Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Discovers Human Skeleton on Ancient Greek Shipwreck

Researchers from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, a NEC member, have discovered a human skeleton aboard a 2,100-year-old Greek shipwreck in the Aegean Sea.

The Antikythera shipwreck, originally discovered in 1900, has for decades given archeologists a look into ancient Greek life. On August 31, 2016, a team from Woods Hole, alongside researchers from Greece, discovered a whole human skeleton 160 feet below the sea. It is the first such discovery of its kind since the creation of DNA studies. DNA researchers are hopeful that genetic information can be recovered from a part of the skull, which would provide extraordinary insight into human life during that time.

“Archaeologists study the human past through the objects our ancestors created,” Brendan Foley, a Woods Hole marine archaeologist, said in a statement. “With the Antikythera Shipwreck, we can now connect directly with this person who sailed and died aboard the Antikythera ship.”

The New England Council congratulates Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution on the discovery.

Read more in The New York Times, The Boston Globe and the press release.

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