Namibia: team restarts work at shipwreck site

By Werner Menges


A team of local and international experts visited the site this week after its sand covering was removed on Monday, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Youth, National Service, Sport and Culture, Dr Peingeondjabi Shipoh, told The Namibian yesterday.

He said the team is expected to work at the site for a month or longer, depending on what they find at the spot.

The discovery of the remains of a wrecked ship, now believed to date from the 16th century, some 12 kilometres north of the Orange River near Oranjemund on April 1 has been trumpeted by diamond mining company Namdeb as Namibia's most important archaeological find of the century.

In an initial recovery of objects from the shipwreck site during April, artifacts that included thousands of Spanish and Portuguese gold coins, minted in the late 1400s and early 1500s, bronze cannons, more than 50 elephant tusks, several tons of copper, navigational instruments and pewter tableware were discovered at the site and removed for safekeeping.

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Dieter Noli Namibia Oranjemund Portuguese shipwreck Francisco Alves Dr Peingeondjabi Shipoh