May 22, 2006
Egypt to Excavate Roman City Submerged in Sea
CAIRO -- The Egyptian authorities have given the go ahead for the underwater exploration of what appears to be a Roman city submerged in the Mediterranean, Egypt's top archaeologist said on Monday.
Zahi Hawass said in a statement that an excavation team had found the ruins of the Roman city 35 km (20 miles) east of the Suez Canal on Egypt's north coast.
Archaeologists had found buildings, bathrooms, ruins of a Roman fortress, ancient coins, bronze vases and pieces of pottery that all date back to the Roman era, the statement said. Egypt's Roman era lasted from 30 BC to 337 AD.
The excavation team also found four bridges that belonged to a submerged castle, part of which had been discovered on the Mediterranean coastline in 1910.
The statement said evidence indicated that part of the site was on the coast and part of it submerged in the sea. The area marked Egypt's eastern border during the Roman era.