Saturday, 5 November 2022

2000 Years Old Roman Ship Discovered off the Coast of Sukosan near Zadar

November 5, 2022 - For more than two thousand years, at a depth of two meters, covered in sand, a Roman ship lay untouched in the sea near Sukosan.

Zadarski reports that although it has long been speculated that the seabed of the ancient harbor at the Barbir site has been hiding many riches, the Zadar river archeologists only recently, after six years of systematic research, came to a great discovery: a Roman ship from the 1st century emerged from under the layers of sand! It is about three meters wide, while nine meters of its length have been discovered so far. Apart from the parts that were eaten by shipworm, the rest of the ship is in incredibly good condition thanks to the fact that the wood itself has been preserved in the sand for two millennia.

"The ancient port of Barbir was discovered in 1973 and for a long time was documented only superficially, thanks to the research of Boris Ilakovec. Only in 2017 did new, more serious work begin in that area, in parallel with the research of the Roman villa on the mainland, which was largely destroyed due to modern construction. Fortunately, part of the site under the sea has been well preserved", reveals Mladen Pešić, the leader of this research and the director of the International Centre for Underwater Archaeology. In the last six years, for as long as the research under the sea has lasted, the centre has cooperated with the German Archaeological Institute, but also with other partners such as Oxford, the University of Zadar, the Archaeological Museum...

First, they investigated the structure of the Roman pier, which was built in two phases. The first one dates from the 1st century AD when the port was smaller. This is evidenced by numerous finds of ceramic vessels and amphorae, oil lamps and fragments of glass that came to Sukosan from different parts of the Mediterranean - from the area of ​​present-day Greece, Turkey, the Middle East and Italy - on the routes of maritime trade links. A major expansion took place in the middle of the 4th century, when the present-day shape of the tongue was formed, which is still there, despite the long exposure to the sea. Evidence of intensive trade during that time is also shown by finds from North Africa. Among the finds from that period, thirty bronze coins stand out, minted during the reign of the emperors Constantine II, Constans and Constantius II, which were found in a layer 150 centimeters below the level of the present-day seabed. It was during these investigations that the archaeologists found a piece of wood, a board with a metal nail, which particularly intrigued them the year before last.

"We were hoping that there could be a ship next to that board. That's why last year we opened the first four squares, each with an area of ​​four square metres, and started researching at that location. And indeed, there was a Roman ship there that we dated to the end of the 1st or the very beginning of the 2nd century, i.e. following to the first phase of the port. This year, the research continued, again in cooperation with the German Archaeological Institute and the University of Zadar and archeology students. The team was not large, but it was very interesting" Pešić said for Zadarski.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated Lifestyle section.

Friday, 16 September 2022

Roman Era Harbour Equipment Discovered in Istrian Waters

September the 16th, 2022 - A remarkable find in the Istrian waters as important and obviously ancient Roman era harbour equipment is discovered and archaeological research is now being carried out.

As Morski writes, a team from the Archaeological Museum of Istria in the City of Pula is currently conducting underwater archaeological research in the area of ​​the old Barbariga beach, more precisely at the location of the Roman port. The leader of the research is Dr. Ida Koncani Uhac.

What is of great interest to this team of underwater archaeologists are the remains of an ancient pice of harbour equipment lying in the waters of Barbariga bay, which most likely served the nearby ancient oil mill as part of the operational piece of coast for loading and transporting oil by sea. Back during the 1950s, archaeologist Stefan Mlakar from the Pula AMI researched the site of the Barbariga oil mill.

In the Barbariga cove, located under the sea, a team of archaeologists and divers have established a monumental structure spanning an impressive length of 57 metres, preserved in situ in three rows of stone blocks, and the foundation block was also established by probing. The width of the structure is from 16 to 24 metres, with an L-shaped protrusion. The port device is built of stone blocks measuring 3.1 metres by 2.6 metres in total.

The results of this research so far are another confirmation that the area of ​​the town of Vodnjan was known for the production of high-quality olive oil even back during ancient times. The locality of Barbariga - an oil mill in the hinterland of the bay, once boasted 20 presses, which made it the largest oil mill in all of Istria, and probably beyond. The site is dated to the 1st century. At the nearby Punta Barbariga, there are also the remains of a Roman peristyle villa. According to estimates, an oil mill of that size processed olives planted on an area of ​​240 to 300 hectares, and the size of the entire property is estimated to span around 900 hectares.

