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Florida State Professor Hoping to Find Roman-Era Pirate Ships
AP ^ | July 4, 2004

Posted on 07/04/2004 4:18:32 PM PDT by nuconvert

Florida State Professor Hoping to Find Roman-Era Pirate Ships

By David Royse/Associated Press

Jul 4, 2004

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - When the Roman Empire got tired of pirates terrorizing shipping lanes and nearly bringing the known world's trade to a halt, it went after them hard. Roman general Pompey reportedly took just 40 days to locate and wipe out the ships and crews that were preying on shipping. It has taken much, much longer for modern scientists to again find the pirates of the eastern Mediterranean.

Cheryl Ward, an anthropology professor at Florida State University, hopes she's on the verge of locating some of the pirate ships that were a thorn in the side of the Romans 2,100 years ago.

Finding one or more them may help provide a unique window into what the larger world looked like at the time.

Ward is the main investigator in a major archaeological mission that will be trying this month to find evidence of the ships in the shallow water off the southern coast of Turkey.

The dream would be to actually locate one of their vessels, known as hemioliae - rowed ships that were the terror of the 1st century. Researchers know what they look like from Roman descriptions, but none has ever been discovered.

Ward and her colleagues hope to paint a picture of a different class of people than that of the Roman Empire, about which much is already known. That knowledge comes from what the educated, wealthy Romans left in written records and artifacts.

The pirates were the underclass.

"These were a bunch of unemployed guys," Ward said Friday, preparing to leave for Turkey. "They turned to piracy. It was easy money.

"What's the story of these people from what they left behind?"

First, her team has to find some remnants of their lives. "We would love to find a shipyard," she said.

Ward will be exploring nearshore areas along the Turkish coast that used to be dry before erosion pushed back the shore. But she said she'd settle for parts of just one ship.

Pompey had 120,000 men and 270 ships looking for pirates. Ward has a few graduate students and some fellow researchers from a Turkish university.

But the pirate project has become a big topic in the archaeological world and her work is part of a larger project. Researchers working on land also are studying the area of Turkey known as Cilicia - where many pirates were based.

Aside from the prospect of finding museum artifacts from the Roman era, Ward said contemporary man can learn a lot by studying societies of the past.

"Archaeology is telling the story of environmental degradation, of the collapse of civilizations, of the rise of ... new practices," Ward said.

And there may be parallels to today's global relations, said Meredith Marten, a graduate student working with Ward.

"If you can see how these people were subordinated or just kind of kept on the periphery, you can understand why these people would take such drastic measures," Marten said.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: archaeology; economic; ggg; godsgravesglyphs; history; pirate; ships; turkey

1 posted on 07/04/2004 4:18:33 PM PDT by nuconvert
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To: nuconvert

Those pirates sound like Kerry supporters. The Dems in Florida must be really desperate if they're trying to find them.


2 posted on 07/04/2004 5:22:37 PM PDT by VisualizeSmallerGovernment (Question Liberal Authority)
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To: AdmSmith; F14 Pilot

Pirate Pong


3 posted on 07/04/2004 6:54:21 PM PDT by nuconvert ( "Let Freedom Reign !" ) ( Azadi baraye Iran)
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To: nuconvert

thanks for posting this story
I like that stuff


4 posted on 07/04/2004 8:24:01 PM PDT by Flavius ("... we should reconnoitre assiduosly... " Vegetius)
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To: *Gods, Graves, Glyphs; blam; FairOpinion; farmfriend; StayAt HomeMother; SunkenCiv; 24Karet; ...
Thanks nuconvert.
Please FREEPMAIL me if you want on or off the "Gods, Graves, Glyphs" PING list --
Archaeology/Anthropology/Ancient Cultures/Artifacts/Antiquities, etc.

5 posted on 07/21/2004 8:20:32 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (Unlike some people, I have a profile. Okay, maybe it's a little large...)
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To: VisualizeSmallerGovernment

Obviously the pirates did this because they felt marginalized. It clearly had nothing to do with easy riches. Finding a few remaining timbers of their ships will confirm this fact for us.

Bush lied - first century Romans died.


6 posted on 07/21/2004 8:31:15 AM PDT by linear
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To: nuconvert

The whole history of humanity is one group of people trying to take something off another group of people. Competition for resources. Fighting for that slot on the corporate ladder by pushing someone else off. Oh, never mind!


7 posted on 07/21/2004 8:36:08 AM PDT by Ciexyz ("FR, best viewed with a budgie on hand")
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To: linear
Bush lied - first century Romans died.

Women and children hit hardest!

8 posted on 07/21/2004 8:58:01 AM PDT by night reader
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To: night reader

Tom Daschle's ancestors were deeply saddened.


9 posted on 07/21/2004 9:05:37 AM PDT by linear
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To: night reader

And minorities.


