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Lead anchor stock with solid section and an open-V profile. Rectangular both provided with a fixed retaining bar.

Although the discovery of lead logs under water is practically commonplace, in reality it has not yet been possible to establish a typological serie of this find capable of outlining a reliable chronology. Certainly the wooden anchor with lead stock is part of the large category of “grip anchors”, with lead constituting the stock with undoubted useful characteristics, such as a low melting temperature, a high specific weight, good deformability and a It has excellent resistance to marine corrosion.
Lead shackles have been documented since at least the 4th century BC. The attestations increase between the 2nd century BC. and II AD1
Anchors of this type are divided into two large categories with fixed and mobile shackle. The fixed strain can in turn be divided into three further subcategories:
a) box equipped with lead pin
b) box with wooden pin
c) cassette without pin
In any case, the fixed log was cast around the anchor spindle. Its recess or box could have different shapes. Statistically, the quadrangular one prevails, but stumps with round, oval or square boxes have been found. The different typologies of the central recess have generated some hypotheses on a possible chronology2, but the absence or presence of the pin inside the recess has also led to similar hypotheses3. Currently we are more inclined to think that the aforementioned characteristics are more responsive to technical needs rather than to a chronological evolution4.
Movable shackles, mounted on the anchor only when necessary, have not so far been found on wrecks.
Normally the length of a lead shackle is very close to that of the distance between the anchor shackles. Therefore, the probability ranges from 30-40 cm for fishing boats to 3-4 meters for large vessels5.
These finds often bear inscriptions referring to the name of the ship, the owner or dedications to deities. Relief decorations of a dedicatory or apotropaic type are often still legible.
Schizzo ricostruttivo di ancora con ceppo fisso in piombo. Da notare anche la contromarra dello stesso materiale.


1 PALLARES 1961, p. 385

2 Cfr. soprattutto KAPITAN 1971 e 1984.



5 GIANFROTTA, POMEY 1981, p. 306


Bottini P., Freschi A. 1993, Sulla rotta della Venus, Catalogo della Mostra – Maratea 1991, Taranto, Martina Franca.

Dell’Amico P. 1999, Storia e archeologia della ancore, in Navi e archeologia. Le ancore, i rostri, le sentine e i timoni, Rivista Marittima, supplemento n. 2, 1999, pp. 9-50.

Gianfrotta P. A., Pomey, P. 1981, Archeologia subacquea. Storia, tecniche, scoperte e relitti, Milano.

Kapitän G. 1971, New evidence of ancient anchors, in Archaeology 24, I, pp. 52-53.

Kapitän G. 1984, Ancient anchors: technology and classification, in International Journal of Nautical Archaeology, 13, 1, pp. 33-44.

Pallares F. 1961, Tipologia y cronologia de las anclas antigas, in Atti del III Congresso Internazionale di Archeologia Sottomarina (Barcellona, 1961), Bordighera 1971, pp. 384-393.

Perrone Mercanti M. 1979, Ancorae Antiquae: per una cronologia preliminare delle ancore del Mediterraneo, Roma.

MUSAS Ref. No.KAU-27Inv. no.R102 (2006, Ass. Kodros)DimensionsTotal length 63 cm; arms length cm 29. Internal both cm 9 x 7.MaterialsLeadLocationGarden, Archaeological Museum of Ancient CaulonOriginFound outside the restricted area, in correspondence to Km 136 of the road SS Ionica 106. GPS tracking is available.DatingStarting from the IV century B.C.Share