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There is an ancient Roman road under the Venice lagoon

2021-07-22T16:21:21.544Z

The remains of an ancient Roman road and pier have been discovered submerged under the Venice lagoon, in the Treporti canal. Their presence, identified thanks to the mapping of the seabed with a high resolution sonar, confirms that centuries before the foundation of the city of Venice there were already stable settlements (ANSA)



The remains of an ancient Roman road and pier have been discovered submerged under the Venice lagoon, in the Treporti canal. Their presence, identified thanks to the mapping of the seabed with a high resolution sonar, confirms that centuries before the foundation of the city of Venice there were already stable settlements, with a road system crossed by wayfarers and sailors who moved between the current city of Chioggia and the ancient city of Altino, in the northern part of the lagoon.


The results of the study are published in Scientific Reports by researchers from the Institute of Marine Sciences of the National Research Council (Ismar-Cnr) and the Iuav University of Venice.


On the left, the reconstruction of the Roman road in the Treporti Canal in the Venice Lagoon, now submerged (right) (source: CNR)



"We carried out the mapping with sonar because we wanted to study the morphology of the canals in 3D, otherwise difficult to investigate. due to the turbidity of the water ", the geophysics of Cnr Fantina Madricardo told ANSA. "By examining the data collected, we noticed the presence of 12 anthropogenic structures, aligned for more than one kilometer in the north-east direction at about four meters deep".



One of these structures had already been the subject of investigation by Ernesto Canal (pioneer of archaeological research in the lagoon) and the Superintendency in 1985 who, thanks to the inspection of divers Paolo Zanetti and Eros Turcato, had discovered some amphorae and numerous basolias, the stones that the Romans used to build roads.


   Other similar stones were also documented during an inspection by the Police Divers Unit in the summer of 2020.


A tilted stone, flanked by a square stone, photographed in the summer of 2020 in the Treporti Canal (source: Luca Gagliardi, Nucleo Sommozzatori di Venezia of the State Police)

"After comparing ourselves with divers who had found similar remains in the Eighties and with the archaeologist Maddalena Bassani - continues Madricardo - we deduced that we were dealing with agglomerations of paving stones that paved a Roman road located along the sandy coast today submerged by the sea".


Closer to the lido's harbor mouth, at a depth of 11 meters, the researchers also identified four other structures: the largest measuring nearly 135 meters in length and up to 4 meters in height. "It could be a wall - hypothesizes Madricardo - probably a part of a port structure or a pier".



Research is now continuing in collaboration with archaeologists and experts from the Superintendence to better understand the nature of the finds and how the construction of large dams such as the Mose may have affected their positioning.

Source: ansa

All tech articles on 2021-07-22

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