Stefan's Florilegium updates for March 2014

THLord Stefan li Rous reports that he has posted updates to Stefan's Florilegium for March 2014.

Position Opening: Laurel Principal Sovereign of Arms

The Board of Directors of the Society for Creative Anachronism are seeking applicants for the position of Laurel Principal Sovereign of Arms.

1,500-year-old Christian church unearthed near Tel Aviv

Construction work for a new neighborhood at Moshav Aluma, 30 miles south of Tel Aviv, has unearthed the foundations of a 6th century Byzantine church. The remains of the basilica and its artifacts discovered include "a cistern, a pottery workshop, cooking implements, oil lamps and central halls with a pair of side aisles divided by marble pillars."

Medieval superpowers of the Swahili Coast

Great civilizations of the Middle Ages were not located solely in Europe or Asia. Some of the world superpowers grew up along the coasts of Africa. In a feature article for i09, Annalee Newitz takes a look Songo Mnara, a city that thrived from the 10th to 15th centuries. (photos)

Anglo-Saxon tool papers online

On its website, Daegrad Tools of Sheffield, England offers an extensive list of papers on Anglo-Saxon tools. The papers are available for free download in PDF format.

Wyoming college hosts Biduum Latinum

Latin is alive and well at Students at the college are required Wyoming Catholic College where students and professors recently participated in Biduum Latinum, a Latin immersion weekend, where everyone spoke only Latin. KCWY News 13 has the story.

State Library of Victoria completes digitization project

The State Library of Victoria in Melbourne, Australia has just completed a project to digitize medieval and renaissance manuscripts from its own collection as well as some from the Ballarat Fine Art Gallery. The manuscripts are available to view on the library's website.

Stonehenge bluestones may have been local

Legend says that the bluestones of Stonehenge were transported from a quarry in Wales to the site on the Salisbury Plain, but a new study published in the Journal of Archaeological Science shows that the stones may actually have come from a site only three kilometres from the structure.

Walking Acre

"The Old City incorporates a multitude of forts, synagogues, mosques and churches, as well as a labyrinth of alleyways that date back centuries to the early Ottoman era and before. And there are plenty of the eight-centuries-old remains of an era when the Crusaders ruled this part of the world," writes Barry Davis in a recent touristy article about Isreal's city of Acre for the Jerusalem Post.

Manx returns to the Isle of Man

Manx was once the endangered list. Not the cat - the language. But now a new generation of young people, such as singer Ruth Keggin, is doing its best to breathe new life into the speech of the people of the Isle of Man.

New portraits of Shakespeare revealed

"I subjected the images to fundamental tests of identity and authenticity, and these revealed that we are dealing with true-to-life portraits of Shakespeare, one from his youth, the second from his old age," said Hildegard Hammerschmidt-Hummel about two recently-discovered portraits of William Shakespeare. (photos)

Britain's fifth-century cultural revolution

"Dark Ages" history traditionally considers the transition from Roman to Anglo-Saxon culture in England a time of bloody conquest, but in a new article published in the Journal of Archaeological Science suggest that the evolution may have been more cultural than brutal.

Earthquake may explain Shroud of Turin mystery

An article by Alberto Carpinteri and a group of researchers in Springer's journal Meccanica suggests that an earthquake might explain the mystery of the famous Shroud of Turin, whose cloth has been carbon dated to the 13th century.

Society Knight uses both Pen and Sword

An SCA member from An Tir, Sir Brand deux Leons has achieved his dream, as his Shakespearean-style play "To Each Their Own" is now in publication. Sir Brand seeks funding and participation from the SCA performing arts community to help drive a full stage production of the work.

Excavations show connections between Paganism and early Christianity in Ireland

Recent excavations at Caherconnell, County Clare, by the Caherconnell Archaeology Field School are shedding light on the transition from Paganism to Christianity in 5th century Ireland. Burials found in stone cists show that mourners used a combination of both religions to honor their dead.

