C period (1800-1500 B.C.) Palestine underwent an unprecedented period of urban development. This urban development had several spatial consequences, which may be divided into three categories: (1) Spatial relationships between urban settlements and features of the local and regional environment, (2) Spatial patterns in the internal organization of urban settlements, and (3) Spatial patterns in the distribution of urban and rural settlements across the landscape. These three categories form the basis of this dissertation. With respect to the relationship between urban settlements and environmental features, it is demonstrated that urban settlements are associated with productive agricultural land, ample natural water sources, and natural routes of travel. They are also found only in regions where rainfall is sufficient for successful dry farming. The internal spatial organization of Middle Bronze urban settlements is found to be characterized by both agglomeration and centrality. Zones of land-use related to various urban functions are identified, and the similarity of these cities to other pre-industrial cities is demonstrated. Examination of the distribution of urban settlements across the land-scape suggests that these cities were not integrated into a regional urban system, but rather were independent city-states, each with its own supporting region. An examination of rural settlements within the hypothetical supporting region of each urban center supports this conclusion, although the inadequacies of survey within each of these regions preclude definitive conclusions.