posted on Aug, 25 2012 @ 11:43 PM
Originally posted by SLAYER69
reply to post by Harte
Thanks for jumping in.
Do you have a link to the information of them only being at sea for 6 months or so?
Any information provided would be appreciated.
Thanks in advance
Not only was wood scarce and expensive in Egypt, but on the Red Sea coast it must have been like gold dust. That was why these great caves were
dug into the cliff, to protect the precious wood against the elements and against beduin who, from their camps out in the desert, must have viewed all
this timber with covetous eyes. A single plank, stolen from the assembly site, could have provided tool handles and tent poles for a whole tribe - but
the loss of that same plank could have jeopardised an entire year's trading as men set off across the desert to find a replacement for the ship's keel
It wasn't only assembly, however. When the ships came back from Punt they could not be left to the tender mercies of wind and weather. Instead they
were dragged ashore, taken apart and stored back in the caves where timbers riddled with shipworms could be noted and replaced. (The discovery of wood
so affected is evidence that the voyage to Punt must have taken several months, perhaps as many as six.) In addition, as Khufu's boat shows us, the
timbers were held together by tightened ropes which were undoubtedly damaged by the working of the ships in the waves of the open ocean and further
weakened by exposure to sea air and damp. The ropes too had to be examined and replaced where necessary. Some of the Wadi Gawasis timbers, however,
bore traces of being held together with copper straps. These may have been more resistant to water damage than fibre ropes, but they too would be
damaged by the working of the ships in rough seas.
That's a Biblical Archaeology site. I don't like using those guys, but it's the first one that came up.
Try including the term "shipworm" in your google search.
If I llooked long enough, I could probably find the original source. Might even be here at ATS already.
Hah, the next hit down from the one I used - from 2006:
Shipworms that had tunneled into the planks indicated that the ships had weathered a voyage of several months, likely to the fabled southern Red
Sea trading center of Punt — a place 1,000 miles to the south — which is referenced in hieroglyphs on empty cargo boxes found in the caves, Ward
Again, not an "official" source, but better than Biblical.
Here's a paper from "The International Journal of Nautical Archaeology" (2009). Much more thorough, though it's a fairly large PDF file:
. Also, though it references the shipworm damage,
it's not the source for the "six month" statement.
EDIT: What shipworms can do, and quickly:
These creatures are not actually worms, they are mollusks, with a tiny shell attached to one end of a long, worm-like body. The pointed shell is used
for burrowing into wood and can drill at about 8 to 12 rasping motions a minute, creating in soft wood a 4 inch tunnel in a
edit on 8/25/2012 by Harte because: (no reason given)