Archaeologists excavating one of the richest shipwrecks of antiquity say they have found a 2,000-year-old depth measuring device, and bones that could help build an ancient mariner's genetic profile.

The 1st century B.C. wreck of a large freighter found off the southern Greek island of Antikythera more than a century ago has yielded marble statues, tableware and thousands of other artefacts.

Human bones were found there before, but before the era of DNA testing. The discovery of remains that old on the seabed is unusual.

The Massachusetts-based Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, which is conducting the excavation with the Greek culture ministry, said Monday that if enough viable DNA is preserved, the bones could shed light on the shipwreck victim's ethnicity.

The new discoveries were made earlier this month.