Archaeologists Uncover 3 New Mediterranean Shipwrecks Near Keith Reef

The research operation was reportedly coordinated by UNESCO and witnessed the team make the stunning discovery close to the site of three earlier known Roman wrecks.

Using next-gen technology and impeccable coordination under UNESCO, an expert team of international, experienced archaeologists from the eight Mediterranean nations discovered three brand-new wrecks, shedding light on the region’s rich maritime history.

Mediterranean Shipwrecks Near Keith Reef
Credits: UNESCO

Archaeologists involved in the discovery come from eight Mediterranean nations, including Egypt, Algeria, Croatia, France, Morocco, Italy, Tunisia, and Spain.

Coordinated by UNESCO, the team has discovered that the new specimen is not far from the three earlier known Roman wrecks.

The mission aimed to thoroughly survey the Skerki Bank and identify archaeological remains instead of recovering artefacts. The researchers utilized multibeam sonar and remotely operated underwater vehicles (ROVs) to map the seafloor and examine the wrecks off Sicily and Tunisia.

The newly discovered shipwrecks were unearthed close to Keith Reef, a treacherous region of the Skerki Bank located between Tunisia and Sicily. The area has proved to be one of the challenging routes for vessels to navigate owing to the shallow depths.

These wrecks discovered offer evidence of past vessel failures and looting activities. This feat highlights the importance of ongoing efforts to safeguard and learn more from historical artefacts.

During the mission, the team reportedly examined two wrecks from the end of the 19th or early 20th century, one that measures 242 feet and the other one that measures 50 feet, as well as an ancient merchant vessel that measures 50 feet.

They also examined three Roman wrecks off Italy’s coast, including two first-century merchant vessels loaded with amphorae, common wares, stone, and ceramics. They also examined a first-century BCE cargo vessel with similar cargo.

Advancements in technology have significantly aided maritime archaeologists in imaging and documenting underwater sites, irrespective of depth. The most recent exploration missions have highlighted the ability to uphold detailed 3D models of the wreckages like the Titanic.

The findings reinforce the cultural heritage preserved underneath the sea’s surface and emphasize the need for protection.

The collaboration between the Mediterranean nations demonstrates the dedication to exploring and safeguarding the region’s maritime history.

References: Yahoo! News, Gizmodo, Sputnik Globe

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