<![CDATA[A team of historians have claimed that an island off the coast of Canada has artifacts dating back to a time when the Roman Empire still ruled Europe and the Mediterranean. According to Jovan Hutton Pulitzer, lead historian on the research project, a treasure trove of Roman-era artifacts, including a head sculpture, a fragment of a shield, a handful of golden coins from ancient Carthage, a legionnaire’s whistle, and a Roman sword, was found in the wreck of a ship off the coastline of Oak Island, which itself sits off the southern shores of Nova Scotia. The historian spoke to The Express newspaper, claiming that his new find constitutes “the single most important discovery” when it comes to the Western Hemisphere’s archaeological record, adding that it could result in history books being re-written completely. North America was indeed visited much earlier than most people consider it to have been, as it has been established with relative certainty that Norse settlers led by Eric the Red inhabited a colony in what is known as Greenland today for several hundred years prior to Christopher Columbus’ 1492 voyage on behalf of the Spanish crown. However, the idea that the Romans – whose mariners were not known for vessels that strayed far from the sight of shore – would have been able to make a transatlantic voyage has left many archaeologists questioning the validity of this new find. Despite this, Pulitzer has remained steadfast in his support of his ancient Roman mariner hypothesis. He insists the origin of the sword found in the wreck is “100 per cent confirmed” to be Roman. His determination was reached after using an XRF analyzer during his forensic investigation of the weapon. The device uses X-ray fluorescence to identify the thickness and the composition of the metal being studied. Pulitzer said that the composition of the sword is consistent with it being made from ore that matches the chemical makeup of similar weapons created in the Roman era. In addition to the artifacts that Pulitzer insists are legitimate Roman-era items, he and his research team also report the discovery of burial mounds just offshore the island – mounds that the team says have been dated to the second century CE. According to the University of Wisconsin’s Professor James Scherz, the mounds discovered by Pulitzer are not consistent with Native American burial mounds but are instead similar to those found in both Ancient Europe and the Levant. Adding that he agreed with Pulitzer’s surmise that the mounds were not indigenous to Nova Scotia or other regions of North America, he opined that they could have been dug anytime between 1500 BCE to 180 CE based on known ocean level data for the time period. Detractors from Pulitzer’s claims say that the ancient Roman artifacts may indeed be legitimate, but they could have easily been lost by a more modern collector. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons user: Angelus ]]>
I’d feel a lot more comfortable about the controversial nature of this claim if there had been mention of the age and likely origins of the wreck itself, rather than its contents. So has it been determined that the ship itself of Roman origin?
You forgot Lance-Aux-Meadows as the western most Viking settlement found so far in North America. It is dated to 1000 AD. Relatively speaking it is not that far from there to Oak Island. Could a Viking have brought a Roman sword with him from Europe and lost the whole trove? Love the mystery of Oak Island. Wonder when they will seek crowdsourcing to finance further exploration.
Frankly what a disservice rendered to History with a title like that …this is for now a very unproven theory nothing else.
Frankly what a disservice rendered to History with a title like that …this is for now a very unproven theory nothing else. The whole site has been spoiled and pilfered by treasure hunters I do not believe that anything grand will come out of it.
David DeMar, didn’t you notice the appallingly bad reasoning put forward here. At least you should have checked whether Jovan Hutton Pulitzer has any credentials as an archaeologist.
I would love to read followups to this. Pictures of the artifacts, vessel remains (timber fragments, ballast stones, etc), dating info, etc. The Romans were an amazing people for their time … it’s entirely possible they made it over here.
Wait . . . now all the purported Roman stuff came from the alleged shipwreck? This story keeps getting more and more fantastical. Have you heard that the sword has “magical properties”?
What kind of History degree does he have? If he actually is a Historian, he should be showing all kinds of evidence about the sword before saying it is 100% confirmed; also showing such tests to scientists of different institutions in order to confirm that his supposed finding is authentic. There is a lot of people who doubt about the authenticity of the sword, since a similar one was found on ebay (http://www.ebay.it/itm/PARTICOLARE-SCULTURA-COMMEMORATIVA-SPADA-BRONZEA-ROMANA-CON-IMPUGNATURA-STATUA-/301746768453) and some more are for sale in Walmart, Amazon, Wayfair, etc. Also, according to him, he didn’t find the sword on a shipwreck (which is supposed to be a Roman ship but where is the evidence of that?). If he is going to do this in the Scientific way, evidence, peer review is what talks not speculation.
I’m more than a little bit disappointed to see this kind of pseudo-archaeology being posted on your site. As an archaeologist, I believe it’s imperative to call out this kind of unscientific, unconfirmed “research” which has neither been peer-reviewed nor examined by any professional archaeologists. Neither of the researchers cited in this article (and cited in other dubious internet content about this “find” has an archaeological background or training: one is a sensationalist “explorer” and the other is a professor of civil engineering. Neither is qualified to be doing this kind of work, which is probably why this bizarre, and no doubt highly unverifiable site is not being reported anywhere in the mainstream archaeological community (if such a thing as an ancient Roman North American site were real, believe me, we’d all be terribly excited about it).
Unfortunately, this kind of pseudo-archaeology is part of a long tradition claiming that “just about everything artistically, linguistically, technologically, and architecturally important came to [American Indians] from elsewhere, brought by explorers, clerics, traders, and colonizers traveling to the Americas from every other settled continent, including at least one that sank.” It is also a fine example of “half a millennium of speculation geared toward inventing a deep Old World history in the Americas, thereby challenging the primacy of American Indians in the hemisphere, or at least implying their inferiority, their poor stewardship of the land, and the need to civilize them, all in the service of Manifest Destiny and justification for taking their land.” (Quoted from a published review of “The Lost Colonies of Ancient America: A Comprehensive Guide to the Pre-Columbian Visitors Who Really Discovered America”, American Antiquity, Vol. 80, No. 3, pp 624-625, by Larry L. Zimmerman, actual archaeologist, Purdue University Indianapolis.)
In essence, these kinds of claims aren’t just profoundly unscientific and sensationalist, they are grounded in a deeply racist tradition. I’m extremely disappointed to see this published on your site.
A near exact representation of the supposed Roman sword is widely available to be purchased on eBay…
Mark K. Gardner
A quick Internet search for ” Jovan Hutton Pulitzer” strongly suggest he is no historian…
Yes, once I read that Hutton Pulitzer was behind this “SCAM” screamed out like a bull horn. Like getting an email from an African Prince asking me to hold $5 million.