Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

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 news.discovery.com ...


TOPICS: History; Science; Travel
KEYWORDS: godsgravesglyphs; romanempire
A Roman shipwreck, dating to the third century AD, has revealed signs of smuggling. [Sebastiano Tusa]

Smuggled Cargo Found on Ancient Roman Ship

1 posted on 04/28/2012 7:12:51 PM PDT by SunkenCiv
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

Ancient Greek Ships Carried More Than Just Wine
Nature | Friday, October 14, 2011 | Jo Marchant
Posted on 10/16/2011 7:46:09 PM PDT by SunkenCiv
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/2793761/posts


2 posted on 04/28/2012 7:17:33 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (FReepathon 2Q time -- https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; decimon; 1010RD; 21twelve; 24Karet; 2ndDivisionVet; ...

 GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother & Ernest_at_the_Beach
To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list.


3 posted on 04/28/2012 7:19:28 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (FReepathon 2Q time -- https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv
I need to remember every so often to thank you for posting these fascinating articles. Thanks.
4 posted on 04/28/2012 7:27:42 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv
They bought these small tubes cheaper in Africa, hid them everywhere within the ship, and then re-sold them in Rome

So, poor government regulation of a product resulted in a black market for that product, and people willing to risk life and limb to supply it.

Who'd have guessed that would happen?

5 posted on 04/28/2012 7:27:55 PM PDT by Ken H (Austerity is the irresistible force. Entitlements are the immovable object.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv

They need to find and punish those smugglers now. lol


6 posted on 04/28/2012 7:33:53 PM PDT by GeronL (The Right to Life came before the Right to Pursue Happiness)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv

I’m not quite getting it. These tubes interlocked to do what? Build a stay-in-place form for a masonry arch?


7 posted on 04/28/2012 7:40:25 PM PDT by mamelukesabre
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: hinckley buzzard

Thanks hb for the kind remarks!


8 posted on 04/28/2012 8:02:38 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (FReepathon 2Q time -- https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: mamelukesabre

Maybe. The varying thickness of the ornamentation on these objects are consistent with a Crinoid stem, a marine animal attached to a solid substrate, or object.

Were they pure calcite, and round on the end view?

Look for them in in the literature as calcite jewelry: necklaces,, bracelets, ear-rings, etc.


9 posted on 04/28/2012 8:03:44 PM PDT by Graewoulf ((Dictator Baby-Doc Barack's obama"care" violates Sherman Anti-Trust Law, AND U.S. Constitution.))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: mamelukesabre
Architechural do-dads. I don't think they were structural.

We just glossed over that at culinary school, so I'm not completely clear on it myself.

/johnny

10 posted on 04/28/2012 8:03:53 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: JRandomFreeper
"They are small terracotta tubes with one pointed end. Put one into the other, they formed interlocking, snake-like tiles. Rows of these so-called fictile tubes were used by Roman builders to relieve the weight of vaulting,"

That makes it sound like they were structural but I don't have the slightest idea how they were used. They seem too small to have any value in a building.

11 posted on 04/28/2012 9:21:35 PM PDT by TigersEye (Life is about choices. Your choices. Make good ones.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: TigersEye
As I said, I'm not clear on it myself. And I can't think of a single expert to call tomorrow to ask about it. If you find out, ping me.

/johnny

12 posted on 04/28/2012 9:31:45 PM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: JRandomFreeper

It’s a deal. I used to work in construction but not that long ago.


13 posted on 04/28/2012 10:47:49 PM PDT by TigersEye (Life is about choices. Your choices. Make good ones.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv

Smuggeling or just old fashioned small scale capitilism?


14 posted on 04/28/2012 11:00:46 PM PDT by fella ("As it was before Noah, so shall it be again.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: mamelukesabre; JRandomFreeper

Fictile tubes (or vaulting tubes) are architectural elements that sustain and underline the shapes of cupolas and vaults. Several of these, sampled in three churches of Milan (S. Ambrogio, S. Lorenzo and Duomo) have been recently dated at the Archaeometry Laboratory of Milano Bicocca University. These architectural elements, differently shaped, styled and sampled from different structures, were all produced, according to thermoluminescence (TL), in the period 970–1080 AD.

15 posted on 04/28/2012 11:35:21 PM PDT by blam
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: Ken H; GeronL

:’)


16 posted on 04/29/2012 5:09:32 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (FReepathon 2Q time -- https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: blam; mamelukesabre; Graewoulf; JRandomFreeper; TigersEye; fella

Thanks!


17 posted on 04/29/2012 5:28:38 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (FReepathon 2Q time -- https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv
and turn up in many places such as Syracuse,

Dang, they beat Leif Erikson over here!

18 posted on 04/29/2012 5:32:00 AM PDT by Larry Lucido
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv
Vaulting Tubes explained - hot kink
19 posted on 04/29/2012 5:33:36 AM PDT by central_va ( I won't be reconstructed and I do not give a damn.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: central_va

Did you mean hot link or hot kink? Is this safe for work?


20 posted on 04/29/2012 5:34:50 AM PDT by Larry Lucido
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

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))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv
Thank you. I always read and appreciate your posts.

/johnny

22 posted on 04/29/2012 5:52:56 AM PDT by JRandomFreeper (Gone Galt)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: central_va; Larry Lucido; bert; JRandomFreeper; blam; mamelukesabre; Graewoulf; TigersEye; fella; ..

Thanks central_va.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/2877692/posts?page=19#19


23 posted on 04/29/2012 6:01:39 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (FReepathon 2Q time -- https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

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.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

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.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv

Link to picture of how they were used for vaulting. Scroll down to drawing.
http://artvent-artventures.blogspot.com/2011/02/archeology-in-sicily-part-iii-earliest.html


26 posted on 04/29/2012 7:55:18 AM PDT by La Lydia
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

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)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

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.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: TigersEye

Thanks TigersEye.


29 posted on 04/29/2012 5:44:32 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (FReepathon 2Q time -- https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

To: central_va

LOL!


30 posted on 04/29/2012 5:47:27 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (FReepathon 2Q time -- https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

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 -- https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 26 | View Replies]

To: SunkenCiv

Nice corbelled arch at Uxmal. But no dome.
http://worldheritagesites.tumblr.com/post/3204639088/mayan-corbelled-arch-uxmal-mexico


32 posted on 04/30/2012 8:29:38 PM PDT by La Lydia
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 31 | View Replies]

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.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson