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Rare Roman artifact found near Sicily

PALERMO, Italy, July 1 (UPI) -- Italian researchers say a rostrum, used by ancient Romans to ram enemy ships, was found off the coast of Sicily.

The rare bronze appendage may have been used in the final naval battle of the First Punic War, ANSA reported Tuesday. The rostrum was recovered about 230 feet below the surface by divers aided by remotely operated vehicles.

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Sicily's maritime affairs department department head, Sebastiano Tusa, said the Egadi rostrum confirms his theory that a battle took place northeast of the island of Levanzo between fleets from Rome and Carthage during the Battle of the Egadi in 241 B.C., the Italian news agency said.

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