Italian archaeologists who are trying to uncover the first kilometer of the famous Appian Way, the longest road in ancient Rome, appeared pessimistic because groundwater makes it impossible to dig deep.
Appius Claudius Caikos began in the 4th century BC. the construction of the “queen of all roads” (regina viarum), which connected Rome with Brindisi (ancient Brindisi) in the south-eastern tip of Italy, a port of strategic importance for the wider Mediterranean area.
The “first kilometer» of the Appian Way is estimated to be approx eight meters below the surface of the earth, next to the ancient Baths of Caracalla. However, the archaeologists’ months-long effort to bring it to light is expected to be abandoned in the coming days.
Excavations reached a depth of six meters but “groundwater prevents us from going forward,” archeology professor Riccardo Santangeli Valenciani told reporters.
However, the excavation is not considered a failure since it brought to light important findings: among them an ancient Roman statue and one of the oldest coins minted in the papal mint (690-730 AD). Source: RES-MPE
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