Egypt discovers 3 Roman-era shipwrecks underwater in Alexandria

Source: Xinhua| 2017-11-22 03:51:56|Editor: yan
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CAIRO, Nov. 21 (Xinhua) -- Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA) announced on Tuesday the discovery of three shipwrecks dating back to the Roman era on the seabed of northern coastal province of Alexandria.

The three shipwrecks, in addition to a royal head carved in crystal, have been discovered during excavation works carried out by the Egyptian mission in collaboration with the European Institute for Underwater Archeology in the eastern port of Alexandria, said SCA Secretary-General Mostafa Waziri in a statement.

"The mission has succeeded to uncover also a royal head carved in crystal dating back to the Roman era and it probably belongs to the army's commander 'Antonio', in addition to three gold coins dating back to Emperor Octavius, in Abu Qir bay in Alexandria," Waziri revealed.

"The mission has also uncovered a votive bark of god Osiris in the sunken city of Heracleion in Abu Qir bay," he added.

Underwater archeologists believe that the discovery may lead the mission to other hidden treasures and perhaps to a fourth shipwreck that might be uncovered during the coming season.

Alexandria is distinguished by having sunken treasures dating back to the fourth and second centuries BC, besides some other shipwrecks dating back to the first and second world wars.

In the 1990s, beneath the eastern harbor area of Abu Qir bay, Egypt discovered the sunken city of Cleopatra, an Egyptian ancient queen of Greek Macedonian descent who drove the merge of the Pharaonic and Greek cultures in ancient Egypt.

Featuring thousands of artifacts, Cleopatra's sunken city, along with the city of Heracleion and other underwater antiquities, led the Egyptian government in 1996 to propose establishing an underwater museum for their display, an idea that is supported by the UNESCO but yet to be carried out.