The wreck of an ancient Roman cargo ship from more than 2,000 years ago has been found off the coast near Rome, the arts squad of Italy's Carabinieri police said on Friday.
The ship was located off the port of Civitavecchia, about 80 kilometers (50 miles) north-west of the Italian capital, on a sandy seabed at a depth of about 160 meters (525 ft), a statement said.
The vessel, estimated to be more than 20 meters long and dating from the 1st or 2nd century BC, was carrying hundreds of amphorae -- a type of ancient Roman jar -- that were mostly found intact.
"The exceptional discovery is an important example of the shipwreck of a Roman ship facing the perils of the sea in an attempt to reach the coast, and bears witness to old maritime trading routes," the Carabinieri said.
How was the vessel found?
The relic was located and filmed using a remotely operated robot, they said. It was not immediately clear whether any attempt would be made to recover it or its cargo from the bottom of the sea.