After the discovery in the Mediterranean and a year of collaboration following UNESCO guidelines, OceanX delivered the amphora for study by the University of Malta
NEW YORK, Sept. 22, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- On September 18, 2023, global non-profit exploration organization OceanX handed over an ancient amphora discovered by chance on the seabed to Maltese heritage authorities of the Mediterranean during a dive with a remotely controlled vehicle (ROV) in the summer of 2022. This delivery is an example of how a non-governmental research entity executes the delivery of a discovered artifact through the appropriate channels according to the rules established by the UNESCO. A handover ceremony was held at Fort St. Angelo in Malta and was attended by Dr. Owen Bonnici, Minister of Cultural Heritage of Malta, together with representatives from OceanX, Heritage Malta and the Superintendency of Cultural Heritage.
The amphora was unexpectedly found by university students participating in OceanX's flagship educational program, Young Explorers, while piloting an ROV about 3,510 meters below the ocean's surface. Professional ROV pilots then took over and carefully moved the amphora from the seabed to a replicated aquatic environment aboard the OceanXplorer, the most advanced marine research and media vessel ever built. OceanX immediately reported the discovery of the amphora to the authorities of the nearby port of Malta. Since then, OceanX has collaborated with Malta's heritage authorities to follow best practices for the conservation, desalination and delivery of the artifact. After delivery, archaeologists will investigate the object to try to determine its role in the shipping lanes of Late Antiquity.
"OceanX adheres to high ethical standards and internationally recognized best practices regarding the collection, preservation and legitimate ownership of historically significant artifacts," said Vincent Pieribone, Joint CEO and Chief Scientific Officer of OceanX. "We are especially grateful for the collaboration and guidance provided to us by the respected team at Heritage Malta in helping us deliver the amphora to its relevant jurisdiction carefully and in accordance with regulations. We look forward to the artifact being fully restored, conserved and researched so that everyone can see and know him."
This collaboration between OceanX and the Republic of Malta represents a significant step forward for international cooperation around scientific research and respect for the authenticity and integrity of cultural property, as established by the UNESCO Convention on the Protection of Heritage Underwater Cultural 2001.
"The delivery of the amphora by OceanX to Malta is an excellent example of good practice in the field of underwater cultural heritage and its management. This object will now be available to students and experts to continue shedding light on the maritime past of the ancient Mediterranean," indicated Dr. Timmy Gambin, Professor of Maritime Archeology at the University of Malta.
Over the last decade, OceanX has made important advances in ocean research and data collection and distribution, supporting the efforts of local scientists and facilitating a deeper understanding of the oceans across the European Union and Worldwide.
For media inquiries related to OceanX, please contact Adriana Torres-Plaza at email@example.com.
About OceanX OceanX's mission is to help scientists explore the ocean and share it with the world through engaging media. Bringing together leading partners from media, science and philanthropy, OceanX uses cutting-edge technology, bold science, compelling storytelling and immersive experiences to educate, inspire and connect the world to the ocean and build community global company deeply committed to understanding, enjoying and protecting our oceans. OceanX is an initiative of Dalio Philanthropies, which promotes the diverse philanthropic interests of members of the Dalio family. For more information, visit www.oceanx.org and follow OceanX on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and LinkedIn.
About Heritage MaltaHeritage Malta, guardian of more than 8,000 years of history, is the national agency for museums, conservation practice and cultural heritage. With a portfolio spanning archaeological sites, baroque lodges and palaces, catacombs, fortresses, natural landscapes and UNESCO-listed Neolithic monuments, Heritage Malta is the face of the Maltese islands. More than simply advancing the stock of intellectual and cultural capital, our vocation is to offer a mirror to society through a heritage that is "Part of Us", because we are our history, and this is our cultural identity. Every generation, monument, artifact, language, specimen and celebration has a story to share. Heritage Malta ensures that these stories are preserved for posterity and made accessible so that everyone, everywhere, can experience and enjoy them.
Contact: Adriana Torres Plaza Telephone: (347) 603-0154 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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