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Underwater Exploration of Spanish Shipwreck in Zakynthos

Zante-shipwreckThe Spanish shipwreck that lies in the sea bottom just off the coast of Zakynthos, Greece, continues to amaze archaeologists with its hidden treasures. The ship dates back to the end of the 15th century and archaeologists have brought to light numerous discoveries that show the greatness of the Spanish navy during that era.
This year’s systematic underwater exploration, conducted by the General Directorate of Antiquities and Cultural Heritage, focused on the central part of the shipwreck and was completed on October 6 under the direction of archaeologist Katerina Dellaporta.
The operation revealed the frames on the west and east sides of the keelson, and part of the tween deck (the intermediate deck). The ship’s wooden frame has been preserved, allowing the study of the transitional art of shipbuilding during the 15th and 16th centuries.
The ship dates to the era shortly after the Battle of Naupactus and it is the only remaining shipwreck of the Spanish navy during the reign of Philip II of Spain, according to several silver coins found on board, as well as the initials engraved on a pistol grip.
Given that the lifting, maintenance and exhibition of wooden shipwrecks are not always financially feasible, UNESCO has requested the ‘in situ’ protection and management of shipwrecks.

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