Divers in Egypt have made an incredibly rare discovery in the waters of the Mediterranean.
Divers found the wreckage of a warship in the long-sunken city of Tunis-Heraklion, once Egypt’s largest port in the Mediterranean, and a burial complex indicating the presence of Greek traders, officials said.
The city, which controlled the entrance to Egypt and was built at the mouth of the West Nile, dominated this area for centuries before Alexander the Great conquered Alexandria in 331 BC.
The city, as well as most of the Nile Delta, was destroyed and drowned by the earthquake and huge waves that followed. Tonis-Heraklion was rediscovered in 2001 in Abu Kir Bay near Alexandria, reminds “Reuters”.
The warship discovered by an Egyptian-French team led by experts from the European Institute of Underwater Archeology sank when the famous Temple of Amon, beside which it was anchored, crashed in the second century BC.
Preliminary research shows that the 25-meter-long flat-bottomed ship, oars and large sail, was built in a classical manner and had the characteristics of an ancient Egyptian structure, according to the Egyptian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities.
In another part of the city, the team found the remains of a large Greek cemetery from the early 4th century BC.
“This discovery perfectly illustrates the presence of Greek merchants living in the city,” the ministry said, explaining that Greeks were allowed to settle there during the Pharaonic dynasties.
“They built their own sanctuaries around the great temple of Ammon. Those sanctuaries were destroyed at the same time and their remains were mixed with the remains of an Egyptian temple,” the statement added.