What many people believed to be a metal only known to legends and lore has turned out to be real. The legendary metal known as Orichalcum has been found in a six-century shipwreck on the seafloor near Sicily. 39 ingots of the legendary metal were found in the haul.
The ship was said to have sank 2,600 years ago off the coast of Sicily. Discovery mentioned that it’s possible the ship was coming from Greece or Asia minor and was caught in a storm, only to sink as it was ready to enter the port. Sebastiano Tusa, of Sicily’s superintendent of the Sea office told Discovery “The wreck dates to the first half of the sixth century. “It was found about 1,000 feet from Gela’s coast at a depth of 10 feet.”
“Nothing similar has ever been found,” Tusa said. “We knew orichalcum from ancient texts and a few ornamental objects.” Up until now, the metal has only been a legend and has frequently been featured in role-playing video games as a metal used to craft some of the best armor and weapons in the game.
The importance of this metal is that it gives researchers another clue into the existence of the lost city Atlantis. The belief of the city is often up for debate, as some say it’s real, some say it’s simply legend. One belief is that the stories of the “Island of Atlas” are based off of this location and was drowned by rising sea levels or a tsunami.
The legend of Atlantis tends to date back to the work of Greek philosopher, Plato. He believed that Atlantis was submerged by the gods once it was no longer needed by them or broke trust. In Atlantis, Orichalcum was meant to be second to gold in terms of value and it covered all of Poseidon’s temple.
Hopefully more will be known in the near future regarding this massive find. It’s likely that more dives will be made in the coast off of Sicily to explore more of the area in attempts to find more of the wreck, or at least similar finds.