Archive - 2012

October 10th

Volunteers encouraged to help excavate Roman bath house

Archaeologists from the Grampus Heritage team are encouraging volunteers to take part in excavations to uncover a Roman bath house at the Derventio site near Papcastle, England. “This is genuinely a once in a lifetime opportunity because I don’t believe you will see something like this again in my lifetime.," said Mark Graham, project manager.

Operation Nightingale unearths thoursands of artifacts on Salisbury plain

A team of volunteers from Operation Nightingale, a project to give soldiers recovering from injuries in Afghanistan a chance to gains new skills and interests, has unearthed an "astonishing" haul of artifacts on the Salisbury Plain.

Another Saturday night with the Scots and Roman legions

Stracathro Fort near Stirling, Scotland, the world’s most northerly Roman fort, may have been served by a wine bar or pub. Archaeologists woring on the Roman Gas Project discovered a settlement adjacent to the fort including "a large square room – the equivalent of a public bar – and fronted on to a paved area, akin to a modern beer garden."

October 9th

"People of Medieval Scotland" documents individuals from 1093 - 1314

Scotland's Education Secretary Mike Russell has launched a database charting life in medieval Scotland between 1093 and 1314 with software designed to be used in schools. The database was created at the University of Glasgow.

Richard III Society hopes to rewrite English history

Winston Churcill wrote, "History is written by the victors." So believe the members of the Richard III Society who feel that the Tudors - including Shakespeare, who worked for them - maligned the memory of King Richard for their own purposes.

Discovered village offers "a glimpse of rural 13th Century life"

Archaeologists have begun work on a site near Bromyard, England where they believe they will find the remains of a medieval village. "It may be part of a village called Studmarsh, on land known as the Grove."

October 8th

Driving Russia's Golden Ring

Despite the aggrevation of Russia's roads,  a road trip around the country's Golden Ring, "a circuit of about 10 ancient towns northeast of Moscow, each with its own set of glittering onion-domed churches and medieval fortresses," can be rewarding. Freelance writer iand a former Moscow correspondent for The New York Times, Celestine Bohlen, discusses her recent trip.

Development threatens War of the Roses battlefield

The Northampton Borough Council in Northampton, England is eager to turn over the 85-acre Delapre Park to sports club for their use, but there's a glitch. The park may be the site of a decisve battle between the Houses of York and Lancaster in 1460.

Fly like a falcon

Falconers in Abu Dhabi have created a mini helmet cam designed to allow viewers to experience the flight and hunt of a falcon. A short video reveals what it's like to "fly like a falcon."

October 7th

Archaeologists explore Vindolanda's water system

In 1930, Prof Eric Birley first recorded the pipework for the water supply at the Roman fort Vindolanda in Northumberland, England. Recently his grandson, Dr Andrew Birley, continued the legacy by identifying the spring-head and piping system for the fort.

Decorated medieval horse harness found in Ireland

On the Day of Archaeology blog, Damien Shields recounts the discovery of "one of the most beautiful archaeological objects" he had ever come across. Once thought to be a leather scabbard belt, the artifact proved to be a piece of decorated medieval horse harness. (photos)

Nigg cross-slab removed for restoration

The Nigg cross-slab, an 8th century, intricately-carved Pictish stone from Easter Ross in Scotland, has been taken to Edinburgh for restoration work at a cost of UK£180,000. Upon completion of the restoration, the stone will be returned to display at Nigg Old Church. (photos)

October 6th

Viking invasion of Australia?

Police grew suspicious recently when a Viking longship was seen moving around Elcho Island, an island off the coast of Arnhem Land, Northern Territory, Australia. The ship was piloted by a crew of six Rus. (photo)

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight digital manuscript

Murray McGillivray of the Cotton Nero A.x. Project reports that 180 high resolution, color images from the British Library's MS Cotton Nero A.x are now available to view on the website of the University of Calgary Libraries and Cultural Resources. The manuscript includes the complete story of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight.

"Significant" archaeological find revealed by Cowgate fire

In 2002, a devastating fire badly damaged the World Heritage site of Cowgate in Edinburgh's Old Town, but the clouds of smoke has a silver lining with the recent discovery of street frontages and tenements dating to the 16th century beneath the fire site.

