Ancient shipwreck off Malta leaves 700 BC cargo

August 25, 2014

Divers near a Maltese island have found an ancient ship's cargo that experts say is yielding what could be some of the oldest Phoenician artifacts.

University of Malta researcher Timothy Gambin said Monday the 20 grinding stones and 50 amphorae from the ship date back to around 700 B.C.

Experts hope to find parts of the ship and other artifacts beneath the sandy seabed 1 mile (1. 6 kilometers) off Gozo island. They say the ship probably was sailing between Sicily and Malta when it sank.

French National Research Agency and Texas A&M University researchers are also involved.

The location of the shipwreck, discovered months ago, will be disclosed after finish their work.

The Phoenicians were a trading people who plied the Mediterranean from 1550 B.C. until 300 B.C.

Explore further: Excavation planned for Phoenician city

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