1201 CE to 1300 CE

Two different Magna Cartas in Washington

In 2014, the city of Washington DC was privileged to host two copies of the Magna Carta, one permanently housed in the National Archives, and another on loan from Lincoln Cathedral in England, displayed at the Library of Congress. Geoff Edgers of the Washington Post looks at the differences between the two documents.

The lions of London

The lion is the symbol of the King of England, and for the first time since the early 13th century, the city will be without the king of the beasts. The lack of lions will occur due to a new exhibit being built at the London Zoo, causing its three residents to be relocated until 2016. The BBC Magazine Monitor has a feature about the history of the London lions.

St. Francis manuscripts displayed in the US

In November 2014, 19 manuscripts written by St. Francis of Assisi travelled outside Italy for the first time for exhibition at the United Nations and Brooklyn Borough Hall in New York. The manuscripts include several poems written by St. Francis, including the saint's Canticle of the Sun and his Canticle of Canticles.

Tower timbers found on Firth of Clyde

The west Scotland Firth of Clyde may have housed a 13th century harbor and large timber tower, according to archaeologists from Wessex Archaeology Coastal & Marine and members of the local community who have been studying the site since the destructive winter storms of early 2014. (photos, map)

Medieval city of Ukek found in Russia

Archaeologists have discovered the remains of a 750-year-old city along the volga River in Russia. Ukek, a major city of Batu Khan's Golden Horde, is believed to have been founded by the descendents of Genghis Khan.

Doctoral thesis changes history of Swedish glass

Archaeologist Anna Ihr's doctoral dissertation, Becoming Vitrified, shows that the glass industry in Sweden is much older than previously believed, as early as the 13th century. The thesis describes how different vitrified, or glassy, materials can be interpreted and analysed.

Lavenham seeks World Heritage status

According to Wikipedia, Lavenham, England "is a village and civil parish in Suffolk, England noted for its 15th-century church, half-timbered medieval cottages and circular walk." Now the town's business forum and parish council plan to apply to UNESCO for a World Heritage grant to "help balance tourism, the local economy and traffic." (photos)

Mongol warship found near Japanese island

Twice in seven years, 1274 and 1281, the Mongol Emperor Kublai Khan tried to invade Japan. On one of those missions a ship sank in a typhoon off the island of Takashima. Now arhaeologists hope to learn the secrets of the Mongol warship from the recently-discovered wreck.

Marco Polo in America

Most historian state that Christopher Columbus came to America in 1492, but new evidence, in the form of period parchments, may show that Marco Polo landed on the west coast nearly two centuries earlier.

“Lord, help Veronica”

Since 2000, Nikolai Ovcharov has headed excavations at Perperikon in southern Bulgaria, revealing some amazing finds. The latest includes a 12th to 13th century container inscribed with the words in Greek, “Lord, help Veronica.” (photo)

Great hall of Llys Rhosyr to be rebuilt in museum

Llywelyn Fawr of Gwynedd, 13th century Welsh prince,  built Llys Rhosyr as one of his royal courts. Now the site, long ago buried by sand dunes, and rediscovered in 1992, will live again as an exhibit in St Fagans National History Museum near Cardiff. (drawing)

3D scanning used to study medieval teeth

Researchers from around the world may benefit from a study of the molars of 22 individuals unearthed during excavation of Periplatz cemetery in Berlin. The remains, dating from between 1200 to c.1600 CE, were analyzed using "3D printing technology to complement strontium isotope analysis in order to better understand the ancient residents of Berlin."

Chinese Yuan Dynasty Treasures at Freer Gallery

The Freer Gallery in Washington DC will showcase treasures from the Song and Yuan Dynasties this winter including ceramics and landscape paintings from the 13th and 14th centuries.

