Maritime Archaeology

Symian sponge divers during the Antikythera wreck operation

There are a few references regarding Maritime Archaeology in the Historic Archive of the Archaeological Service in Greece. Research in this sector began in the end of 19th century and in the beginning of 20th century. The first reference concerns the shipwreck ‘Mentor’ in the east of Kythera. Lord Elgin had ordered the transfer of the Parthenon marbles from Greece to Great Britain. In 1900 sponge divers from the island of Symi recovered a great number of artifacts from the waters. It was the first time that the Ministry of Religion and Public Education offered financial and technical support for the recovery of objects from the waters. The Antikythera wreck constitutes, in fact, the biggest part of maritime archaeology of the Historic Archive. There are partial references for the participation of Greece in the Navy Exhibition which took place in Massalia in September 1956. The theme of the exhibition was underwater findings.

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