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Sunken into the sea

Sicily and Underwater Archaeology

12 October 2017 - 11 March 2018

In cooperation with the Allard Pierson Museum Amsterdam, the Ashmolean Museum Oxford, the Ny Carlsberg Glyptothek Copenhagen and the Soprintendenza del Mare, Palermo

The underwater findings of sunken ships off the coast of Sicily make their worldwide important stories and history come alive. They tell of a Phoenician merchant ship more than 3,000 years old, of Punic, Roman, and Egyptian ships taking part in the Battle of the Aegates in 241 BCE, up to the times of a Byzantine merchant ship with a precious church interior.

In order to protect and research the underwater finding sites around Sicily, an globally unique institution was founded in Palermo: the Soprintendenza del Mare. Using the most up-to-date archaeological and scientific methods, it researches and secures these underwater finding sites near Sicily. Here as nowhere else in such density the cultures of Europe, Asia and Africa have intermeshed for thousands of years.

Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, Arabs, and Normans, all of them influenced the Mediterranean world with their ships. The exhibition concentrates not only on these advanced civilizations themselves, but also on those protagonists, who first made the much-invoked dialogue among the cultures in the Mediterranean possible at all: the seafarers and their vessels.

Hands-on stations and modern media provide unique insights into the often spectacular methods of modern underwater archaeology.


LVR-LandesMuseum Bonn, Colmantstr. 14-16, 53115 Bonn

Tel. +49 (0) 228 / 2070 - 0, Fax +49 (0) 228 / 2070 - 299

Opening Hours Museum

TUE - FRI, SON 11 a.m. - 6 p.m., SAT 1 p.m. - 6 p.m., MON closed

Guided tours for school groups available from 10 a.m.

Opening Hours Library

MON - FRI 8 a.m. - 4 p.m.