A diving team from a Franco-Egyptian research mission has found a classical Greek burial ground and an ancient warship in the sunken Egyptian port city of Thônis-Heracleion. The city’s history is revealed by the discovery of the cemetery and nave, which dates back centuries.
After a temple dedicated to Amun collapsed in the Nile, the ship went down in the second century BC. This was probably due to an earthquake. The ship is described as a classic Egyptian warship measuring 25 meters in width and equipped with oars and sail by the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities and Tourism.
According to the ministry, the ship was found under five meters of mud. Local media hears from one of the researchers that it is a rare find that such an old fast ship has been discovered.
Thônis-Heracleion was for centuries the leading city in the region and the main port of entry to the Mediterranean for Egypt. It was home to many Greek merchants. The Greek cemetery, which dates back to the fourth century BC, is located in the city. The cemetery was situated next to the temple of Amun. Both the temple and the tombs were found in the Nile at once. The human remains of Greeks, Egyptians, and others are now mixed together. This is most likely due to an earthquake.
Amun was the creator god and supreme god of Egyptian mythology. He was worshiped at many locations.
The city lost its power in 331 BC when Alexander the Great founded Alexandria. Thônis-Heracleion completely disappeared in the Nile in the following years due to earthquakes and high waves, with a large part of the Nile Delta. The city was discovered in 2001 near Alexandria.