Surprisingly the skeleton was preserved.

Scientists have found a 2,000-year-old skeleton at the site of an ancient shipwreck that may offer new clues to the lives of its ill-fated passengers.

“There’s a very small handful of ancient shipwrecks in the [Mediterranean] that have created human remains.”

The boat was a merchant vessel in the first century B.C., and scientists have been amazed by how intact the human remains are after 2,000 years, according to a statement.

The wreck was first found by sponge divers in 1900, in Antikythera, Greece, and it has become a preeminent website for deepwater archaeology. Foley’s team first began its expedition in 2010, though they didn’t begin diving as they went to prepare for the dangerous 165-feet dive.

Foley has a theory as to how the bones have remained so well preserved, rather than disintegrating or being eaten by fish.
skull-shipwreck-skeletons0916Courtesy of Brett Seymour, EUA/WHOI/ARGO

The boat—at 40 meters (130-feet) long, in accordance with the archeologist—was extraordinarily big for the time. Many trading boats were transporting grains available, and individuals on the lower levels may happen to be trapped inside, sinking to the ocean floor where their remains were buried under the grains, maintaining them for two millennia, as the ship was wrecked.
shipwreck-remains-skeleton0916Courtesy of Brett Seymour, EUA/WHOI/ARGO

Foley and his team’s discovery is unique, what their socioeconomic and health background might have been, and even as it offers the chance for scientists to use DNA analysis to learn more about the passengers, including where they were from, what they looked like.

The researchers have previously made 3D models of the bones from Autodesk modeling applications with help to aid in their own work.