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'Completely intact' Roman sarcophagus found in Granada
By thinkSPAIN Team Thu, Jul 4, 2019
A ROMAN sarcophagus completely intact and sealed up has been described as 'an exceptional find' and 'unprecedented'.
It is being opened by experts at Granada's Archaeological Museum this weekend, and historians believe the body inside it may be almost perfectly preserved.
The ancient coffin is made of lead and has been tightly closed, with no way for air to enter it, since the Roman era, meaning once it is opened, it could be one of the few chances the world ever has to see first-hand what people from over 2,000 years really looked like.
Archaeologists have dated the sarcophagus to between the second and fourth centuries BC, and expect to find personal items and valuables inside it along with the deceased.
This completely unique finding was made on June 11 in the Plaza de Villamena in the Alhambra Palace city when builders were carrying out works on a basement.
Although it is thought to be only the second sealed-up Roman sarcophagus ever to be found, no documentation exists about the first one, which is believed to have been discovered in 1902.
To date, it is not known what was found inside it, or even whether it actually existed and was not just a rumour.
Opening the sarcophagus will be a delicate operation that cannot be carried out in a hurry, and studying and documenting what is inside it will take several months, meaning the exciting historical mystery will continue for some time.
Depending upon the contents, they may be displayed in the Granada museum once the work is completed.
Photograph taken by the regional government of Andalucía
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