Jericho - Tell es Sultan
The site of Teli es-Sultan and, more extensively, the Jericho Oasis have attracted pilgrims and travelers since antiquity as one of the major holy places in Palestine and the seat of a flourishing Christian community of Gentile lineage since the first century C.E. It was mentioned by the Pilgrim of Bordeaux in 333 C.E. as well as by the pilgrims Egeria (381-384 C.E.), Paula (a noble Roman woman, 404 C.E.), the arehdeacon Theodo¬sius (530 C.E.), and the Anonymous Pilgrim from Piacenza (570 C.E.), each of them leaving a written account of the places and the numerous churches and monasteries present in the oasis. The memory of the site was preserved also during the Middle Age, when Jericho was mostly deserted as a result of the insecurity of its surroundings. With the Islamic establishment in the area, the Jerusalem to Jericho road became one of the main routes used to make a pilgrimage to Mecca, as echoed in Arab sources. European travelers continued to visit Jericho from the seventeenth to nineteenth centuries C.E.
In 1997 the Department of Antiquities and Cultural Heritage of the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities (MOTA_DACH) of the Palestinian National Authority started a new project of exploration and reevaluation of Tell es-Sultan in cooperation with Rome "La Sapienza" University (1997-2015), mainly focusing on the Bronze Age city fortifications and residential quarters. The basic contribution of the Italian–Palestinian expedition was to put forward an overall periodization of the site, reexamining and matching the data produced by all the previous expeditions.