A 1,700-year-old sarcophagus found in an abandoned city near Rome could contain the body of a gladiator or a Christian dignitary, say archaeologists who are preparing to examine the coffin in the lab.
Found in a cement-capped pit in the ancient metropolis of Gabii, the coffin is unusual because it’s made of lead—only a few hundred such Roman burials are known.
Even odder, the 800 pounds (362 kilograms) of lead fold over the corpse like a burrito, said Roman archaeologist Jeffrey Becker. Most lead sarcophagi look like “old-fashioned cracker boxes,” molded into a rectangular shape with a lid, he said.
Interesting. It’s not sealed though, so preservation is likely to be good but not exceptional I would think. There’s an opening through which to send in an endoscope and have a look around to see if it’s worth opening, but I tend to err on the side of letting it be for the time being.