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$17bn of emeralds gold and silver found in shipwreck

The ship was identified by its 62 bronze cannons that feature a distinctive dolphin engravement

A shipwreck off the coast of Columbia has been discovered estimated to be carrying a cargo worth $17bn (£12.7bn), including gold, silver, and emeralds.

The shipwreck is that of the San José, a Spanish ship that was sunk by British forces during the Spanish Succession in 1708.

The discovery was made by the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) nearly 2,000 feet deep in the waters off Cartagena with the help of an autonomous underwater vehicle. The ship was identified by its 62 bronze cannons that feature a distinctive dolphin engraving.

In a statement the WHOI said: “The wreck was partially sediment-covered, but with the camera images from the lower altitude missions, we were able to see new details in the wreckage and the resolution was good enough to make out the decorative carving on the cannons.

“MAC’s lead marine archaeologist, Roger Dooley, interpreted the images and confirmed that the San José had finally been found.

“Once again, WHOI’s expertise in AUV technology and operations has resulted in an important discovery. We are pleased to have played a part in settling one of the great shipwreck mysteries for the benefit of the Colombian people and maritime history buffs worldwide.”

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