Skip to comments.An archaeological mystery in a half-ton lead coffin
Posted on 03/29/2010 12:52:22 PM PDT by decimon
The lead coffin archaeologists found in the abandoned ancient city of Gabii, Italy could contain a gladiator or bishop.
ANN ARBOR, Mich.In the ruins of a city that was once Rome's neighbor, archaeologists last summer found a 1,000-pound lead coffin.
Who or what is inside is still a mystery, said Nicola Terrenato, the University of Michigan professor of classical studies who leads the projectthe largest American dig in Italy in the past 50 years.
The sarcophagus will soon be transported to the American Academy in Rome, where engineers will use heating techniques and tiny cameras in an effort to gain insights about the contents without breaking the coffin itself.
"We're very excited about this find," Terrenato said. "Romans as a rule were not buried in coffins to begin with and when they did use coffins, they were mostly wooden. There are only a handful of other examples from Italy of lead coffins from this agethe second, third or fourth century A.D. We know of virtually no others in this region."
The site of Gabii, situated on undeveloped land 11 miles east of Rome in modern-day Lazio, was a major city that pre-dates Rome but seems to have waned as the Roman Empire grew.
Studying Gabii gives researchers a glimpse into pre-Roman life and offers clues to how early Italian cities formed. It also allows them broader access to more substantial archaeological layers or strata. In Rome, layers of civilization were built on top of each other, and archaeologists are not able or allowed to disturb them.
(Excerpt) Read more at ns.umich.edu ...
Lead the weigh ping.
Don't open it!
Looks like the head and the foot panels have been blown out by the overload.
Paging Pandora, Ms. Pandora.......
In a completely unrelated story, several archaeologists were found with their faces melted off and others in various liquefied states.
Obama’s chief science advisor suggests they x-ray it.
Yea! What fools! I saw that movie on the Showtime free preview weekend.
(This is where Showtime tries to entice new subscribers to their movie channel by showing second run movies at least five years old, or movies where Pamela Anderson plays a walk on part.)
Anyway, unless there is a geeky kid with a totally hot girlfriend whose uncle works at the museum, the world is hosed if they open that coffin.
Plan B would be an alcoholic ex-cop who is too old for this kind of thing.
Plan C is the brilliant but underfunded scientist whose theories are scoffed at.
There is no plan D. Hollywood just recycles A-C.
Oh, wait. . . . ;^)
If Geraldo Rivera shows up and utters the words “Al Capone”, you know it’s gonna be a bust.
Don’t they know lead is toxic?
So that’s where Lex Luthor has been hiding!
“Do not open until 2110”
My thoughts too. It's a sealed lead coffin for a reason!
Wow, Michael Jackson looked bad towards the end there.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.