June 29, 2022, 4:53

    Lost ‘face of Hercules’ found in mystery shipwreck after 2,000 years underwater – World News

    Lost ‘face of Hercules’ found in mystery shipwreck after 2,000 years underwater – World News

    The lost 'face of Hercules' has been found in a mystery shipwreck after 2,000 years.

    A nine-foot statue of the demigod sank beneath the waves near the Greek island of Antikythera at some point in the first century BC.

    Made for a “very rich” Roman, the statue remained submerged until 1900, when the wreck was discovered and the sculpture – missing its head – was raised.

    Now, with the statue on display at the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, archaeologists have found the missing head, revealing a likeness of Hercules not seen for two millennia.

    Lorenz Baumer of the University of Geneva in Switzerland, who co-directed the excavation, said the head had been hidden by an act of god.

    The face of Hercules has been revealed after divers discovered his likeness in a shipwreck
    (

    Image:
    Credit: Orestis Manousos via Pen News)

    Archaeologists have found the missing head of the statue which is on display at the National Archaeological Museum in Athens
    (

    Image:
    Credit: Lorenz Baumer via Pen News)

    He said: “It was found, together with many other objects, in a zone that was covered by several tons of rocks that had fallen on the site during an earthquake at a not-yet-known date.

    “We got access to that zone by removing the rocks with the help of a sophisticated lifting system.”
    The final destination for the statue was likely the eternal city – Rome herself.

    Professor Baumer continued: “The ship carried a huge cargo with – among many other objects – a large number of statues in marble and bronze.

    Archaeologists must now show that the artifact belongs to the headless sculpture in Athens
    (

    Image:
    Credit: Nikos Giannoulakis via Pen News)

    “In the first century BC, very rich Romans ordered sculptures for their private gardens. They were delivered by ship to Rome or to other destinations.

    “The ship was heading westwards – as the material is from the Eastern Mediterranean – probably to Rome, but we don't have any proof of that for the time being.

    “The reason for the sinking might be a storm, but we hope to win clearer information with our research.

    “We only can say that it was for sure a very expensive sculpture.”

    Archaeologists must now show that the artifact belongs to the headless sculpture in Athens.
    In any case, they’re in no doubt as to who it depicts.

    A nine-foot statue of Hercules sank beneath the waves near the Greek island of Antikythera in the first century BC
    (

    Image:
    Credit: Nikos Giannoulakis via Pen News)

    Professor Baumer said; “Herakles or Hercules has a clear iconography, with his beard, the marked forms of his face, his hair, his club, the lion skin, and so on.

    “We know of a few Roman copies of the original statue created by the Greek sculptor Lysippos in the fourth century BC, though the original is not preserved.”

    Once combined with the rest of the statue, the head – which is inclined – will tower almost 9ft 2ins above the ground.

    Professor Baumer said his excavators were hoping to reveal more about the archaeological context of the ship, learning more about its route and its history.

    The Antikythera wreck was discovered in 1900 by a crew of sponge divers making a stopover en-route to their fishing grounds off North Africa.

    It has since been excavated several times, including by the celebrated French naval officer, Jacques Cousteau.

    One of the wreck’s most revered treasures is the Antikythera mechanism, an astronomical device that’s been called the world’s oldest analogue computer.

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    Sourse: mirror.co.uk

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