Italian divers discover 16th-century shipwreck

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The remains of a large Renaissance-era ship off the north Italian coast of Liguria could belong to the legendary Santo Spirito, one of Italy’s largest galleons which was shipwrecked off Camogli on 29 October 1579.

Italian divers discover 16th-century shipwreck
Credit: Soprintendenza Archeologia Belle Arti e Paesaggio della Liguria

The news, announced by Italy’s superintendency on 19 June, follows the discovery of the shipwreck in February by two expert divers in the protected marine area of Porto Pidocchio, near Genoa, at a depth of 50 metres.

Italian divers discover 16th-century shipwreck
Credit: Soprintendenza Archeologia Belle Arti e Paesaggio della Liguria




The find has been described as “important” as it is the first discovery of a shipwreck from that era, complete with intact timber elements, a rare occurrence.

Italian divers discover 16th-century shipwreck
Credit: Soprintendenza Archeologia Belle Arti e Paesaggio della Liguria

Investigations are now being carried out by historians and specialist divers in an attempt to identify and date the wreck.

Italian divers discover 16th-century shipwreck
Credit: Soprintendenza Archeologia Belle Arti e Paesaggio della Liguria

“We can expect ceramics and coins to emerge” – art historian and diving superintendent Alessandra Cabella told Italian news agency ANSA – “but also navigational instruments, such as sextants or armillary spheres, as well as artillery and anchors.”

Source: Wanted in Milan [June 21, 2020]