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Marble head of Hercules pulled up from Roman shipwreck site in Greece

By Helena Smith

21 Jun 2022 · 2 min read

Editor's Note

There's nothing quite like an ancient shipwreck to capture the imagination. Some good news from the realm of archaeology to read this evening.

For archaeologists, it’s the underwater find that keeps on giving. A Roman-era cargo ship, discovered by chance off the Greek island of Antikythera more than 120 years ago and regarded as the world’s richest ancient shipwreck, has yielded yet more treasures in the most recent explorations of it, including the missing head of a statue of the demigod Hercules.

“In 1900, [sponge divers] pulled out the statue of Hercules [from the sea] and now in all probably we’ve found its head,” said Prof Lorenz Baumer, the classical archaeologist who is overseeing the underwater mission with the University of Geneva.

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