Marine archaeologists will begin work in June to uncover the sand-buried hull of a 2,300 year old cargo ship thought to have been ferrying wine from the Aegean island of Chios before it sank off Cyprus' southern coast.
The vessel, dating from the 4th century BC is one of only a few such ships to have been found so well-preserved, said University of Cyprus visiting marine archaeologist Stella Demesticha.
The wreck rests on the seabed at a depth of 144 feet some 1 1/2 miles off the island's southern coast.
Demesticha said the wreck was also unique because it lies at a depth that divers can easily reach, unlike similar discoveries found in deeper waters.
Underwater photographs that researchers took of the vessel on initial surveying dives in November show a jumble of dozens of amphorae — clay urns used in antiquity to carry liquids and solid foodstuffs — lying on the seabed in the shape of the ship.
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