Lost Egyptian city of Heracleion recreated in 3D

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Scientists have recreated in 3D the legendary Egyptian city of Heracleion, which submerged nearly 1,200 years ago to produce a picture of what the life was like in the era of the pharaohs.

Lost Egyptian city of Heracleion recreated in 3D
3D recreation of Heracleion, wjich disappeared beneath the Mediterranean around 1,200

years ago [Credit: Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation/Graphic: Yann Bernard]

Heracleion, a city of extraordinary wealth mentioned in Homer, visited by Helen of Troy, which apparently buried under the sea, was believed to be a legend for centuries.

More than a decade after uncovering its treasures, archaeologists have produced a picture of what life was like in the city in the era of the pharaohs, the Telegraph reported.

The city vanished beneath the Mediterranean around 1,200 years ago and was found during a survey of the Egyptian shore at the beginning of the last decade.

Now its life at the heart of trade routes in classical times are becoming clear, with researchers forming the view that the city was the main customs hub through which all trade from Greece and elsewhere in the Mediterranean entered Egypt.

They have discovered the remains of more than 64 ships buried in the thick clay and sand that now covers the sea bed. Gold coins and weights made from bronze and stone have also been found, hinting at the trade that went on.

Giant 16 foot statues have been uncovered and brought to the surface while archaeologists have found hundreds of smaller statues of minor gods on the sea floor.

“It is a major city we are excavating. The site has amazing preservation,” Dr Damian Robinson, director of the Oxford Centre for Maritime Archaeology at the University of Oxford, who is also part of the team, said.

“We are now starting to look at some of the more interesting areas within it to try to understand life there,” Dr Damian Robinson, director of the Oxford Centre for Maritime Archaeology at the University of Oxford, who is part of the team, said.

Source: The Asian Age [April 30, 2013]

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