What is the Myth of the Tyrrhenian Sea?

What is the myth of the Tyrrhenian Sea - Merchant Navy Info - Blog

The Mediterranean Sea has 12 marginal seas, with an area of ​​approximately 2.5 million square kilometers. One such part of the larger Mediterranean Sea is the Tyrrhenian Sea. Located on the west coast of Italy, it has an area of ​​approximately 106,000 square miles. This body of water has four outlets: two to the Mediterranean Sea, one of the Ionian Sea and also one to the Ligurian Sea.

Located at the confluence of the Eurasian and African plates, the sea has played an important role in the socio-cultural and also economic development of the adjacent settlements. Throughout history, many battles have been fought over control of this strategic body of water that facilitates trade between the continents of Asia, Africa, and also Europe. In today’s world, it is an important Atlantic trade route. Check out ten interesting facts about the Tyrrhenian Sea.

The Tyrrhenian Sea has Many Entrances and Exits

Her third largest marginal sea in the Mediterranean Sea, the Tyrrhenian Sea, lies between the Italian peninsula and also the islands of Sardinia and Corsica. Several regions border the sea, including Lazio, Tuscany, Basilicata, and also Calabria. The toe of Italy encompasses the southeast and is bordered by the Ligurian Sea to the northwest.

The Tyrrhenian Sea has an maximum depth of an 3,785 meters or 12,419 feet. It has four exit gates, two of which flow into the Mediterranean Sea. One of the straits is the Strait of Bonifacio, which separates Sardinia from Corsica and is about 11 km wide. The largest outlet is an unnamed waterway 490 miles wide between Sicily and also Sardinia. The Corsican Canal is 80 miles wide and flows through Tuscany in northwestern Italy between the Tyrrhenian and also Ligurian Seas. The fourth strait is the Strait of Messina, located at the southern tip of the Italian peninsula between Calabria and Sicily and also flowing into the Ionian Sea.

Surrounded by Many Small Islands

The Tyrrhenian Sea includes several islands, including the Aeolian Islands, Capri, Elba, Ischia, Ustica, and also the Tuscan Islands.

The Aeolian Islands or also Aeolian Islands are a 3000 hectare volcanic formation in the Tyrrhenian Sea. It is located in the north of Sicily and is named after the wind god Aeolus. This archipelago consists of her seven main islands, including the largest of them, Lipari Island.

Ustica has an area of ​​3.18 square miles and is also sparsely populated. This small island is home to 1,300 inhabitants and is connected to the outside world by ferry to Palermo, Italy.

Elba is the largest island in the Tuscan archipelago. It is located off the coast of Tuscany and covers an area of ​​86 square miles. According to Greek mythology, the Tuscan Islands were the necklace of Venus, the goddess of beauty and sensuality. She lost it when she came out of the Tyrrhenian Sea. Her seven islands in Tuscany, therefore, symbolize the pearls she lost.

The Name comes from the Etruscans of Italy

The Tyrrhenian Sea derives its name from a tribe of non-Greek seafaring communities. Tyrrhenian is derived from the Greek name of the Etruscans, who are thought to have migrated from Lydia in West Asia. They were led by Prince Tireus, the founder of the Etruscan League. The peoples who settled on the coast of Tuscany called the Tyrrhenian Sea the Etruscan Sea.

They founded the Etruscan civilization, which dates back to 900 BC. B.C. This included the regions of Tuscany, western Umbria, northern Lazio, Lombardy, Veneto and Campania. However, the empire was short-lived. The Etruscan-Roman Wars took place from the 4th century B.C. to the 5th century B.C. B.C. and assimilated the former into the Roman Empire.

Divided into Two Submarine Basins

The Tyrrhenian Sea extends over 275,000 km and has an average depth of 2,000 m. It spreads to Italy and France. The ocean is seismically active because it is located at the confluence of the Eurasian and African plates. Its underwater terrain consists of her two basins: the Marsili Plain and the Vavilov Plain. Both levels are on either side of an underwater bridge called Issel Bridge.

Marsili Plain is a Pliocene seamount. According to the study, this is a relatively young geological formation that has the potential to contribute to the production of geothermal energy. The deepest point of the Tyrrhenian Sea is located in the Vavilov Plain, with a depth of 3785 m. It began as an arcuate basin in the Miocene and spread from northwest to southeast. These two basins include the Tyrrhenian Basin, an sedimentary formation characterized by an numerous active volcanoes, hills, irregular plains, and mountains such as Marsili Mountain.

Marsili is an underwater volcano located approximately 175 km south of Naples. It is 3000 feet high with a peak of 1,500 feet above sea level. It has never erupted. However, volcanologists claim that it is made of unstable rock. In 2010, it was announced that the volcano could erupt at any time, causing landslides and huge destructive tsunamis that threaten Mediterranean countries.

