In search of lost treasures in the Aeolian Sea


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Exploration at the bottom of the Aeolian Sea has begun in a bid to discover and document ancient sea-wrecks. Operations took off in Panarea and are being conducted by the Aurora Trust Foundation together with the Sea Authority, the aid of U-Boat Worx and Rov AtlantEco submarines and the co-operation of the Lipari Port Authority.

In search of lost treasures in the Aeolian Sea
Divers illuminate Graeco-Roman artifacts of a ship that sunk during 
the Punic Wars between 218-201 B.C., in the Mediterranean Sea, 
off the Aeolian Island of Panarea near Italy 
[Credit: GUE/Ingemar Lundgren]

The Aeolian sea is filled with archaeological treasures: wrecks and urns scattered between Panarea, Lipari and Filicudi, among which a number of recent finds.

Last year the wreck of a ship that sank 2,000 years ago was discovered close to Lipari, at 130 mt of depth. An ancient altar with embossed decorations depicting sea-waves was found close to the relict proving that sacrifices took place on ancient ships to gain favour from the gods.

Research at the sites, guided by the Sea Authority’s Sebastiano Tusa was conducted by two submarines “Triton submersibles” with the aid of deep-sea divers.

The technology employed during the mission was provided by Gue and Brownie’s Global Logistic, as well as the 50 mt ship “Pacific Provider” fitted with the most recent devices for complex technical diving as well as a hyperbaric chamber that ensured support to recognition operations.

Professor Tusa is enthusiastic about the results: “In my archaelogical careeer I have encountered and touched many ancient and modern sunken wrecks, but being able to reach a 2,000 year old vessel 130 metres deep at the bottom of the most silent and dark sea, made me feel new and indescribable emotions”.

Editor’s Note:  The Aeolian Islands are a volcanic archipelago in the Tyrrhenian Sea north of Sicily, named after the Greek demigod of the winds Aeolus.

Source: ANSA [June 29, 2015]



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