Italian Riviera: 2,000 year old boat discovered off the coast of Ligurian town Varazze
A seabed of secrets
Following years of fishermen's tales of clay finds, a dive was recently organised just off the coast of Ligurian town Varazze. Armed with all the technological weaponry of the 21st century, Lietenant Colonel Francesco Schilardi and his team descended to the depths of the Mediterranean in search of discovery.
They weren't disappointed. Almost 100 metres down, a Roman ship lay preciously encased in centuries of thick mud and sand.
The wreck has been described as one of the most important of its kind, with Schilardi telling Italian newspaper La Repubblica, "It is a relic of great history and value". He reportedly believes the vast marine hulk could contain up to 200 amphorae and pots which would have helped transport foods such as fish, grain, honey, spices and wine across the famous trading ground that was once the Mediterranean sea.
While discoveries similar to this are fairly common in these waters, Italian media have reported that Schilardi's expedition could help to reveal important information on the diets and commercial goings on of the period.
Early estimates place the boat at around 2,000 years old and it is a miraculous feat that the vessel remains in its almost intact condition.
Eager to learn more about the ship and its history, expert minds will now be turning towards the expense and financing of a potential raising operation of this long-lost treasure.
What more could this Roman warrior reveal?