The underwater archaeological exploration of a late roman shipwreck on the coast of the Istrian peninsula as part of a continuing cooperation of between Bavarian and Croatian archaeologists.
Since 1994, Bavarian and Croatian underwater archaeologists from the BGfU (Bayerische Gesellschaft für Unterwasserarchäologie) and the ICUA (International Centre for Underwater Archaeology) have been working together on different projects.
Within this cooperation, a new project called 'Rovinj Shipwrecks', which began in 2014 and started with the exploration of a late Roman shipwreck on the island
of Veliki Piruzi, also in cooperation with the tourist board of the City of Rovinj, was finished from the 5-16.6.2017.
The exploration was carried out by combining systematic underwater excavation of the wreck site with digital, non-invasive archaeological methods like structure from motion and 360° technology, to build 3D models and plans of the site.
During this year's project, in cooperation with Slovenian ZAPA, an Underwater Photogrammetry course was conducted. Students from Croatia, Slovenia and Germany participated.
Finally, all findings from the wreck site were restored, drawn and academically analysed. This led to a detailed insight into the late roman ship and a short résumé showed that it contained antiquities taken from north Africa up to the Istrian coast where it probably sank during a storm.
The 'Rovinj Shipwrecks' project
This project aims to explore several more wreck sites near the Istrian town of Rovinj in the coming years, and will gather detailed information about the origins and constitution of the antique wrecks which are known around the area and will shed light on the seafaring history of the region and antiquities.
To present the results of the exploration of the first wreck, the one from Veliki Piruzi, the publication of a monograph is planned and an exhibition in the museum of Rovinj in 2019.