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The conservation of a leaden anchor
The anchor of the ancient shipwreck consisted of two leaden parts; a stock and a collar. The objects were fully covered by marine depositions. Marine depositions and some parts, the latter caused by lead's corrosion, were at the surface of the finds.
The corrosive parts were white and gray in color. Anglesite, cerussite and hydrocerussite were responsible for the cause of corrosion. The marine depositions consisted of red algae, canals created by bristle worms (polychaetes), bryozoa, sediments of calcium carbonate as well as of layers of flora. The canals of the bristle worms (polychaetes) were formed by worms of the Annelida Polychaeta belonging to the family Serpulidae of Pomatoceros. In some cases the marine depositions were forming thick encrustations. Purple color, locally present, was created due to coral colonies of the family Burnades. The depositions were quite thick, strongly attached to the metal surface of the anchor. Therefore the removal was rather laborious.
The parts of the anchor have been cleaned mechanically (use of scalpel, hammer, manual vibrating electric device with a scalpel at its ending). Yet, the surface of the leaden parts of the anchor was not smooth by the end of the mechanical cleaning. The material beneath the surface layer was weathered while porosity was present, creating anomalies on the surface.
After the removal of the depositions the leaden object was dried and covered with wax for further protection of the metal from humidity and organic acids.
The conservation procedure aimed to stop the corrosion process, to recover the objects and to improve its mechanic properties as well as to aesthetically restore them.


Funding: Ministry of Culture and Sports


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Year:

01/01/2013 - 31/12/2013

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Personnel:

Smaragda Symeonidou
Conservator

Paizi Despoina, Papanikou Spyridoula
Conservators

Bibliography:

  • Ιωαννίδου Ε. Κ., Άγκυρες, βαρούλκα και ρεμέτζα στην αρχαία Ελλάδα , Ναυτική Ελλάς τεύχος 888 , έκδοση της Ελληνικής Θαλάσσιας Ένωσης, 2007
  • Florian, E.M-L, The Underwater Enviroment, in Concervation of Marine Archaelogical Objects. Pearwon, C., 1987
  • , Lamia, 1990

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