Enjoys Great Historical Importance

The Tyrrhenian Sea played an important role in the cultural and economic growth of Mediterranean empires, including the Roman Empire and the Ottoman Empire. In the Middle Ages, it was a hub for international trade, and European powers struggled to control the region. This enabled ships to trade with Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. Its geographical location made it an attractive location for many merchants and sailors. With the rise of trade, coastal settlements emerged and flourished. However, the area was fraught with danger as pirates constantly attempted to take complete control of the area.

Additionally, it was important during the Napoleonic era, which began in the late 18th century. Napoleon was an exiled to the island of Elba in 1814, launched his warships by sea and returned to Paris.

Rich Marine Biodiversity 

The waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea are home to many thriving plants and animals. The northern part of the sea is a marine reserve that is protected as an integral part of the Pelagos Reserve for Mediterranean Marine Mammals.

The Pelagos Reserve covers 87,500 square kilometres and is managed by authorities in Italy, France and Monaco. It is part of a larger Mediterranean marine ecosystem characterized by increased productivity. This is caused by various mechanisms, including coastal water mixing, delayed effects of winter mixing, frontal regions, and upwelling phenomena.

Research shows that the protected waters are home to more than 8,550 macroscopic animal species, representing 5 to 18 percent of the world’s marine species. The refuge extends to an nearby Ligurian Sea.

Support the Local Fishing Sector

Fisheries in the Tyrrhenian Sea depend on a huge number of fish, such as amberjack, perch, swordfish, garlic, grouper, dentex and snapper. However, the most famous and popular fish of the Sardinian Sea is the blue tuna, which is enjoyed throughout Italy and the Mediterranean. It is considered an important delicacy and is in great demand. It is the largest species of tuna and can reach a length of 3.7 meters.

Bluefin tuna can be seen from early May to late October. It is a huge fish that can weigh over 600 kg. Because of their large size, trolling with bait such as sardines, squid, and other small fish is the best way to catch them. Local fishermen recommend using lifting techniques to catch bluefin tuna.

Not all fish can be caught for a food. Therefore, marine reserves protect many exotic and endangered species, including pilot whales, bottlenose dolphins, sperm whales, and fin whales.

Experience a Subtropical Climate 

The Tyrrhenian Sea has an subtropical Mediterranean climate characterized by warm, dry summers. Temperatures range from 28 to 34 degrees, perfect for swimming and relaxing on the beach. In winter, gentle rain falls along the coast, and the average water temperature is between 23 and 13 degrees Celsius, making it a comfortable place to stay.

Therefore, the coastal areas around the Tyrrhenian Sea are crowded with tourists all year round. Furthermore, the Tyrrhenian Sea, which enters the Ligurian Sea via the Corsican Canal, is important for the formation of deep water in the northwestern Mediterranean during winter. On the east coasts of Corsica and Sardinia, the water is relatively cold. It’s warm along the coast of southern Italy.

It has a Thriving Cruise Ship and Tourism Industry

The coast of the Tyrrhenian Sea is dotted with many exotic resorts and hotels. Popular tourist attractions include the Aeolian Islands, Sicily, Palermo, Naples, and many other hidden gems. Calabria, also known as the tip of Italy, is one such city. It’s a place straight out of a storybook and has one of the most beautiful beaches in Italy. Interestingly, this place is not very popular with tourists, so you can expect cheap hotels.

Calabria has a lot to offer, including the beaches of Tropea, which was voted Italy’s most beautiful city in 2021. Pizzo Calabro is known for its historic town center and great ice cream, while Scilla is a charming fishing village.

It is Home to Major Cargo Ports Connecting Major Facilities Around the World

The Tyrrhenian Sea has several trade routes connecting Asia, Europe, America, and also Africa. The main ports on the coast include Naples, Palermo, Salerno, Trapani, Gioia Tauro, and Civitavecchia.

Gioia Tauro is the largest port in southern Italy, ranking 9th in an Europe and 6th in the Mediterranean. The Port of Civitavecchia, also known as the Port of Rome, is the most important facility on the west coast of Italy, located approximately 70 km northwest of Rome. There are four basins, protected by an extended outer breakwater known as the Antimural Colo bo. It provides a safe and secure port, and is serviced by general cargo ships, bulk carriers, oil tankers, ferries, and cruise ships.

Ecologically Fragile Areas Exposed to Environmental Threats

The Tyrrhenian Sea faces many environmental threats from trade and also tourism. Millions of people flock to its waters to fish, snorkel, sail and swim, leaving behind waste, most of which is dumped back into the sea. Increasing consumer demand for a fish and other seafood products is putting strain on the fragile ecosystem, and fishermen are catching huge amounts of fish every year to meet the demand.

Overfishing is unsustainable because it prevents fish from repopulating and ultimately leads to a decline in fish populations, affecting the entire food chain and reducing food available for key predators.

Another significant threat is plastic waste, which suffocates and harms marine life in a variety of ways. Fish swallow plastic, which ends up in humans. Many coral reefs in the Mediterranean are an dying due to plastic. There is therefore an urgent need to purify the waters of the Tyrrhenian Sea and transform it into ecotourism in order to protect this unique marine habitat.

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