Travel

Discovering the Lost City of Heracleion

BY Egyptian Streets TIMEOctober 23, 2014 PRINT

Article originally published at www.egyptianstreets.com

For centuries, the city of Heracleion has been shrouded in myth and thought to be a legend. The city, visited by Paris and Helen of Troy, and mentioned by numerous ancient historians such as Diodorus and Herodotus, had been lost for nearly 1,200 years until French archaeologist Franck Goddio discovered it in 2000.

Thought to have been initially founded in 12th Century BC, the city, also known as Thonis, disappeared deep beneath the surface of the earth 1,200 years ago. Today, the mythical city’s treasures continue to be unearthed. Among the lost treasures found mere kilometres off the coast of Alexandria are giant statues, slabs of stones with ancient Greek and Egyptian inscriptions, dozens of ships, gold coins, bronze statues and more. Below is a collection of photographs taken by Franck Goddio and Christoph Gerigk of what has so far been discovered.

 

Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation
Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation

 

A 5.4 meter statue of Hapi, god of flooding of the Nile. This is the largest statue dedicated to Hapi that has ever been found.

 

Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation
Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation

 

A giant granite statue of a Pharaoh.

 

Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation
Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation

A Greco-Egyptian statue thought to represent Cleopatra II or Cleopatra II as the goddess Isis.

 

Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation
Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation

A 4.8 meter statue of an unidentified Ptolemaic queen.

 

Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation
Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation

Archaeologist Frank Goddio with the Heracleion

 

Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation
Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation

A monolithic chapel dating to the Ptolemaic period.

 

Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation
Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation

 

One of the smaller treasures found in the depths of the sea

 

Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation
Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation

 

A recreation of what the city is thought to have looked like before it sank.

This article was originally published on Egyptian Streets.

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