Archaeologists study a 2700-year-old shipwreck off coast of Malta

A shipwreck dated to the 7th century BC off the coast of Gozo island in the Maltese archipelago is studied by underwater archaeologists. Its cargo revealed that the Maltese islands were an integral part of the Phoenician trade route in the Mediterranean.

The wreckage studied by underwater archaeologists (by International Business Times)
The wreckage studied by underwater archaeologists (by International Business Times)

The ship was initially found in 2007 and has been studied several times, but in 2014 the archaeologists  from the University of Malta and University of Aix-Marseille in France returned with advanced equipment to produce very high-resolution imagery and unearth the artefacts. Despite bad weather they were able to recover two amphorae, an urn and a grinding stone but could not map the site.

Amphorae found as the cargo (by International Business Times)
Amphorae found as the cargo (by International Business Times)

Among the retrieved finds is a jug which, believe to have originated from Malta, providing evidence that Malta was integrated in the Phoenician trade network at the time. The presence of Maltese pottery aboard the ship indicates it had called into one of Malta’s ports and that it is only after leaving one of these ports that it was caught in a storm and sank. The ship’s cargo is said to contain a fantastic mix of objects, including at least six types of different ceramic objects from different areas around the Mediterranean. These recovered vessels are now scheduled for residue analysis to reveal what types of merchandise were carried inside.

(after International Business Times)

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