(Fourni, Greece) – A total of forty-five shipwrecks have been found in the Fournia archipelago, which is made up of several small islands. Twenty-two of these shipwrecks were found last September, and twenty-three more were found recently in 2016. This has led experts to believe that the site of these wrecks is actually a “shipwreck graveyard.” There are wrecks that have been dated from several different time periods, including the Archaic period and also the Roman Era. The fact that there are ships dating from multiple eras in history is another factor that has led people to believe that this was a known dumping ground for defunct ships. Seeker.com refers to this site as, “the ancient shipwreck capital of the world.” The additional twenty-three ships were actually found last month.
Peter Campbell of the University of Southampton told Discovery News, “These shipwrecks demonstrate the truly exceptional significance of the archipelago and establish the project as one of the most exciting currently in archaeology.” Campbell is also the co-director of the RPM Nautical Foundation, which is based in the United States. He also said that, “Overall, Late Roman vessels are still the predominant type, but we see that ships were traveling past Fourni in every time period.”
Other significant wrecks have been found elsewhere in the world, including Northern Africa and other places in the Aegean Sea. For archaeologists, these wrecks can offer clues and information related to different civilizations and societies. According to Campbell, “Some shipwrecks even carried goods from North Africa, Spain, and Italy.” He went on to explain that there is a high volume of ships located in this region in the Mediterranean because it was major trade route. He also said that, “We believe there are many more wreck sites to be found.” Each wreck offers a clue to help us all understand the past.