First Evidence of Trade in Galilean Salted Fish on the Carmel Coast in the Early Islamic Period

Sierra Harding, Omri Lernau, Wim Wouters, Nimrod Marom, Deborah Cvikel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The production and maritime trade of salted-fish products are well documented in the western Mediterranean during the Classical and Roman periods. Ichthyological remains found within amphorae in shipwrecks and other archaeological contexts provide evidence for long-distance exchange based on the biogeographical distributions of fish species. The Ma'agan Mikhael B shipwreck (mid-seventh to mid-eighth century ad) found on the Carmel coast of Israel held three Late Roman amphorae which contained the remains of small fish. The identified species suggest a previously unknown fish-salting operation at the Sea of Galilee during the early Islamic period. The evidence also points to a distribution or trade centre for salted fish at Caesarea-Maritima after the transition to Islamic rule in the eastern Mediterranean. The results of this study demonstrate the value of archaeozoological methods applied to maritime archaeological contexts, attesting to production and trade activities that left few traces in the archaeological record of antiquity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)320-340
Number of pages21
JournalEuropean Journal of Archaeology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 20 Aug 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Author(s). Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of the European Association of Archaeologists.


  • Ma'agan Mikhael B
  • allec
  • garum
  • salsamenta
  • shipwreck
  • southern Levant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Archaeology
  • Archaeology


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