Large quantities of building ceramics, fragments of tableware and kitchenware, and amphorae were also found in these Istrian waters. Among the findings, amphorae stand out. Most of the findings can be quite easily dated back to the 1st century, which corresponds to the nearby site of an ancient oil mill.

This interesting research is being carried out as part of the "Istrian Underwater/Istarsko podmorje" project, which involves the documentation, listing and topography of all underwater sites related to Roman history.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Saturday, 14 May 2022

Zadar Archaeologists Discover Emperor Trajan's 2000 Year Old Legacy

May the 14th, 2022 - Zadar archaeologists have discovered an utterly incredible find in the form of the almost 2000 year old legacy of former Roman emperor Trajan.

As Morski writes, a hugely unusual discovery has been come upon b Zadar archaeologists in that popular coastal Dalmatian city. Construction in an industrial zone was stopped by conservators, assuming that the route of the former ancient aqueduct of the Roman city of Jadera (modern day Zadar) is located on that very site.

The investor had to hire archaeologists, and they did find the remains of the 40-kilometre-long ancient Zadar aqueduct, RTL reports.

Trajan went to war against the Dacians

So far, the longest section of the Roman aqueduct, which fed Zadar from the Biba spring near Vrana Lake, was found in the middle of the industrial zone at the eastern entrance to Zadar, and the head of Archaeological Research Smiljan Gluscevic said the following:

This aqueduct is thought to have originated sometime in the early second century when Emperor Trajan came from Italy, more precisely from Ancona, to Zadar with his army. He went to war against the Dacians, and we know this from a partially preserved inscription from Trajan's time that the plan was to construct that aqueduct.

Today's Five Wells Square (Trg pet bunara)

The plateau is a castellum aquae or fortress of water. It is assumed that all the water that used to come from Vrana Lake eventually arrived at this place, that is, to one large cistern that had five well crowns, which is today's Five Wells Square, a well known point in the City of Zadar.

After all of the necessary research is fully conducted by the present team of Zadar archaeologists, the conservators will decide whether and how the aqueduct will be presented or whether it will be protected and re-covered with earth once again.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Tuesday, 1 June 2021

Rab Archaeology Project Sees Tour Guides Offered Free Training

June the 1st, 2021 - As part of a local Rab archaeology project called Rab Archaeological (T)races, which will be held from the 14th to the 17th of June, the island's tourist guides are set to be offered free extra education in order to boost their knowledge and as such their service.

As Morski writes, the free educational and training sessions for tourist, mountain and cycling guides operating in the area of ​​the island of Rab is set to be held as the aforementioned Rab archaeology project is set to happen. As part of that, all interested tourist and cultural workers can also freely apply for the course in order to refresh their memories or boost their existing knowledge of this topic on the island.

This free training and additional education option doesn't replace the licenses required for guided tours of Rab's trails and sites, and it will be led by archaeologists Dr. sc. Ana Konestra from the Institute of Archeology and Ranko Starac, the curator of the Maritime and Historical Museum of the Croatian Littoral in Rijeka.

Due to the limited number of participants in this training sessions, licensed guides will have priority in the application process. Those who are interested in getting on this free training course can apply no later than June the 10th via: 099 / 814-0712 or by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Rab Archaeological (T)races project has arranged three educational hiking and biking trails covering a total length of 40 kilometres, where archaeological, sacral and ethno heritage hidden in untouched landscapes all over the island of Rab will be presented at 33 different locations, and an interactive mobile application (app) has been created precisely for this project that can be used for individuals exploring the island themselves or as an aid for organised guides.

For more, make sure to follow our lifestyle page. For all you need to know about Croatia's many islands and how to pick the right one for your holiday, make sure to check out our dedicated section.

Monday, 26 February 2018

Vižula Peninsula Entrance Closed for Archaeological Park Renovation

Medulin will up its game from sea and sunshine to history, culture and above all - archaeology.

Saturday, 30 September 2017

Archaeological Museum in the Works for Pridvorje!

A praiseworthy project for one tiny Konavle settlement...

Sunday, 2 April 2017

Top 20 Archaeological Destinations in Croatia Named in New Travel Guide

“Top 20 Archaeological Destinations in Croatia" is the first publication resulting from the cooperation of the sector of tourism and archaeology. 

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