Maiden crown artifacts found in Danish church

The discovery of the remains of a "maiden crown" in Roskilde Cathedral in Denmark have shed new light on women's fashion of the time. A maiden crown was worn by an unmarried woman in the Renaissance. The recently-discovered headpiece consisted of small flowers made of copper wire and silk thread. (photos)

Pennsic War Points and Schedule

Duke Edward Grey, the Pennsic Warlord, has posted the early agreements from War negotiations with the Middle Kingdom.

Dream of building a medieval town comes true

Since 1967, Bert Geuten has dreamed of re-creating an authentic medieval town using period tools and techniques. Now the first step of that dream has come to pass. In the small German town of Meßkirch in Baden-Württemberg, a team of craftsmen has started construction on a small church. (photos)

It's six books in one!

Medieval bookbinders may have been the precursors of eReaders when they developed the dos-à-dos (or "back-to-back") book with two or more separate texts and multi-hinged covers. One example is the beautiful devotional dos-à-dos book owned by the National Library of Sweden which includes six works. (photos)

More photos from Anteorra Winter Crown 2014

Caelin on Andrede reports that he has posted an album of photos from the recent Winter Crown Tournament in the Kingdom of Ansteorra. The photos are available to view on his Flickr website.

Medieval church wall and remains unearthed by electrical workers

The excavation of a ditch to bury an electrical cable has led to the discovery of a medieval church wall at St Ffinan's Church in Anglesey, England. The original church, believed to have been built in 620 CE, was mostly destroyed when the newer church was built in the 19th century.

EtymArab created to help study history of the Arabic language

Stephan Guth, Professor of Arabic at the University of Oslo, has created EtymArab, an electronic database designed to collect and make available research on the history of the Arabic Language. The first part, containing 1,000 words and concepts, is now online.

Cooking and defense in the Midrealm

Before the recent St. Valentine’s Day Massacre event in Kalamazoo, Michigan, Rebecca Thiele of NPR affiliate station WMUK spoke with several SCA members about life in the Society, including such diverse topics as combat, cooking and real life defense. The article is available in both print and audio.

"Astonishing" find in St. Bartholomew's Church

In 2006, St Bartholomew's Church in Much Marcle, England received UK£500,000 for restoration of the church. During the project, workers discovered a lead coffin in the tomb chest of Blanch Mortimer, daughter of 14th century traitor Sir Roger Mortimer, who overthrew King Edward II. English Heritage described the find as "astonishing." (photos, video)

Barony of Whiterun event showcases Nordic theme

Just in time for spring, an upcoming event in the Barony of Whiterun will feature Nordic-themed combat, arts and sciences, merchants, and especially archery.

Funds needed to restore haunted Wymering Manor

Even before it was damaged by death watch beetles, Wymering Manor in Portsmouth, England was pretty creepy. Tradition holds that the 400-year-old building, once featured on the Most Haunted Live television program, is the most haunted house in England. Today the manor's worst problem is its deterioration, which has led the owners to seek to raise the UK£2.5m needed for the project.

Kitty 1; scribe 0

Any cat owner who participates in needlework or scribal arts will sympathize with a 15th century Dutch monk who indicated a stain on his work and wrote "Cursed be the pesty cat that urinated over this book." (photo)

Last Day for Feast Survey

Monday, March 31, 2014 is the last day to take the Feast Survey online.

Wanted: Swordsmith apprentices for Edinburgh master-at-arms

Master-at-arms Paul Macdonald, of Macdonald Armouries in Edinburgh, Scotland, is looking for two apprentices. Qualifications include the ability to learn quickly and a passion for history.

"Impressive basilica" unearthed at Moshav Aluma

Archaeologists from the Israel Land Authority have discovered a 6th century Byzantine basilica, featuring "magnificent mosaic" floors, at Moshav Aluma, near Pelugot Junction, in Israel. (photo)