Ancient oil amphora found in Swiss riverbed

Posted On September 27, 2021
Categories Uncategorized

An archaeologist in Aegerten, northwest Switzerland, recently discovered a 2,000-year-old amphora, a ceramic vessel that was used to transport olive oil in Roman times.

The amphora was found this spring in the bed of the old Zihl river. It was largely intact when it came to light, and has now been restored, the Bernese Department of Education and Culture said on Friday.

The vessel is 73 centimetres high and 50 centimetres wide. It probably held at least 65 litres when full and is assumed to date from the first century AD.

Olive oil from the Roman province of Baetica – the region around the valley of the Guadalquivir in Andalusia, southern Spain – reached its destination in amphorae of this type, according to the statement. Distribution of these vessels extended from the western Mediterranean to Britain.

“The vessel is thus an indication of the adoption of Roman culture by the Celtic population on the Swiss plateau, who even then valued imported olive oil,” writes the Bernese Department of Education and Culture.

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