The discovery of some 60 shipwrecks "dating back to Bible times," resting on the Black Sea floor off the coast of Bulgaria, may shed light on the Biblical story of the great flood and Noah’s Ark, the Daily Star reports.
According to the newspaper, scientists from the Black Sea Maritime Archaeology Project believe that soil samples extracted from this site, located 300 meters below the surface and now known as the "dead zone", might help explain the origins of this myth.
The theory, outlined in the book titled "Noah’s Flood" penned by Walter Pitman and William Ryan, postulates that Black Sea was originally just a freshwater lake separated from the Mediterranean Sea by a massive land bridge, and that the erosion of said land bridge triggered a rapid rise of water levels in the Black Sea.
The newspaper points out, however, that this theory hasn’t yet been scientifically proven, with Zdravka Georgieva, a maritime archaeologist at Bulgaria’s Centre for Underwater Archaeology, arguing that the preliminary data points in a different direction.
"The geophysicists and other specialists from the oceanographic centre in Southampton, say there’s no evidence to support this theory. What we collected doesn’t prove this catastrophic flood. Data shows a more likely gradual sea level rising," she said.
Nevertheless, deep-sea explorer Dr. Bob Ballard noted that “the Black Sea has that [the biblical connection]", and that “there’s so much more to be discovered” there.
"I think you’re going to see the Black Sea yielding a lot of additional chapters of human history now we know where to look and how to look," he remarked.