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Wadi Hisban: The Lower Mill - C

From the tell in Wadi Hisban, looking downstream one can see a wall projecting from the gradual slope. This is good farming land, and well-irrigated. In the past this irrigation water was also used to power flour mills, but these mills had to have a suitable head of water for their operation. To obtain this head, an aqueduct was built that projected out from the hillside.

In steep-sided valleys this aqueduct does not need to be very long at all, though the channel that brought the water may hug the slope for as much as a kilometer before arriving at the mill. In valleys like Wadi Hisban the slope is more gentle, and the lower mill in particular has a longer aqueduct, even though it is located where the slope increases abruptly.

1. The lower mill ruin 2. Kathy below the mill 3. Looking down at the aqueduct and mill 4. Looking down at the aqueduct and mill
Above: various views of the aqueduct. The walls generally deteriorate from the outside, and in this case all that survives for most of its length is the bed of the water channel. (1)
Below the mill house is a chamber (6) that shows clearly the use of water in the milling process. The walls and roof have the appearance of stalactites, due to the deposition that has occurred. The chamber is small, and shows that any water wheel did not have very large dimensions. The chute opening is clearly visible, but there seems to be another opening to the right, that may have also been a water channel. Sockets for wooden beams can be seen in all walls, and the roof.
5. Lookimg up at the millstone 6. The water chamber below the mill