In 241 B.C., off the northwest coast of Sicily in the Egadi Islands, Roman warships ensnared a Carthaginian fleet loaded with supplies, defeated it, and brought an end to the First Punic War. This victory provided Rome with its first overseas territory, Sicily, and launched Rome on a path of Mediterranean conquest. Underwater archaeologist Jeffrey G. Royal speaks about the exciting discovery of remains from the Battle of the Egadi Islands—including rams, helmets, and amphoras—and the new insights they provide about warship construction, ship-to-ship engagements, armor types, state organization, and fleet operations in the ancient world. This program is presented in conjunction with the exhibition Sicily: Art and Invention between Greece and Rome on view at the Getty Villa April 3 through August 19, 2013.
About Jeffrey G. Royal
Jeffrey G. Royal earned his Ph.D. in anthropology from Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas and is currently Director of RPM Nautical Foundation in Key West, Florida. Royal's research ranges from the Roman through Late Antiquity periods, and his current projects focus on the assessment of warships, strategies, and tactics used in the Mediterranean during the Roman era, Roman-era exchange, and overseas trade in the Adriatic Sea in antiquity. He has directed numerous underwater projects in Sicily with the Soprintendenza del Mare, as well as in Italy, Spain, Morocco, Turkey, Albania, Montenegro, and Israel. Royal serves as adjunct professor in the Maritime Studies Program at East Carolina University, Greenville.