10 posted on 07/21/2004 9:06:47 AM PDT by Little Ray (John Ffing sKerry: Just a gigolo!)
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To: Little Ray

Peripheral minorities.


11 posted on 07/21/2004 10:26:31 AM PDT by norton
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To: nuconvert

Interesting. I seem to recall Roman artifacts being found in Texas sometime in the last thirty years or so, but no explanation as to how they came to be there.


12 posted on 07/21/2004 10:29:19 AM PDT by Badeye ("The day you stop learning, is the day you begin dying")
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To: nuconvert
"They turned to piracy. It was easy money.

I don't think a pirate's life was that easy. Sail for months on end with a bunch of cutthroat, scrappy mates. Eat gruel for the entire trip, not sure when your next paycheck would be, or when you would be captured or killed.

I think the professor has the easier job.

13 posted on 07/21/2004 10:33:23 AM PDT by stainlessbanner (quis custodiet ipsos custodies)
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To: nuconvert
And there may be parallels to today's global relations, said Meredith Marten

Duh. There are still pirates today, dear Meredith. They run drugs, capture lone boats and ships, and are heavily armed.

14 posted on 07/21/2004 10:36:45 AM PDT by stainlessbanner (quis custodiet ipsos custodies)
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To: nuconvert
I will prove very interesting. Compared to what we know of the ruling classes and the military, we know very little of the commoner. I have to disagree with this comment, obviously tossed in to help draw funding:
"If you can see how these people were subordinated or just kind of kept on the periphery, you can understand why these people would take such drastic measures," Marten said.

Unless we find written records - preferably dairies - a ship wreck won’t shed much light on it, and as to “why these people would take such drastic measures," it’s a bit obvious. People turn to piracy when they want what they don’t have. Piracy offered travel, adventure and monetary rewards. In those days it was a common occupation. Most traders outside the Roman Empire were pirates when the opportunity presented itself.
15 posted on 07/21/2004 10:38:01 AM PDT by R. Scott (Humanity i love you because when you're hard up you pawn your Intelligence to buy a drink.)
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To: nuconvert

Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate's life for me.
We pillage plunder, we rifle and loot.
Drink up me 'earties, yo ho.
We kidnap and ravage and don't give a hoot.
Drink up me 'earties, yo ho.

Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate's life for me.
We extort and pilfer, we filch and sack.
Drink up me 'earties, yo ho.
Maraud and embezzle and even highjack.
Drink up me 'earties, yo ho.

Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate's life for me.
We kindle and char and in flame and ignite.
Drink up me 'earties, yo ho.
We burn up the city, we're really a fright.
Drink up me 'earties, yo ho.

We're rascals and scoundrels, we're villians and knaves.
Drink up me 'earties, yo ho.
We're devils and black sheep, we're really bad eggs.
Drink up me 'earties, yo ho.

We're beggars and blighters and ne'er do-well cads,
Drink up me 'earties, yo ho.
Aye, but we're loved by our mommies and dads,
Drink up me 'earties, yo ho.
Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate's life for me.

bump...


16 posted on 07/21/2004 10:39:26 AM PDT by Hatteras
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To: nuconvert
Arrus, Arri, Arro, Arrum, Arro, Arri, Arre!
17 posted on 07/21/2004 10:48:04 AM PDT by Physicist
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To: nuconvert

Acient ships are being discovered in the Black Sea fully preserved. Because of the lack of oxygen in the BS there are no wood destroying organisms.


18 posted on 07/21/2004 10:54:54 AM PDT by Oystir
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To: Badeye

She is an anthropology professor at Florida State University. She is searching off the coast of Turkey.

Hadn't heard about the Texas/Roman discovery. That's interesting.


19 posted on 07/21/2004 11:03:46 AM PDT by nuconvert (Had this been an actual emergency, we would have fled in terror and you wouldn't have been notified.)
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To: Physicist

Well said....I think.


20 posted on 07/21/2004 11:05:48 AM PDT by nuconvert (Had this been an actual emergency, we would have fled in terror and you wouldn't have been notified.)
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To: nuconvert

"Hadn't heard about the Texas/Roman discovery. That's interesting."

Can't recall where I read about it, and it was years ago. Haven't heard anything since.


21 posted on 07/21/2004 11:06:49 AM PDT by Badeye ("The day you stop learning, is the day you begin dying")
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To: nuconvert
Just listing the ways in which a Roman pirate would say, "Arrr!"
22 posted on 07/21/2004 11:14:14 AM PDT by Physicist
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To: nuconvert

Sounds like Piracy is Kerry's dream for full employment.


23 posted on 07/21/2004 4:04:06 PM PDT by Henchman (I Hench, therefore I am!)
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To: Physicist

Flunko, fluncti, flunctum. And do not forget Hic Haic Hoc Hocktui Splat.


24 posted on 07/21/2004 4:06:02 PM PDT by Henchman (I Hench, therefore I am!)
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