Sunken Treasure: Egyptian Artifact Find Is Largest Nautical Collection From the Ancient World
2013 04 05

From: PastHorizon



Research sheds light on ancient Egyptian port and ship graveyard

New research into Thonis-Heracleion, a sunken port-city that served as the gateway to Egypt in the first millennium BC, was examined at a recent international conference at the University of Oxford. The port city, situated 6.5 kilometres off today’s coastline, was one of the biggest commercial hubs in the Mediterranean before the founding of Alexandria.

The Oxford Centre for Maritime Archaeology at the University of Oxford is collaborating on the project with the European Institute for Underwater Archaeology (IEASM) in cooperation with Egypt’s Ministry of State for Antiquities.

Port of entry

This obligatory port of entry, known as ‘Thonis’ by the Egyptians and ‘Heracleion’ by the Greeks, was where seagoing ships are thought to have unloaded their cargoes to have them assessed by temple officials and taxes extracted before transferring them to Egyptian ships that went upriver. In the ports of the city, divers and researchers are currently examining 64 Egyptian ships, dating between the eighth and second centuries BC, many of which appear to have been deliberately sunk. Researchers say the ships were found beautifully preserved, in the mud of the sea-bed. With 700 examples of different types of ancient anchor, the researchers believe this represents the largest nautical collection from the ancient world.


“The survey has revealed an enormous submerged landscape with the remains of at least two major ancient settlements within a part of the Nile delta that was criss-crossed with natural and artificial waterways,” said Dr Damian Robinson, Director of the Oxford Centre for Maritime Archaeology at the University of Oxford. Dr Robinson, who is overseeing the excavation of one of the submerged ships known as Ship 43, has discovered that the Egyptians had a unique shipbuilding style. He is also examining why the boats appear to have been deliberately sunk close to the port.

Several ship graveyards

“One of the key questions is why several ship graveyards were created about one mile from the mouth of the River Nile. Ship 43 appears to be part of a large cluster of at least ten other vessels in a large ship graveyard,” explained Dr Robinson. “This might not have been simple abandonment, but a means of blocking enemy ships from gaining entrance to the port-city. Seductive as this interpretation is, however, we must also consider whether these boats were sunk simply to use them for land reclamation purposes.”

Maritime trade in the ancient world

The port and its harbour basins also contain a collection of customs decrees, trading weights, and evidence of coin production. The material culture, for example, coin weights, was also discussed at the conference, placing this into the wider narrative of how maritime trade worked in the ancient world.

[...]

Read the full article at: pasthorizonspr.com




Related Articles
Sunken continent discovered at the bottom of the Indian Ocean
Drought in Poland reveals 400-year-old sunken treasures
U.S. drought reveals famous sunken ship
Surprising Sunken Islands Discovered Near Australia
Divers Explore Sunken Ruins Of Cleopatra’s Palace
Return to Antikythera: Divers revisit wreck where ancient computer found
Antikythera treasures: richest haul of objects ever found from the ancient world
The Forgotten Underworld of Japan - Mysterious Underwater Ruins
Red Ice Radio: Peter Lindberg - The Mysterious Baltic Sea Object
Osiris Shaft Tomb - Underwater - Underground Tunnels
Stone ships show signs of maritime network in Baltic Sea region 3,000 years ago
Whitley Strieber says object found in Baltic Sea may be older than Gobekli Tepe


Latest News from our Front Page

The Aeon of Horus is Ending and the Elites are Nervous as their Icons are Dying
2014 04 18
I predict there is going to be a huge resurgence of interest in European indigenous spiritual traditions from Norse to Celtic/Gaelic to Slavic and so on. Millions of Europeans are going to realise that we are the victims of Christianity and New Age garbage. Their bastardised Kabbalah, the psychic force used by Crowley and the elites to cement his Aeon ...
Easter - Christian or Pagan?
2014 04 18
From: truthbeknown.com Contrary to popular belief, Easter does not represent the "historical" crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ. In reality, the gospel tale reflects the annual "crossification" of the sun through the vernal equinox (Spring), at which time the sun is "resurrected," as the day begins to become longer than the night. Rather than being a "Christian" holiday, Easter celebrations date back ...
Man-Made Blood Might Be Used in Transfusions by 2016
2014 04 18
Researchers in the U.K. have created the first man-made red blood cells of high enough quality to be introduced into the human body The premise of the HBO show and book series True Blood revolves around a technological breakthrough: scientists figure out how to synthesize artificial human blood, which, as an ample new source of non-human food, allows vampires to "come ...
The Trials of the Cherokee Were Reflected In Their Skulls
2014 04 18
Researchers from North Carolina State University and the University of Tennessee have found that environmental stressors – from the Trail of Tears to the Civil War – led to significant changes in the shape of skulls in the eastern and western bands of the Cherokee people. The findings highlight the role of environmental factors in shaping our physical characteristics. ...
Our Fears May Be Shaped by Ancestral Trauma
2014 04 18
Last December, an unsettling Nature Neuroscience study found that mice who were taught to associate the smell of cherry blossoms with pain produced offspring who feared the smell of cherry blossoms, even if they had never been exposed to it before. We knew that the process was epigenetic—that it was not hard-wired in the permanent genetic structure of the mouse—but ...
More News »