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5 ancient wrecks full of amphorae found!

Archaeologists working in the waters of the Aegean Sea, near the tiny island of Levitha, located between the islands of Amorgos and Leros, have found a real treasure! They managed to discover 5 ancient shipwrecks, stuffed to the brim with amphorae. Anchors and other objects from the sunken vessels were also found on the site.
Published: August 7, 2019 - 11:15
Updated: July 22, 2023 - 18:30
5 ancient wrecks full of amphorae found!

Archaeologists working in the waters of the Aegean Sea, near the tiny island of Levitha, located between the islands of Amorgos and Leros, have found a real treasure! They managed to discover 5 ancient shipwrecks, stuffed to the brim with amphorae. Anchors and other objects from the sunken vessels were also found on the site.

The origin of the 5 wrecks carrying a large cargo of amphorae was determined to be the 3rd century BC. The vessels found at the site come from the Aegean region, Phoenicia and Carthage. The cargo consists mainly of amphorae of the conical or pseudo-cone type, dating from the 2nd to 1st century BC. However, among the artefacts found, a particularly interesting one is a granite-type anchor, which was lifted from a depth of 45 metres and weighs 400 kg!

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The anchor dates back to the 6th century BC and is the largest stone-type anchor ever found in the waters of the Aegean Sea. Based on this discovery, scientists surmise that the vessel using such a large anchor must have been of colossal size.

The results of the Ephorate of Underwater Antiquities archaeological survey on the island of Levitha, took place from 15-29 June, under the direction of Dr George Koutsouflakis. However, this is not the end of the story! The research project for this site, has been spread over the next three years (2019-2021). The aim is to identify and produce detailed documentation of ancient shipwrecks in the coastal zone of this cluster of islands, which appear to have played a key role in ancient and modern shipping.

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The surveys this year were mainly confined to the southern and western coasts of the island. A total of 57 dives were made, during which 92 hours were worked underwater. This allowed the exploration of approximately 30% of the island’s coastline. Eventually, traces of eight wrecks were found, dating mainly from the Hellenistic and Roman periods. In addition to the wrecks, many artefacts were found, mainly ceramics and anchors, which document the continued use of this seaway from the archaic period to the Ottoman period.

Crucial to the successful outcome of the research was the use of extensive information collected by the Ephorate of Old Antiquities from local fishing communities. The research was funded by the Department for Culture and Sport and the British Academy of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Source: radiolasithi.gr
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About author

Tomasz Andrukajtis
Editor-in-chief of the DIVERS24 portal and magazine. Responsible for obtaining, translating and developing content. He also supervises all publications. Achived his first diving certification – P1 CMAS, in 2000. Has a degree in journalism and social communication. In the diving industry since 2008.
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