Stonework

Stone carving, masonry, and related endeavors

Computer technology to be used to read inscription on Roman altar

Two experts from the University of Mainz in Germany are using the latest computer technology to try to decypher the "invisible" inscription on a 3th century Roman altar. The stone was discovered in the River Tyne in 1672, but has never been legible. (video)

Pomegranate part of healthy Roman diet in England

Romans may have brought more than forts and paved roads to England during their occupation. They may have brought a healthy diet. (photo)

Cross slabs discovered after church fire

The recent devastating fire at St. Brandon's Church in Brancepeth, near Durham City, England was a tragedy, but one with "a silver lining." what the fire revealed were 20 medieval tombstones dating to the 12th and 13th centuries. (video)

Crusader-era marble hoard found in Akko

A hoard of over 350 pieces of rare, antique marble has been discovered beneath a cellar floor in the Israeli coastal city of Akko. The hoard dates to the 13th century, and is believed to have been collected from nearby destroyed buildings.

Antonine Wall: Scotland's hidden Roman treasure

When blogger Keir Roper-Caldbeck planned to bicycle the length of -- and report on -- Scotland's newest World Heritage site, the Antonine Wall, he thought it would be an easy task. That proved not to be the case. His blog of the journey is online.

4th century Roman temple found in Tuscany

A rectangular stone and marble temple, built using the opus testaceum technique, has been discovered near Marina di Alberese in central Italy. The existence of the 4th century temple may suggest a larger settlement in the area.

Controversial Wallace statue returned to creator

For more than ten years, a 13-foot, sandstone statue of William Wallace held a place of honor at the Wallace Monument in Stirling, Scotland, but last year it was returned to sculptor Tom Church "to make way for a new visitor centre." (photo)

Experts assess condition of Scotland's cliff-bound Old Wick

An archaeologist and a stonemason recently risked life and limb to investigate the ruins of the Old Man of Wick, a 12th century Scottish castle believed to have been built by Harald Maddadsson, the Earl of Orkney. The castle is perched precariously on the edge of a cliff overlooking the sea.

Great Wall longer than previously believed

A newly-discovered section of China's Great Wall shows that the structure was actually at least 11 kilometers longer than previously believed. The new section was found in the northeastern Jilin province.

Austrian museum photos online

Racaire reports that she has posted a number of albums of photos from her recent museum excursions on her Flickr website.

Orkney neolithic cathedral "built to impress"

A 65 ft. (21 meter) long structure dating back 5,000 years has been discovered at the Ness of Brodgar in Scotland's Orkney Islands. The walls of the structure, which would have been 16ft (5 meters) thick and surrounding a cross-shaped inner sanctum, still stand.

Castle builders "go medieval" in France

A group of medieval enthusiasts in Burgundy in France are building a castle using only medieval tools and techniques. An MP3 version of the radio story is available to download online.

Pre-Islamic stupa marks site of Buddhist temple

A coral stupa, a mound-like structure supposedly containing relics of the Buddha, has been discovered in Raa atoll Agolhitheemu, in the Maldives Islands off the coast of India. The stupa may prove that the site was once a Buddhist temple which was destroyed when Islam came to the island.

New excavations at Stonehenge may prove site a place of sacred healing

It has been over 40 years since any significant excavation have been done at Stonehenge, but during the spring of 2009, that changed when Timothy Darvill, professor of archaeology at Bournemouth University, and Geoffrey Wainwright, president of the Society of Antiquaries of London, headed a new dig in the monument's inner circle.

Ripon limekiln is an "important find"

British archaeologists are excited about the discovery of a 500-year-old limekiln behind Ripon House in Leeds, England. Constructed in the mid-15th century, the kiln is one of the largest medieval structures ever found in England. (photo)

New Stonehenge visitor center is a "go"

The long controversy is over. English Heritage's plan to build a new visitor center and divert a nearby road at Stonehenge has finally been approved. The program will cost an estimated UK£25m.

Pre-Mongol burial artifacts found in Detinets, Russia

Engineers working on a construction project near Detinets, Russia, the site of the citadel of the ancient Novgorod, have found fragments of medieval sarcophagi and stone crosses believed to date to the 12th-13th centuries.

400-year restoration of walls of Cadiz continues

For 400 years, city officials in Cadiz, Spain have been charged with the task of repairing and restoring the city's massive walls. The masonry walls, damaged in 1596 by the English, serve to keep out the ocean.

Medieval stone coffin moved to Bosworth Field museum

A medieval stone coffin, once used in a water garden and reputed to have belonged to King Richard III, has been installed as an exhibit in the visitor's center of Bosworth Field, the site where Richard was killed in 1485.

Ravehenge? Not!

Stonehenge experts are less than thrilled by recent depictions of the monument as a venue for prehistoric raves. “It has undoubtedly been put to the press in an eye-catching way with the use of the word rave and all that sort of thing,” laughs Dave Batchelor, archaeologist at Stonehenge, reflecting on the report by Huddersfield University’s Dr Rupert Till.

Alabaster bust of Cleopatra Discovered in Egyptian Temple

It's a bit early for SCA, but still interesting: A bust of Cleopatra made from alabaster and a mask that may have belonged to Marc Antony are among the many items discovered in the Taposiris Magna temple, north of Alexandria, Egypt.

Stonehenge should keep its secrets, opines essay

The recent discovery of graves at Stonehenge has led to a frenzy of speculation and proposed activity regarding the origins of the site. One commentator feels that the ancient structure should keep its secrets.

Remains of 3,000-Year-Old Fortress Discovered in Egypt

In Egypt, authorities have uncovered the remains of a giant fortress called Tjaru (or Tharu/Tharo) discovered in July 2007 near the Suez Canal.

New dig may explain Stonehenge

Just a few weeks after beginning, the excavators now working at Stonehenge have had what they describe as a "breakthrough." Clues towards the original placement of the bluestones, the site's oldest elements, may reveal why Stonehenge was built.

Right castle, wrong stone?

New research at Blarney Castle in Cork, Ireland points to the possibility that the stone kissed by millions may not be the "Blarney Stone" of legend.

"Give us back our wee men!"

Alex Salmond, Scotland's First Minister, has expressed a grievance over the continued absence of the Lewis Chessmen from Scotland. The chessmen, ivory pieces carved sometime during the 11th century, are housed in various museums in England.

Roman bridge reconstructed in Northumberland

A 2nd century Roman bridge, which originally crossed the Tyne River in Northumberland, has been reconstructed on the river's bank. The original was one of the largest bridges in Roman Britain.

Stonehenge tunnel plan scrapped

The fear that increased traffic might damage the historic site has led English Heritage to cancel a plan to build a tunnel under Stonehenge.

Roman tombstone found in Scotland

A red sandstone Roman Tombstone, the first Scottish example ever found, has been unearthed near Inveresk, Scotland proving "that Inveresk was a pivotal Roman site in northern Britain."

Mysterious runestone identified

Experts believe that they have identified a mysterious runestone discovered under the floor of Hausken Church in Rennesøy, Rogaland, Norway.