Archive - May 2011

360 degrees of Westminster Abbey

Delighted by the royal wedding and dazzled by the venue? If so, you may want to visit the BBC's 360 degree virtual tour of Westminster Abbey.

“You can either watch Brave Heart or you can live it”

“Some people ride motorcycles for excitement, some ski, some sky dive — this is what I do," Doug Turnage told reporter James Coreas of the North Texas Daily about fighter practice in the SCA Canton of Glaslyn in Denton, Texas.

Want the severed head of a medieval saint? Act now while supplies last!

The (alleged) severed head of St. Vitalis of Assisi, a 14th century Italian monk, is being put up for auction in Ireland. The relic has been owned by a prominent Irish family since the 18th century.

May 30th

The royal weddings of Westminster Abbey

Despite popular belief, Westminster Abbey has not been a popular site for British royal weddings. Only fifteen have taken place there since the 12th century.

"Death of a king" brought to life at Sutton Hoo

Visitors to Sutton Hoo, the Anglo-Saxon ship burial site in eastern England, can now experience the royal burial in a new way, complete with "smells and sounds to create an authentic atmosphere." (slideshow)

Time Team finds Anglo-Saxon hall

Channel 4's Time Team recently carried out an archaeological project at Bamburgh Castle in Northumberland, England where it discovered the floor of what they believe is a medieval hall.

May 29th

CalonSound Project christens new location with historic SCA songs

HL Mathurin Kerbusso has announced that the CalonSound Project, which chronicles the musical history of the Kingdom of Calontir, has moved to a new location. The move is celebrated by the release of a collection of songs by Mistress Safiya bin Suleiman.

All Saints Church might be site of Anglo-Saxon coronations

A team of researchers from London's Kingston University may have located the site of as many as seven 10th century Anglo-Saxon kings including Athelstan and Ethelred the Unready. All Saints Church is located near Westminister Abbey.

May 28th

Smithsonian exhibit sparks controversy

A display of 9th century Chinese pottery, discovered in 1998 in the wreck of an Arabic ship near Indonesia, has sparked controvery in the archaeological community. Shipwrecked: Tang Treasures and Monsoon Winds, was scheduled to be exhibited at Washington's Smithsonian Institution.

Pictures from the ARISE at the Farm demo in Delftwood

Dragos Palikanos reports that he has created an album of photos from a demo presented recently at ARISE at the Farm, in the fair Barony of Delftwood, Kingdom of AEthelmearc. The photos are available on Picasaweb.

The magnificent Aya Sofya

Undoubtedly, one of the greatest places of worship in history is the Aya Sofya, also known as Hagia Sophia or “Church of the Holy Wisdom.” Located in İstanbul, the church is visited by over two million tourists a year. Terry Richardson of Today's Zaman offers a history. (photo)

May 27th

Washington Haggadah centerpiece of Hebrew manuscripts at the Met

In celebration of Passover, Edward Rothstein of the New York Times discusses the reading of the Haggadah represented by the Washington Haggadah, a manuscript from 1478 on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art through June 26, 2011. (slide show)

Metal-working/jewelry books online

The Ganoksin Project has announced that it will release of more than 40 digitized versions of rare antique metalsmithing and jewelry books. The books are available in PDF format for a minimal fee which will be used to support the project.

Decadent Publishing discounting SCA-related novel in honor of Midrealm Crown Tournament

Decadent Publishing, which publishes the fictional SCA romance novel Tender is the Knight, is offering discounts on ebook and trade paperback editions of the novel from now through Memorial Day 2011 in honor of Midrealm Spring Crown Tournament, taking place at the Drawbridge Hotel in Erlanger, KY.

May 26th

14% of medieval parents chose "William" for their boys

Prince William of England has something in common with many medieval boys: his name. A new study shows that "William" was the most popular name for boys in the 13th century.

Buckton Castle built during time of "complete anarchy"

Buckton Castle in Cheshire, England was occupied for only 100 years, according to archaeologists from the  University of Salford, who have been working on the ruin. The castle was built to protect the area from Scottish invaders.

Pennsic 40 Grand Ball to have red and white theme

Countess Judith de Northumbria, Head of European Dance for Pennsic 40, reports on preparation for the Grand Ball to be held August 9, 2011 at Pennsic.

Raven's Fort members re-create Hughstown

Visitors to the Sam Houston Folk Festival in Huntsville, Texas may have been surprised to find knights in armor demonstrating combat, but the SCA folk were celebrating Houston's ancestry by creating “Hughstown,” the community founded in Scotland in 1153 by a Houston ancestor. (photo)

May 25th

Shava's views of Bardic Madness 2011

Northshield Kingdom Chronicler Elashava bas Riva shares photos, video and memories of Bardic Madness, which took place recently in that Kingdom.

May 24th

Roman plain yields ancient ship

“It’s a unique find. At that depth, we have never found a ship," said Anna Maria Moretti, archaeological superintendent for Rome and Ostia, about the discovery of a wooden vessel 4 meters beneath the ground near the modern city of Ostia.

Economics of the Middle Ages

Planet Money, which features podcasts about modern economics and news of the economy, recently offered an edition focused on medieval economics, particularly feudalism and guilds.

Scotland's Viking shipbuilders

Archaeologists are investigating a 12th century Norse shipbuilding site on the Isle of Skye, Scotland.  So far they have found boat timbers, a stone dock, and part of a man-made canal.

May 23rd

Maria Cristina de Cordoba to join ranks of Pelican

THLord Brandubh Donnghaile, Silver Buccle Herald for the Kingdom of AEthelmearc, reports that at Their recent Blackstone Raids event, Their Majesties Christopher and Morgen offered THLady Maria Cristina de Cordoba admittance into the order of the Pelican.

15th century book appears at Utah fundraiser

Salt Lake City book dealer Ken Sanders didn't expect much when working a fundraider in Sandy, Utah. His boredom was relieved, however by the offer for appraisal of a tattered copy of the 1493 Nuremberg Chronicle, "one of the earliest and most lavishly illustrated books of the 15th century."

Dom Duarte Goncalves de Montel newest member of the Dragon's Steel in Drachenwald

At His Majesty Vitus Polonius' court held at Tretower Court in the Welsh marches on Saturday, Dom Duarte Goncalves de Montel, currently the kingdom marshal of fence, was invited to become a member of the Order of the Dragon's steel.

Don Puck un Zapo's rapier technique videos online

On his A Midsummer Night's Blog, Don Puck un Zapo shares video of a class on Italian rapier techniques taught at the 2007 Known World Academy of the Rapier.

May 22nd

"Fairy tale find" in Austria

"Fairy tales still exist! Private individual finds sensational treasure in garden," read an annoucement from Austria's Federal Office for Memorials about the discovery of over 200 pieces of medieval jewelry. (photos)

Coptic nuns deface Egyptian temple

The Egyptian gods must have been angry when 6th century Coptic nuns used the walls of their temple for personal comments. The graffiti has been discovered at the 3200-year-old temple at Abydos.

Estrella War XXVIII moves to new site and date

Mineko of Twin Moons, Estrella War Promotions, reports that Estrella War XXVIII (2012) will be held at a new site and a new date.

May 21st

Come make a child happy at Pennsic 40!

Herrin Emeludt Haensler, Known World Children's Fete Coordinator, Pennsic 40, is seeking volunteers for the Fête to take place August 10, 2011 from 1:00-4:00 pm. Come make a child happy at Pennsic 40!