A treasure trove of ancient Greek items found in 5 shipwrecks in Kassos

5 November 2019
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Five shipwrecks and a treasure trove of finds some dating to the classical period were discovered off the coast of the island of Kasos in the Dodecanese.

The members of the archaeological marine mission are hopeful that an ancient port facility could also possibly come to light.

The underwater exploration brought to the surface five stone pyramidal anchors, while one of the shipwreck’s cargo includes amphorae of at least four different types, fine ceramics as well as parts of storage pits.

Based on the pottery collected and raised to the surface, the shipwreck can be dated to the end of the 4th or the beginning of the 3rd century BC. The type of cargo and the stone anchors found are similar to the shipwreck of the Antikythera dragonera reagent, dating to the late 4th century BC.

As for the other four shipwrecks, one carried Rhodian amphorae of the 1st century BC, another shipwreck had amphorae and table pottery of the Byzantine period, dating between the 8th and 10th century AD, a wooden ship dating back to the post-revolutionary period and a shipwreck of later times carrying building material.

Other finds, separate from the shipwrecks included iron canons, Byzantine and later anchors, and pottery discards, which testify to the continuous and uninterrupted use of maritime space since ancient times.

The research was carried out by the Ephorate of Underwater Antiquities of the Ministry of Culture and Sports in collaboration with the National Research Institute of Historical Research from September 24 to October 10, 2019, under the direction of archaeologists Dr. George Koutsouflakis and Xanthi Argyri.

The Kassian Fraternity of New York funded the mission, as well as Mr. Carlton Hoye, while the Municipality of Kassos, and the businesses of Apnea, Aquatec, Asso. subsea, BlueStarFerries, Eurobrokers and Map4u supported the mission with the provision of equipment.

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