With the aim of combining research and teaching activities, a series of seminars was organized over the years, within the activities of the Chair of Archaeologic Research Methodology (Prof. G. Olcese), to study the cargoes of shipwrecks from the Roman era.
Thanks to the collaboration with Museo Archeologico Regionale Eoliano L. Bernabò Brea, Soprintendenza per i Beni Archeologici della Toscana and DRASSM, has been possible to study the amphorae and ceramics from some important shipwrecks.
Some of the data collected are presented below.
SEMINARS AT LIPARI
(2011, 2015, 2016)
- Alberti shipwreck
Location: between 38 and 48 m of depth, about 70-80 m South-West of Formiche di Panarea rocks;
cargo: different types of amphorae;
dating: second half of the 1st century A.D.
- Dattilo shipwreck
Location: Dattilo rock, near the island of Panarea;
cargo: black gloss pottery;
dating: 4th century B.C.
- Filicudi A shipwreck
Location: between 33 and 43 m of depth, on the South-East side of the Secca di Capo Graziano;
cargo: late Graeco-Italic amphorae, black gloss pottery, household ware;
dating: first quarter of the 2nd century B.C. / middle of the 2nd century B.C. or a little later.
- Secca di Capistello shipwreck
Location: between 55 and 90 m of depth, near the Southern end of Lipari island (Aeolian Islands), about 300 m from the coastline, near the Secca di Capistello;
cargo: amphorae, black gloss pottery, lamp, punic pottery;
dating: 300-280 B.C.
SEMINAR AT ELBA
- Montecristo A shipwreck
Location: at about 70 m of depth, North of Cala del Diavolo, an island of Montecristo;
cargo: Graeco-Italic amphorae, black gloss pottery, household ware, achromatic ceramic; iron anchor;
dating: first half of the 3rd century B.C. / 250-240 B.C.
Following the seminar, an exhibition has been organized at Museo dei Gessi in Sapienza - Università di Rome about the activities and the results of the study (March 27, 2014).
SEMINAR AT AIX-EN-PROVENCE
- La Ciotat 3 shipwreck
Location: at 57 m of depth, near La Ciotat, 400 m a East of the Île Verte;
cargo: Dressel 1 amphorae, household ware, thin-walled vessels, lava stone container;
dating: end of the 2nd century B.C. - first quarter of the 1st century B.C.
- Riou 3 shipwreck
Location: at 14-15 m of depth, North-West of Riou island (Est of Marseilles bay);
cargo: Dressel 1 A and 1 C amphorae, black gloss pottery, household ware, a lamp, a metal tool;
dating: 110-80 B.C.
SEMINAR AT PISA
As part of the activities of the Course, a seminar was carried out at Museo delle navi antiche di Pisa, where the students had the possibility to visit the shipyard and to exercise in the study of amphorae.
FILICUDI F SHIPWRECK
The Project also included the study of Filicudi F shipwreck, in the Aeolian Islands. The results are in preparation and soon to be published.
Location: between 52-55 and 65-70 m of depth, around the Secca di Capo Graziano;
cargo: amphorae, black gloss pottery, household ware, louterion;
dating: 300-280 B.C.
THE ANALYSES OF THE CONTENTS
In order to determine the original content and the nature of the foodstuffs traded in some shipwrecks, two series of chemical analyses have been conducted on the Graeco-Italic amphorae dating to the end of the 4th and the beginning of the 3rd century B.C. from Filicudi F and Secca di Capistello shipwrecks.
The implemented methodology consists of two successive steps, conducted by N. Garnier, of extraction and purification of organic matter preserved as absorbed residues in the porous walls of the ceramics, and the analysis by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) of each extract.
The results highlighted the presence of pitch from Pinaceae (Pinus sp.) and of tartaric, malic, syringic, and succinic acids, wine markers: in conclusion, the analyses indicate that the amphorae, produced in Campania, contained red wine!