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2,000-year-old amphora found on Ses Salines beach in Ibiza

A 2,000-year-old amphora was found at the entrance to one of the coves located between Ses Salines beach and the Ses Portes Tower, a place that is very popular with tourists and residents alike.

2,000-year-old amphora found on Ses Salines beach in Ibiza
Credit: Albert Prats
The discovery was made by Professor Albert Prats, former Minister of the Environment, who called the archaeologists who, with the authorisation of the Council of Ibiza, removed the artefact because it was in danger as it was in a causeway.

Archaeologists Juanjo Marí, Almudena García-Rubio and Glenda Graziani, from the Archaeological Association of Ibiza and Formentera (ASEF), were in charge of removing the artefact, which is now in the Pitiusa Archaeological Museum (MAEF).

According to the Consell de Ibiza (Council of Ibiza), this is a Punic amphora made on Ibiza and dated between 0 and 50 AD.

Archaeologist Glenda Graziani said that although it is assumed that Ses Salines was frequented in ancient times, "few studies have been conducted in this enclave".

2,000-year-old amphora found on Ses Salines beach in Ibiza
Credit: Albert Prats
For the archaeologist, the fact that this artefact has been found in such a busy place indicates that it is an area "that should be studied more closely". It is a type of amphora that was used to transport the wine produced on the island, Graziani explained.

Archaeologist Juanjo Marí has stressed that it is common for these amphoras to be found whole at sea, in wrecks, sunken ships or tombs. "The fact that a whole amphora is found in a context that is neither funerary nor a sunken ship is quite strange," he said.

As for the find, Prats explained that, at first, he observed a ceramic fragment about 10 centimetres wide that was grooved and that when he removed some sand from it, he saw that it was a larger piece and decided to contact the archaeologists.

Graziani pointed out that, fortunately, in this case the person who made the discovery was "someone with interest, with the capacity for analysis and with vision, because anyone could have found it and this amphora would end up in a house or on the black market".

2,000-year-old amphora found on Ses Salines beach in Ibiza
Credit: Albert Prats
With regard to this type of accidental or fortuitous discovery, the curator of the Archaeological Museum of Eivissa and Formentera (MAEF) Maria Bofill has indicated that the authorities should be notified, whether the Civil Guard, the Council or the town halls, without touching or removing any archaeological material.

In this case, the Council of Ibiza has authorised the removal without following the usual permit procedure because it was "dangerous to leave it there", she added. "The amphora is in one piece and in a very good state of conservation," Bofill said.

Source: EFE [Trsl. TANN, July 01, 2020]


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