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Replica of Ma’agan Michael Ship Sails Again

(Photo: Haifa University/ASHERNET)

After spending nearly two years building a replica of a 2,500-year-old ship, the University of Haifa and the Israel Antiquities Authority sailed this replica on the Haifa Bay over the weekend.

Archaeologists taking part in the restoration project were hoping to learn how ancient mariners sailed against the winds and currents, especially as they lacked today’s technological solutions.

The archaeologists had recovered a carpenter’s toolbox at the shipwreck. They used it to build the replica using the same materials, working methods, and tools that were used 2,500 years ago.

“It’s hard to admire it when you see the ship completed and it looks like a prop from a movie,” Avner Hillman, an IAA archaeologist, said at Friday’s ceremony. “But if you go into the belly of this ship and understand that inside it there are close to 10,000 bolts, and tens of thousands of nails, and those are among the dynamics we had no idea how to do two years ago.”

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