801 CE to 900 CE

Anglo-Saxon ring centerpiece of BBC archaeology program

An exceptional gold ring, sporting "four beasts' heads with inlaid blue and yellow glass eyes" will be featured on a new BBC program Digging for Britain, focussing on Bristol, England and Berkeley Castle. (photo)

Ancient Bulgarian burial mound found

Archaeologists have unearthed a burial mound they suspect belongs to pre-Christian Bulgars of the Pliska period. Little is known about the people of this time and place.

Rotunda from the Great Moravian Empire found in Czech Republic

Pohansko, in the South Moravian region of the Czech Republic, translates as "Pagan Place," but archaeologists have discovered the remains of a rotunda as part of a 9th century church.

Bard to perform Beowulf in Berkeley

October 26-30, 2010 in Berkeley, CA, medievalist and early music specialist Benjamin Bagby will perform the epic saga of Beowulf. His performance will be accompanied by Anglo-Saxon harp.

9th century Byzantine monastic complex found in Turkey

At first, experts thought they had discovered a 9th century Islamic building, but evidence concluded that Küçükyalı Arkeopark, a large archaeological area on the Asian side of Istanbul, is the only surviving Byzantine monastic complex from 9th-century Constantinople.

Experts debate meaning of symbols on Pictish stones

The debate continues among archeologists and linguists over the symbols on over 200 carved stones dating to the time of the Picts in Scotland. Archeologists feel that the carvings are "symbolic markings that communicated information."

Viking "thunderstones" identified in graves

Archaeologists have long wondered about the inclusion of "thunderstones"—fist-size stone tools resembling the Norse god Thor's hammerhead -- in Viking graves. New research may show that the stones were considered good-luck talismans. (photo)

Iceland's early settlers cause scholarly debate

Icelandic scholars are still debating who the country's first settlers actually were. Tradition states that Ingólfur and Hjörleifur were the first settlers, but new evidence may show that 870, the date of their arrival, may not be correct.

Drinking pot helps date 9th century town

Experts from Leicester University in England recently used the shards of a pottery drinking pot to date the building of fortifications for the town of Wallingford to the late 9th century. They believe the walls were built to protect against Viking raids.

"Light of the Sufis" at the Houston Museum of Fine Arts

Now through August 8, 2010, the Houston Museum of Fine Arts will host Light of the Sufis: The Mystical Arts of Islam, an exhibit that "focuses on some of the most important Sufi ideas and practices that found expression through the arts of the Islamic world."

Viking clothing bright and provocative says Swedish expert

Historical films and fiction have always depicted the Norse as dour fellows, dressed in earthtones and furs, but new evidence seems to show otherwise.

Sackler Gallery to present "Gods of Angkor"

The Sackler Gallery in Washington D.C. will host Gods of Angkor: Bronzes from the National Museum of Cambodia, "the first international exhibition to focus specifically on the skills and achievements of Khmer bronze casters," May 15, 2010 through January 23, 2011.

International Vinland Seminar to take place in Chicago

Officials have announced that the International Vinland-seminar,  "a three day event dedicated to the Norse discovery of America and Scandinavian Viking Culture," will take place in Chicago, IL October 15-17, 2010 at North Park University.

Mayan History Preserved in Floors

Maya commoners of their Classic Period --  "illiterate farmers, builders and servants" -- preserved their history by burying their old possesions in the floors of newly built homes. 

Rare 9th century Viking necklace found in Ireland

Archaeologists working in Glencurran Cave in Ireland have discovered a "stunning piece of jewellery," a Viking necklace of glass and gold foil beads. (photo)

Jewel of Muscat sails

1200 years ago, Arab ships sailed the Indian Ocean. Now, centuries later, the Jewel of Muscat, a replica of a 9th century ship, built in Oman as a gift to Singapore, sails again. Her 10-day journey is chonicled in photos by the BBC.

International Vinland-seminar

We are pleased to announce the International Vinland-seminar in Chicago, a three day event dedicated to the Norse discovery of America and Scandinavian Viking Culture, 15th – 17th October 2010.

Saxon artifact puzzles experts

Microscopes, X-rays and CAT scans have, so far, been used to identify a recent discovery of a Saxon object from an archaeological dig at The Meads in Kent, with no results. The circular silver, bronze and wooden disk is believed to be a mount, but no one is sure. (photos)

Climate cause of tough times for Norse settlers

New geochemical research by the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, Canada shows that Norse settlers in 9th century Greenland and Iceland faced enormous challenges. The study followed temperature changes through analysis of mollusk shells.

Debate over Initial Settlement of Iceland

Who were the first European settlers to come to Iceland? Were they truly Ingólfur Arnarson his wife Hallgerdur Fródadóttir, as told in Íslendingabók (Book of Icelanders)?

Plea made to acquire Staffordshire Hoard

In January 2010, a public appeal was made to raise money to build buy the Staffordshire Hoard, considered the "most important find ever" from the Anglo-Saxon era. The appeal was made to raise UK£3.3m to pay the finder of the Hoard and the owner of the land.

The fleur-de-lis: not just for the Saints

Many Americans recognize the fleur-de-lis only as the team logo of the Super Bowl-winning New Orleans Saints, but the symbol has a long, rich history.

Eliseg’s Pillar still a mystery

Little seems to be known about the origins of Eliseg’s Pillar, a Dark Ages monument in Wales' Pant y Groes, the Valley of the Cross. The original pillar was kncoked down during the English Civil War, and re-erected in the 18th century.

Staffordshire horse head on display

A two-inch tall, gold filigree horse head is one of the latest pieces from the Staffordshire Hoard to be displayed at the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery in Stoke-on-Trent, England. (photo)

300 early medieval graves found near Paris

Archaeologists working in Noisy-le-Grand, a suburb of Paris, have discovered two burial grounds dating to Merovingian and Carolingian times. The site is believed to contain more than 300 graves.

Staffordshire Hoard booklet on sale at British Museum

The British Museum has published a small book on the Staffordshire Hoard. The 48-page book can be purchased from the British Museum Shop online for UK£4.99, with £1 going to Staffordshire museums to purchase and display items from the Hoard.

Pictish throne marks beginning of early Scottish research project

A throne, commissioned by distillers Glenmorangie and National Museums Scotland, and patterned after stone designs by the ancient picts, has become the symbol of a new research project to study Scotland's early history (photo)

New book looks at role of women in Carolingian society

History professor Valerie Garver knows that women faced challenges in the medieval world, but believes that they still played an important role in the world of Charlemagne. Garver's book, Women and Aristocratic Culture in the Carolingian World has been published by Cornell University Press.

Visitors invited to view processing of Anglo-Saxon grave finds

Visitors to the town of Sittingbourne, England have a rare opportunity to watch the processing of artifacts from an Anglo-Saxon burial site. (photos and video)

Abbasid Period village found in Qatar

A joint team of French and Qatari archaeologists is excited about the discovery of a 9th century town, "a remarkable village of 220 houses, two forts and two mosques," buried for centuries beneath the sands of northwest Qatar.