701 CE to 800 CE

How the English changed the Danes

There are documents a plenty on how the Vikings influenced the culture of England, but a new study looks at ways that Danish Norse were influenced by the English they conquered. According to Ph.D candidate Marie Bønløkke Spejlborg, it was the English who inspired Danes to organise themselves into cities."

Port near Birka larger than previously believed

Marine archaeologists working at a port near the ancient village of Birka, Sweden believe the port was larger than previously believed and may show evidence of the exensive trade system of the Norse.

Saxon "paupers' cemetery" found under British construction site

The remains of a 9th-10th century church and its graveyard have been discovered during construction along the Ipswich, England waterfront. 300 graves, consisting largely of very old and very young bodies, were found, exceeding the expectations of researchers who knew that a church might exist on the site.

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)

Anglo-Saxon artifacts found at Polesworth Abbey

Excavations at Polesworth Abbey near Tamwoth, England, have yielded a variety of exciting artifacts including a brooch and decorates ceramic tiles. The site was originally a Benedictine nunnery founded in the 9th century.

Byzantine shipswreck found off the coast of ancient Phanagoria

Russian Archaeologists are excited by the discovery of an 8th century Byzantine shipwreck discovered under Taman Bay in the Bacl Sea. The merchant ship, called the "most valuable artifact in 12 years" still held only one amphora in what must have once been a large cargo.

Istanbul patriarchate plans to restore world's third oldest church

The Başmelekler Church, built in 789 by Byzantine Emperor Constantine Porphyrogennetos, is believed to be the world's third oldest church. Now it has been purchased by the Istanbul patriarchate which hopes to "restore this historical structure to its past glory."

Durham University prepares for arrival of the Lindisfarne Gospels

Officials at Durham Cathedral and University are readying themselves for the arrival of the 1,300-year-old Lindisfarne Gospels at the university in 2013, with such activities as a concert by the newly formed Lindisfarne Gospels Community Choir.

Fabled seat of Danish kings discovered in Germany

A team of Danish archaeologists believe they have discovered the fabled Viking town Sliasthorp by the Schlei bay in northern Germany, the "center of power for the first Scandinavian kings." The discovery may give a new prospective on Scandinavian military organization. (photo)

"Charlie" and "Al" change western grammar

In the 8th century, the literate began to use uppercase letters in their writing. According to business writing expert Stephen Wilburs, the change can be traced to Charlemagne (Charlie) and Flaccus Albinus Alcuinus (Al) as a means to make reading easier.

Met exhibit marks Constantinople's first "Arab Spring"

The recent Arab Spring, in North Africa and the Middle East, was not the first, according to a Deborah Amos report on NPR. The first was the conflict of culture between the Byzantine Empire and the new Islamic religion in the seventh century to the ninth centuries.

Anglo-Saxon ironwork reference paper online

In 1995, Patrick Ottaway wrote a paper based on his PhD thesis for York University entitled Anglo Saxon Ironwork. The paper is available in PDF format on the PJO Archaeology website.

Coronation Ordo of Kenric & Avelina, King & Queen of the East

The Coronation of TRM Kenric and Avelina, King and Queen of the East, was held on April 14, AS 46 (2012). The ceremony was an experiment in presenting as authentic a coronation as could be managed within the restraints of SCA rules and customs. The service used at the coronation of King Aethelread II in 978 was followed as closely as possible.

Phantom Time Hypothesis wipes out 300 years of the Dark Ages

The debate among historians of the Middle Ages over the years 600–900 CE has come to a boil with the Phantom Time Hypothesis (PTH), a chronological theory that contends that the 300-year period was created by Holy Roman Emperor Otto III.

"Exciting" Anglo Saxon discovery in Yorkshire Dales National Park

A team of amateur archaeologists from the Ingleborough Archaeology Group has discovered evidence of an Anglo Saxon building in the Yorkshire Dales National Park in northern England. The "exciting" discovery is "the first building in the national park that is firmly dated to the 7th Century and is one of only a handful in the north."

Japanese train yard reveals luxury lodgings

A site excavated at a train yard in Japan is thought to have been a facility that provided food and lodgings to Korean and Chinese enyoys. The facility is mentioned in ancient manuscripts and dates to the 8th or 9th century CE.

Was there an Anglo-Saxon England?

In an article for the History Today, Patrick Wormald, Lecturer in History at Christ Church, Oxford, looks at the myth of a unified Anglo-Saxon England.

Disturbed remains may not be fault of grave robbers

Archaeologists who have found graves from the early Middle Ages with remains disturbed have long believed that grave robbers were responsible, but new research may show that the destruction was done for other reasons than material gain.

Pictish power centered in Rhynie

Excavations near the site of Scotland's Rhynie Man, a six-foot boulder carved with the image of a Pict, have revealed a fortified early medieval settlement, possibly the seat of the mysterious Kings of Pictland.

Anglo-Saxon burials reveal life of hardship

A 7th-8th century CE cemetery has been discovered during a patio renovation at a home in Warwickhire, England. The burials, probably part of a much larger cemetery, have revealed new insight about life for people in the Middle Saxon period.

Archaeologists plan conservation of 8th century Buddhist university

For years, the ruins of Vikramshila university, an ancient seat of Buddhist learning in Bhagalpur, India, have been neglected. Now a team of archaeologists have decided to begin work on the "university" which once housed over 10,000 students.

Nigg Old Trust to receive grant for conservation of Pictish stone

"It seems always to have stood in the churchyard at Nigg," said Liz Budge, of Nigg Old Trust about an intricately carved Pictish stone in Easter Ross, Scotland. The Nigg Old Trust has recently received a funding package of UK£178,000 for conservation and display. (photo)

Scottish archaeologists investigate vitrified fort

1,300 years ago, a tribe of warriors tried in vain to defend a fort below Abbey Craig in Stirling, Scotland. Their failure led to the total destruction, or vitrification, of the fort by fire. Recently archaeologists spent four days investigating the site.

Churches in Sudan shed light on saints and pilgrims

A series of well-preserved medieval churches in central Sudan are giving researchers new information into the world of medieval pilgrimages and veneration. Inscriptions at one site show that pilgrims came from as far away as Catalonia.

Staffordshire Hoard exibit to come to Washington D.C.

You've read about it. You've seen the photos. Now you have the chance to see the wonders in person when one hundred artifacts from the Staffordshire Hoard go on display at National Geographic Museum in Washington D.C.

Forum focus of new dig at Caistor St Edmund

Dr. Will Bowden, associate professor of Roman archaeology at the University of Nottingham, has begun a new dig at he site of Venta Icenorum at Caistor St Edmund, this time in search of a Roman forum and an Anglo-Saxon town.

Edward Jenner's garden holds historic secrets

Archaeologists from the University of Bristol are digging up Edward Jenner's garden, not seeking evidence of the 18th century British scientist, but secrets much older, including a skeleton dating to Roman times.

Staffordshire Hoard environmental archaeology paper available online

The Portable Antiquities Scheme blog has posted a new paper on "the potential of environmental archaeology" in regard to the Staffordshire Hoard discovered in 2009 near Staffordshire England.

Sutton Hoo ship burial to be reconstructed

To enhance the visitor experience, the burial chamber at Sutton Hoo is being reconstructed. Richard Daniel, of the BBC, reports. (video)

Forget Denmark! Hamlet's name was Irish!

Researchers have long traced the roots of Shakespeare's Hamlet, Prince of Denmark to Amlethus in the History of the Danes, written around 1200, but a new study traces the name back even further, to 8th or 9th century Ireland.