Ancient fruit baskets recovered from Egyptian underwater city

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ALEXANDRIA, EGYPT-The Guardian reports that a team of archaeologists from the European Institute of Underwater Archeology (IEASM) discovered funeral offerings, including wicker baskets filled with fruit, from a burial mound at the site of Thonis- Heracleion, a now submerged ancient city that was once Egypt’s largest port on the Mediterranean coast. Dating from the beginning of the 4th century BC. AD, the baskets still contained grape seeds and doum fruits preserved from the African palm. Under and around the burial mound, which is 197 feet long and 26 feet wide, researchers have found other artifacts, such as imported Greek black and red-figure pottery, terracotta figurines, amphorae, and mirrors. and bronze statuettes, all of which date from around this same period, when Greek merchants and mercenaries settled in the city. IEASM archaeologist Franck Goddio said burnt materials found at the site suggest the offerings were sealed after the ceremonies took place there. “There is something very strange here,” he said. “This site may have been used once, never touched before, never touched after, for some reason that we cannot understand at the moment. It is a great mystery. To learn more about Thonis-Heracleion, visit “Egypt’s Temple Town”.


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