October 5th

"Exotic items from abroad" found at Norse site in Scotland

Archaeologists have discovered a wealth of artifacts dating from the late Iron Age through to the end of the Viking era on the west side of the island of South Uist in Scotland. Included among the artifacts was a piece of bone marked with an ogham inscription.

French demand England pay restitution for Plantagenet killing

The French city of Angers has petitioned the British government for compensation payment in the death of Edward Plantagenet, son of Edward IV and nephew of Richard III of England, who died in 1499. The city was the medieval capital of Anjou, whence the Plantagenet family originated.

Irish crannog reveals early medieval treasures

A road crew excavating near Enniskillen, County Fermanagh in Northern Ireland has unearthed a crannog, complete with human remains and a wealth of artifacts dating to the 9th century. Items found included a carefully-crafted, fine-toothed nit comb. (photo)

Cormac Michelsone, called the Bald, Elevated to Pelican

THLord Cormac Michelsone, called the Bald was elevated this past weekend to the Order of the Pelican at the 4th Tournament of Champions by TRMs Uther and Kenna.

October 4th

Early Byzantine fortress and settlement found in Bulgaria

An archaeological team led by archaeologist Ivan Hristov has discovered a 5th century Byzantine town and fortress on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast. Experts believe the town was destroyed by an Avar invasion which sealed the area in the way Vesuvius sealed Herculaneum.

Crusader coins found in Apollonia castle

A joint team of archaeologists from Tel Aviv University and Israel’s Nature and Parks Authority have discovered "one of the largest gold coin hoards discovered in a medieval site in the land of Israel." The coins were determined to have circulated in the 13th century, the time Crusader occupation.

More Pennsic Photo Galleries from Ursus of Anglesey

Ursus of Anglesey has finished posting all his Pennsic pictures of this year, and the last albums are available online.

Bones4Cultures to analyze Viking life, health and culture

Experts from Interreg-Project "Bones4Culture" plan to take samples from 1000 medieval skeletons gathered from the German-Danish border land to learn more about the population, life, health and culture of the people of the region.

October 3rd

Mathieu Chartrain placed on vigil for Knighthood

Logan reports that Their Majesties Hirsch and Magdalena of the Kingdom of Calontir have placed Mathieu Chartrain on vigil to contemplate elevation to the Order of the Chivalry.

Boston loves its geeks

If you're a gamer, a LARPer, a fan, or a member of the Society for Creative Anachronism, you're welcome in Boston, according to Ethan Gilsdorf who wrote about the "dweebs, techies, trekkers, weirdos, and gamers" in an article on Boston.com. The article highlights the various activities and organizations in the city including the Barony of Carolingia.

Mesa parishioners undertake "scriptorium" project

A group of women from St. Mark's Episcopal Church in Mesa, Arizona, have created their own medieval scriptorium. Under the leadership of SCA member Lee Kitts, the women have completed the Book of Genesis, with plans to finish the other 65 books of the Old and New Testaments. Maria Polletta of Azcentral.com has the story. (slideshow)

October 2nd

Jousting and fencing at Idaho Ren Faire

SCA members Brian and Elise Dix and Joe and Nikky Scofield plan to take part in the Idaho Renaissance Faire in October 2012. Recently they spoke to Diana Baird of the Emmet, Idaho Messenger-Index.

Rare evidence of medieval trepanation found in Spain

Trepanation, the practice of drilling holes into the skulls of living beings for medical or religious purposes, was rarely performed in the Middle Ages, but the discovery of two skulls in Spain, dating to the 13th or 14th centuries, has made experts scramble for an answer.

Dianna Doria offered Laurel in the Outlands

Baroness Jeanne-Marie reports that Their Majesties Ard Ri  Flanagan and Ban Rion Drahomira, of the Kingdom of the Outlands, have offered The Honorable Lady Dianna Doria admittance into the Order of the Laurel.

Website features playing cards through history

Want to know what a deck of cards looked like at Henry VIII's table? How about Salladin? The World of Playing Cards is the place to find out!