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Cross-section of the hull of a cargo ship

Florence, Opera Laboratori Fiorentini

In recent decades underwater archaeology has brought to light a substantial number of Roman shipwrecks, some still loaded with amphorae. Sometimes found still sealed, the amphorae were placed vertically in special housings, embedded and fixed with juniper branches stuffed around them to avoid problems during navigation. These finds have added greatly to our knowledge of the architecture of Roman ships, the different kinds of wood employed and the techniques applied to join the parts.