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Smuggled Cargo Found on Ancient Roman Ship
Discovery News ^ | Wednesday, April 25, 2012 | Rossella Lorenzi

Posted on 04/28/2012 7:12:45 PM PDT by SunkenCiv

Following an analysis of the jars and their contents, Tusa and colleagues concluded that the 52- by 16-foot ship was sailing from North Africa when she sank some 1,700 years ago, probably while trying to enter the local river Birgi.

In North Africa the vaulting tubes cost a quarter of what builders paid for them in Rome.

"It was a somewhat tolerated smuggling activity, used by sailors to round their poor salaries. They bought these small tubes cheaper in Africa, hid them everywhere within the ship, and then re-sold them in Rome," Tusa said.

According to Frank Sear, professor of classical studies at the University of Melbourne, vaults featuring rows of fictile tubes were most common in North Africa from about the 2nd century AD.

"The tiles were also frequently imported to Sicily and turn up in many places such as Syracuse, Catania, Marsala and Motya. There are good examples of them in the baths of the late Roman villa at Piazza Armerina," Sear, a leading authority on Roman architecture, told Discovery News.

The smuggled cargo, as well as the jars and ceramic food bowls used by the sailors, were recovered in perfectly preserved condition.

The old cargo vessel was completely covered by a thick layer of clay and sea grass meadows -- a sort of natural coating which has also preserved most of the ship's wooden structure.

"We have recovered more than 700 wooden pieces. Both the left and the right side of the hull has remained almost intact. Once reassembled, this will be the most complete Roman ship ever found," Tusa said

Now under restoration at a specialized lab in Salerno, the vessel is expected to be displayed in a local museum within two years.

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: History; Science; Travel
KEYWORDS: godsgravesglyphs; romanempire
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To: mamelukesabre; SunkenCiv

Or, to sharpen the post...... what is a vaulting tube?

21 posted on 04/29/2012 5:38:27 AM PDT by bert ((K.E. N.P. N.C. +12 ..... Present failure and impending death yield irrational action))
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To: SunkenCiv
Thank you. I always read and appreciate your posts.


22 posted on 04/29/2012 5:52:56 AM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
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To: central_va; Larry Lucido; bert; JRandomFreeper; blam; mamelukesabre; Graewoulf; TigersEye; fella; ..

Thanks central_va.

23 posted on 04/29/2012 6:01:39 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (FReepathon 2Q time --
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To: Larry Lucido

I got your vaulting tube right here.

24 posted on 04/29/2012 6:05:53 AM PDT by central_va ( I won't be reconstructed and I do not give a damn.)
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To: central_va

Thanks for your 10.75 megabyte link that came complete with pics demonstrating the process. I gather the following:

Builders use wooden forms to form a temporary vaulted ceiling. Then, after they lay a layer of cement on the forms, they laid on the ‘vaulting tubes” which were flexible and provided some strength. Another layer of cement goes on top of the tubes. Remove the wooden forms on which the various layers rested and and you have a smooth vaulted surface of cement on top and bottom of the tubes.

God, I love the internet.

25 posted on 04/29/2012 7:06:44 AM PDT by wildbill (You're just jealous because the Voices talk only to me.)
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To: SunkenCiv

Link to picture of how they were used for vaulting. Scroll down to drawing.

26 posted on 04/29/2012 7:55:18 AM PDT by La Lydia
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To: wildbill

I agree fascinating world we live in.

27 posted on 04/29/2012 8:21:18 AM PDT by STD ([You must help] people in the communityÂ…feel so frustrated, so defeated, so lost, so futureless)
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To: SunkenCiv
The vaulting tube technique is particularly common in Roman North Africa. Here the tubes were used instead of timber, as there was a shortage of wood for temporary supports to place a roof on a building.

Interesting. They are actually a type of concrete form that becomes incorporated into the structure. It sounds like their only structural value is during the construction process.

28 posted on 04/29/2012 10:50:43 AM PDT by TigersEye (Life is about choices. Your choices. Make good ones.)
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To: TigersEye

Thanks TigersEye.

29 posted on 04/29/2012 5:44:32 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (FReepathon 2Q time --
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To: central_va


30 posted on 04/29/2012 5:47:27 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (FReepathon 2Q time --
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To: La Lydia

Hey, nice! That looks like a good standalone topic.

The earliest domes in the Med though are the corbelled domes (such as the so-called “Treasury of Atreus”) built by the Mycenaean Greeks.

31 posted on 04/29/2012 5:49:01 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (FReepathon 2Q time --
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To: SunkenCiv

Nice corbelled arch at Uxmal. But no dome.

32 posted on 04/30/2012 8:29:38 PM PDT by La Lydia
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