Second 13th century malting oven found in England

In July, archaeologists working on excavations in St John's Street in Northampton, England discovered a 13th century malting oven, used to roast grain for brewing. Now a second, even larger, oven has been found at the same site. (photo)

Volunteers help reconstruct history of 13th century Norfolk church

St. Margaret's Church in Hopton, Norfolk, England burned in 1865 and was abandoned by parishoners, but with the help of volunteers and a Heritage Lottery Fund grant, the church may be restored to the community "as a medieval monument and open green space for local people."

The Crusader Bible on display at the Morgan Library

The Maciejowski Bible, better known as the Crusader Bible, is the star of a new exhibit at the Morgan Library and Museum in New York City. The 13th century manuscript is considered one of the greatest illuminated manuscripts in the world. It will be on display through January 4, 2015.

Medieval furniture lecture at Castlerock Museum

Anplica Fiore reports that the Castlerock Museum in Alma, Wisconsin will host a lecture entitled Medieval Furniture of the Maciejowski Bible on November 30, 2014 at 2pm.

Ethiopia encourages tourists to visit rock-hewn, 13th century churches

Ethiopia, long known as a country of poverty and famine, hopes to change its image through tourism, especially through visits to medieval sites such as Lalibela, where eleven 13th century churches were "chiselled out of the town's red volcanic rock hills." David Smith of The Guardian has a feature story. (photos)

Mysterious Gedi: Kenya's Machu Picchu

In 1927, archaeologists discovered the remains of the fabled city of Gedi deep in the jungles of Kenya, but only recently have they begun to appreciate the advanced nature of the city. (photo)

Barley malting oven found in Northampton, England

A nearly perfectly-preserved barley malting oven from the 13th century has been discovered by archaeologists working on an excavation in Bridge Street, Northampton, England. The construction was found complete with char marks on the hearth. (photo)

Northampton's oldest brewery found during construction work

Archaeologists working at the site of the new Northamptonshire County Council headquarters have uncovered what is believed to be the town of Northampton's first brewery. Dating to the 13th century, the large stone pit shows scorch marks where barley had been roasted. (video)

Own a piece of Magna Carta history

For a mere UK£4 million, buyers can own a piece of English history in the form of a small island in the Thames River where, it is believed, the rebellious barons who created the Magna Carta camped before the signing. (photos)

Aerial photography pinpoints lost Polish village

From the ground, a grassy area near the village of Niedźwiedziny in Wielkopolska, Poland, appears to be an ordinary field, but archaeologists believe differently. Recent aerial photographs show crops growing with the outlines of an oval-shaped medieval village.

Volunteers excavate Sherwood Forest

According to legend, Robin Hood married Maid Marian in Edwinstowe, a village near the Major Oak, the legendary shelter for the outlaw and his band of Merry Men. Now volunteers are helping to excavate the area looking for Sherwood Forest's medieval past.

Roman intaglio re-used by medieval jeweler

Metal detectorist Philip Jackson made a rare and interesting find recently when his equipment pinpointed a silver pendant in a South Derbyshire field constructed around a Roman intaglio (a carved stone). (photo)

Volunteers help find site of 13th century hospital

For three years, archaeologists have been looking for signs of a medieval hospital in Northumberland Park in Tyneside, England. 80 medieval burials have been found, and, in the last few days of the dig, a floor of glazed tiles, probably from the hospital's chapel. (photos)

Medieval linen found in Northampton tanning tanks

Several scraps of linen dating to the Middle Ages have been found at the base of a timber and stone-lined tanks, believed to have been used for tanning, in the St John's Street excavation in Northampton, England. (photos)

English extend funds for 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta

2015 will be a big year for Magna Carta enthusiasts, marking the 800th anniversary of the document. Recently ten organizations were awarded funds to help with commemorations of the event.

US$8M needed to restore Timbuktu

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) reports that US eight million dollars will be needed to reconstruct the damaged monuments and mausoleums of Timbuktu, Mali, and to return of over 300,000 collections of ancient manuscripts.

Securing the precious Magna Carta

Chris Woods, director of the  British National Conservation Service, has a daunting task: to assure the safety of the precious Lincoln Magna Carta during its tour through the United States in 2014.