2,000 Year-Old Roman Shipwreck So Well-Preserved, Even The Food Is 'Fresh'

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Usually when researchers get excited about a shipwreck, it's because it contains treasures like precious metals or ancient artifacts. However, in the case of a recent find, the buzz is all about . . . . . . the well-preserved food and wine!

Discovered in early August the 2,000 years old yet to be identified Roman vessel was first spotted by fisherman from the coastal town of Varazze, that lies 18 miles west of Genoa, Italy. They alerted the local authorities after inadvertently catching fragments of amphorae, (terracota jar-like containers used in the ancient times to transport food) in their fishnets.

Using a remotely operated vehicle, the officials first marked out the ship's exact location and then sent down divers to examine the area for remains of a sunken ship. To their surprise, just 200 feet below the surface of the water, preserved all these years by the sandy mud, lay an almost intact wreck. Inside, are about 200 amphorae - While some are broken, most are sealed. The few that have been brought to the surface were found to contain perishables like pickled fish, grain, wine and oil.

Experts believe that the ship was a Roman merchant vessel that was carrying food and wine from Central Italy to Spain to barter for other goods sometime between the 1st Century BC and 1st Century AD. Researchers are hoping that further investigation of the food items that still lies inside some of the other containers, will give them an interesting insight into the lifestyle of the ancient Europeans.

The Italian authorities are still deciding whether to bring up the entire ship so that its contents can be examined thoroughly. Meanwhile, they have sealed off the area from fishermen and other vessels to prevent damage and looting.

Resources: news.discovery.com, dailymail.co.uk

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Geography
213 Comments
  • Pandalover2Thursday, November 17, 2016 at 4:16 pm
    Ewww why would they think that!!!!
    • Jimmy 123Tuesday, November 15, 2016 at 8:59 am
      This articular in my opinion is very Interesting.
      • wonderwomen1010
        wonderwomen1010Thursday, October 13, 2016 at 2:19 pm
        Acutully its amazing!!!
        • mmaaddiiThursday, September 15, 2016 at 10:19 am
          wow this is crazy
          • ErinTuesday, May 3, 2016 at 3:56 pm
            Cool
            • nikukyu
              nikukyuFriday, March 13, 2015 at 6:54 pm
              I heard that wine tastes better the longer you preserve it...(gasp) WILL THEY DRINK IT??
              • bigmelo
                bigmeloFriday, March 13, 2015 at 5:43 pm
                I'm scared. To only think about the sacred artifacts & fossils lingering underneath the Earth that we still haven't discovered yet... I guess we'll find more discoveries like this soon enough! :D
                • doglover15
                  doglover15Wednesday, November 23, 2016 at 5:24 pm
                  yep. Only time will tell, as some of the 'oldies' say.
                • zoo cool Tuesday, February 10, 2015 at 7:55 am
                  im not in to this
                  • whateverTuesday, January 27, 2015 at 4:05 pm
                    totes gross
                    • nicholasThursday, January 22, 2015 at 8:20 am
                      awesome article