Yavneh-Yam believed to be stronghold of Islamic power

The harbor at Yavneh-Yam in Israel has been an important port since the Roman era, but now researchers think it was also "one of the final strongholds of Early Islamic power in the region."

Archaeologists base their opinions partly on the discovery of a bath house of Roman design which was maintained by the Arabs until the 12th century. "This is an outstanding and rare find," said Prof. Moshe Fischer of TAU's Department of Archaeology and Near Eastern Cultures and head of the Yavneh-Yam dig, about the Roman baths. The baths were "heated by hot air circulating between double floors and pipes along the walls. The crusaders did not build these types of baths, and after the end of the Early Islamic period, they disappear altogether."