View Full Version : Yassıada Shipwreck-Bodrum/TURKEY

3rd January 2009, 16:36
The Byzantine Wreck

The old Spanish chapel now houses the artifacts and finds of 7th century Byzantine ship, discovered near Yassiada. This was a Roman merchant vessel with 900 amphorae. The wreck, discovered at the depth of 36 meters, was excavated from 1961 to 1964 during which archeologist had to dive 3533 times. The result of these digs were published in 1982 after the post excavation studies lasting nearly 18 years. From the pieces discovered, we estimate the ship's dimensions. It was 20 meters long with the width of 5.22 meters and loading capacity was nearly 60 tons. Rear part of the ship was beautifully reconstructed at the former chapel to give idea to the visitors.

Among the objects displayed, visitors enjoy the fishing nets, a harpoon, kitchen utensils and great number of amphorae discovered at Yassiada Wreck. The steelyard with the name of the captain "Giorgios"and the figure of Athena, goddess of Justice is certainly is one of the most interesting pieces of the museum. It is one of the biggest ever discovered up to now.

Also fifteen gold coins and bronze ones which date to time of Heraclitus give us excellent idea about the exact date of this shipwreck.

According to archeologist, the ship was sailing towards the southerly direction possibly towards Kos, Knidos ands Rhodos. From the carpenter tools we understand, ship's carpenter did basic repairs during the voyage. Gold and bronze coins indicate that captain and his staff had enough money to buy food for several months.

Sailing with a strong wind, sailors did not notice the shallow just 1 or 2 meters beneath the surface of the water. The ship hit the rocks and water penetrated into the ship through a big hole opened during the crash. Trying to advance towards the island, the ship sank at nearly 100 meters form the shore.