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The Byzantine church – The center of the Byzantine monastery was the
church, which is well preserved. Pass through the narthex, with its white
mosaic, and continue to the nave. The floor here was originally paved with
mosaic and its walls were decorated with a design created from pottery
sherds inserted in plaster. The room’s semicircular apse is preserved to its
original height; glass from its window was found in the church courtyard. The
floor contains a pit, which may have served as a crypt or a reliquary. It was
dug in the ground beneath the altar, which was originally sectioned off by a
decorated marble chancel. The church was roofed with clay tiles, which were
found by the dozens during excavation. Plastered stone gutters protruded
from the roof of the church and were attached to its outer walls. The western
room of the church contains a mosaic depicting floral designs and
medallions encircling fruit and baskets of communion bread. A low stone
wall surrounded the church courtyard, where a number of farming
installations were discovered.
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