30 Forgotten Treasures Of The World

By Sarah Norman | May 10, 2024

The Lost Poems of Sappho

In the realm of lost treasures, there exists an allure that beckons explorers, historians, and dreamers alike. These coveted riches, steeped in mystery and steeped in the echoes of history, ignite our imaginations and fuel our curiosity. From ancient artifacts to masterful artworks, the stories behind these lost treasures evoke a sense of wonder, intrigue, and longing.

Join us on a captivating journey as we delve into the depths of time, uncovering tales of vanished wealth and the enigmatic fates that have befallen them. Brace yourself for a treasure hunt like no other, where the past comes alive, and the whispers of forgotten riches stir the soul. Welcome to the realm of lost treasures—a realm where legends are born and secrets await discovery.

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This mosaic fragment depicts the poetess Sappho. DEA / G. DAGLI ORTI/De Agostini via Getty Images

Renowned for her lyrical mastery, Sappho, the seventh-century B.C. Greek poet, was a titan of her era, drawing admiration and reverence from her contemporaries. However, unlike the legacy of Shakespeare to whom she's often compared, only fragments of her prolific output have survived to the present day. In a remarkable discovery in 2014, Dirk Obbink, a papyrologist from the University of Oxford, unveiled sections of two previously unseen poems by Sappho. One delves into familial bonds, focusing on her brothers, while the other explores the painful realm of unrequited love.

Despite their significance, these poetic fragments have a hazy provenance. An article penned by Obbink in 2021 that detailed their origin was retracted by the publishing house Brill, casting doubts on their exact origins. This shroud of uncertainty only deepens the enigma of Sappho's work, blending mystery with the poignant beauty of her verse.

Amaro Pargo's Elusive Legacy - The Undiscovered Treasure of Tenerife

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Portrait of Amaro Pargo located on the canvas of the "Christ of Humility and Patience" of the Shrine of Our Lady of El Rosario in Machado (Tenerife)

In the intriguing tapestry of history, few tales sparkle as tantalizingly as that of the Treasure of Amaro Pargo. Born into 17th century Tenerife, Pargo was a notorious privateer, renowned for his wealth and mystery. His legend lives on through the whispers of a hidden treasure, outlined in his cryptic will: a carved chest brimming with silver, gold jewelry, pearls, precious stones, Chinese porcelain, sumptuous fabrics, and paintings, all meticulously itemized in a parchment-wrapped book marked with the mysterious letter "D".

The whereabouts of this priceless inventory remain shrouded in mystery, fueling the imaginations of treasure hunters and historians alike. Pargo's home in Machado, in the municipality of El Rosario, has been pillaged by those seeking his hoard. Yet, the treasure remains elusive, as if laughing at the futile attempts of those seeking to unveil its secret hiding place.

Others have speculated that the treasure rests in the so-called Cave of San Mateo in Punta del Hidalgo, a cavern that once served as a hiding spot for Pargo's ill-gotten gains. Yet, despite these theories and extensive searches, the treasure has yet to be discovered. The Treasure of Amaro Pargo remains a tantalizing enigma, a centuries-old riddle yet unsolved. The story of this pirate's lost wealth is as intriguing as the man himself, a testament to the enduring allure of the unknown.