Roman-era Wreck May Hold Key to Cures for Modern Disease

By:  Joe Wolverton, II
07/11/2011
       
Roman-era Wreck May Hold Key to Cures for Modern Disease

Pills found on board a 2nd century B.C. shipwreck were packed with crushed carrots, parsley, onions, alfalfa, and other vegetable matter, conforming to the recipes contained in ancient medical treatises.
 
While the texts themselves were discovered long ago, the cache of ancient pharmaceuticals found onboard the sunken ancient vessel is the first time the medicines themselves have been found.
 
The definite usefulness of the medicines is as yet unknown, but archeologists believe that these pills were likely stored on board as part of an ancient “first aid kit” for use by sailors suffering from a variety of ailments.

Pills found on board a 2nd century B.C. shipwreck were packed with crushed carrots, parsley, onions, alfalfa, and other vegetable matter, conforming to the recipes contained in ancient medical treatises.
 
While the texts themselves were discovered long ago, the cache of ancient pharmaceuticals found onboard the sunken ancient vessel is the first time the medicines themselves have been found.
 
The definite usefulness of the medicines is as yet unknown, but archeologists believe that these pills were likely stored on board as part of an ancient “first aid kit” for use by sailors suffering from a variety of ailments.

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