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Obsidian cores – an extraordinary discovery on a 5,000-year-old shipwreck!

Published: November 28, 2023 - 16:36
Updated: November 28, 2023 - 16:36
Obsidian cores – an extraordinary discovery on a 5,000-year-old shipwreck!

Off the coast of the island of Capri, underwater archaeologists from the Superintendency of the Metropolitan Area of Naples recovered obsidian cores from the remains of a shipwreck from the Neolithic Age.

The Site

A team of divers from the Naples Police Headquarters has discovered the remains of a Neolithic-era shipwreck near the famous Blue Grotto (Grotta Azzurra) located on the island of Capri. Investigating the site, divers located obsidian cores bearing marks of processing lying on the seabed. It is worth pointing out that the mentioned grotto was the personal bathroom of the Roman Emperor Tiberius, and today it is a tourist attraction.

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Close examination of the site, which is located at a depth of about 30-40 meters (100-130ft), allowed divers to locate obsidian cores spread over the area. The excavated artifacts were transported to the Superintendency of the Metropolitan Area of Naples, where specialists will take care of their cleaning and preservation.

Police squad diver
The archaeological site is located at a depth of about 40 m, Photo: Superintendency of the Metropolitan Area of Naples

Obsidian cores

The obsidian core presented in the press materials measures approximately 28 × 20 × 15 centimeters and weighs almost 8 kilograms. Chisel marks are

Police team with obsidian cores
Police divers from Naples recovered the obsidian cores, Photo: Superintendency of the Metropolitan Area of Naples

clearly visible on its surface. Archaeologists think that such a block was used to make smaller, sharp pieces for cutting.

A Neapolitan police release states that extensive surveys of the seabed had to be carried out. All this was done to determine the size of the site and verify the possible presence of wooden hull elements or the cargo the vessel was carrying.

From the available information, we know that the site was discovered by police divers at the beginning of the year. Its exact location is kept secret to protect the site from looters. The dive, during which obsidian cores were recovered, was made on November 20.

Photo: Superintendency of the Naples Metropolitan Area

 

 

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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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