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The “papyrella”

It was a primitive oared boat that consisted of many fascicles of thin cane (“papyruses”) tied together with ropes. It had the form of a ship that could sail from both sides and ensured great stability, excellent floatability and allowed the transport of merchandise. Its presence in Greece is indirectly denoted by the proven commercial transactions of the residents of the Aegean Sea (e.g. transportation of obsidian from the island of Milos in the cave of Franchthi in Argolida) from 9th millenium B.C. and directly from its survival in our days in Corfu. The archaeologist, Harris Tzalas, proved, by experimenting, the possibility of realising, in a 6- metre papyrella with 6 oarsmen, a multi-day voyage of 75 nautical miles from Sounio to Milos in the open sea.

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