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Research of Rovinj shipwrecks - a Roman ship near Velika Sestrica

Research of Rovinj shipwrecks - a Roman ship near Velika Sestrica

Archaeologists from the International Center for Underwater Archeology in Zadar are continuing their research as part of the multi-year project "Rovinj Shipwrecks". The project tries to emphasize the long tradition of seafaring in the Rovinj region. Through the reports of divers and fishermen and a systematic underwater inspection, the locations of ancient shipwrecks in the Rovinj archipelago are found. Individual remains of the shipwreck are being archaeologically investigated to uncover the story behind these events.

The diver returns to the ship
Digging with dredge in a trench

After the first five years of the project, the research of the Roman shipwreck near the Piruzi cliff was completed, which was accompanied by a large monograph and an accompanying exhibition in museums in Pula and Rovinj. The last few research campaigns are dedicated to the Roman shipwreck from the end of the 1st century, which is located near the island of Sestrice, south of Rovinj. Among the remains of the shipwreck, parts of amphorae of the Forlimpopoli and Santarcangelo type stand out, as well as fragments of glass bottles, oil lamps, various utensils and some metal parts of the ship's equipment.

Finding an amphora in a pit
Extraction of findings on board

Research on behalf of ICUA Zadar is led by doc.dr.sc. Luka Bekić, and have been carried out for ten years in cooperation with the Bavarian Society for Underwater Archeology. Recently, the Rovinj City Museum, the Rovinj Underwater Activities Club and the Rovinj Fire Brigade have also actively joined the research. The research is financially supported by the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Republic of Croatia and the Tourist Board of the City of Rovinj.

Cooperation with the museum and firefighters
With divers from Rovinj

In addition to research, underwater archeology courses according to the NAS (Nautical Archaeological Society) system from Great Britain are regularly held during the campaigns. They are conducted mainly for foreigners, but in 2021. ICUA Zadar trainers gave it as a gift to all interested Rovinj residents. The introductory part of the course was attended by over 20 people while the next, first module, was completed by 9 applicants. We are pleased that the course participants will be aware of the importance of underwater cultural heritage and the need to protect it. Exploration of the Rovinj seabed will continue in the coming years.

Oil lamp with theatrical masks
Exhibition in the Pula Museum
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