Asian

Cultures of Asia and the classical Orient

Travel the Silk Road at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History

The Cleveland Museum of Natural History will host Traveling the Silk Road, an exhibit which promises "the spectacular sights, sounds and stories of the greatest trade route of ancient times." The spectacular exhibit will be at the museum until October 5, 2014.

Life of King Sawlu told on tablet

Archaeologists working at a site near Mandalay, Burma are excited by the discovery of a 900-year-old stone tablet describing the life of little known Burmese king Sawlu. The tablet acknowleges that the king "ruled the nation by the teachings of Lord Buddha" and mentions a monastery built by donations from Sawlu's wife. (photo)

Letters to Eung-tae tell story of love and grief

500 hundred years ago, a grieving wife wrote 13 love letters of Shakespearean pathos to her dead husband. The letters were buried along with the mummified remains in Andong City in South Korea, and tell "him she wants to see him and listen to him in her dreams."

Search for sultan's heart continues

Archaeologists working at a site near Szigetvar, Hungary have discovered an Ottoman-era town near the site of the 16th century siege between Suleiman the Magnificent and Croatian-Hungarian nobleman Miklos Zrinyi. Experts hope to find the location where the sultan's heart is buried.

13th century volcano changed climate

Medieval texts record an abrupt cooling in the weather in the middle of the 13th century, including a terrible summer in 1258. Now a group of scientists believe they have found the source of the cooling: the eruption of the Samalas Volcano on Lombok Island, Indonesia.

Antiquity Gamecrafters on Artfire

Antiquity Gamecrafters offers a selection of historic board games.  Each game comes complete with board, pieces, drawstring bag for the piece, and rule booklet.

Union Catalogue of Oriental Manuscripts in German Collections set to be completed in 2022

In 1957, when it was proposed, cataloging the thousands of “oriental” manuscripts scattered throughout Germany seemed an almost impossible feat, but the mammoth project may come to a successful end in 2022 if all goes well.

Wrecked merchant ship salvaged off coast of Vietnam

After five long months of battling sand and seawater off the coast of the Binh Son district in Vietnam, experts have recovered a wealth of 14th century artifacts from a shipwreck, possibly associated with the silk and pottery road.

Authentic yurt for sale on eBay

Looking for alternative housing? A truly authentic yurt - or yurta - is available to purchase on eBay for a mere US$39,900.00. The yurt is constructed of felt and birch and weighs about 350 kg (770 lbs), but good news: shipping is free.

Tamerlane the Disabled

Tartar warlord Tamerlane may have been the greatest conqueror of all, outshining Genghis Khan and Alexander the Great, but few recognize the fact that the great warrior was severely disabled in his youth. The BBC features Tamerlane in an article for Disability History Month.

Mosaic floors highlight Byzantine excavations in Turkey

“During these excavations, we found the ruins of a church and mosaics that are believed to date from the late Roman and Byzantine periods,” said Provincial Culture and Tourism Director Abdullah Kılıç about recent excavations in Isparta, Turkey. (photo)

Bali's "biggest ancient Hindu temple" found

Construction workers in Denpasar, Bali have discovered the remains of a stone temple at a Hindu study center believed to be the largest Hindu temple ever found on the island. Archaeologists have identified the foundations of the 20-metre-long east wing of the structure.

Walters Museum places digital books online

The Walters Museum of Baltimore has placed a large part of its rare book collection online, with options to view the pages online or download high resolution images.

11th century Tibetan statue carved from a meteorite

In a story fit for an Indiana Jones movie, a statue carved by the Bon people of Tibet in the 11th century and excavated by Nazis in the 1930s has been found to be carved from a meteorite that fell to earth between 10,000 and 20,000 years ago.

Handbag museum to open in Korea

The next time you are in Seoul, Korea, make sure to visit the Simone Handbag Museum, whick opens in the Gangnam District in August. The museum will feature mostly European purses from the 16th century through modern times.

16th century Korean boy helps scientists decipher hepatitis B genetic code

Israeli and Korean scientists have teamed up to study the remains of a Korean child, dating to the 16th century Joseon Dynasty, which show evidence of the hepatitis B virus. The results led to the map of the entire ancient hepatitis B viral genome.

Class Central offers free university courses online

Eternal students who find themselves unable to attend traditional university classes may wish to consider the offerings of Class Central, a free, online project offered by Stanford's Coursera, MIT and Harvard led edX (MITx + Harvardx), and Udacity.

Portuguese medallion found in baby shark

Suseela Menon from Klebang, Malaysia was preparing lunch for her husband when she discovered a surprise in the stomach of a baby shark, the main course: a religious medallion believed to have been worn by Portuguese soldiers. (photo)

Istanbul's Hagia Sophia might return to place of worship

The 6th century Byzantine marvel, the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, may be returning to its orgins as a place of worship by once again becoming a mosque. The former church is now a museum.

New aviculture article site unveiled by Known World Aviculturists Guild founder

Lady Biya Fujin unveiled a new aviculture resource section on her web site.  The new "articles" section of Lady Biya Fujin's web site now features articles on a wide range of topics, mostly focused on medieval aviculture, presented for the first time as standard webtext.

Known World Aviculturists Guild on Facebook

The Known World Aviculturists Guild has its web presence on Facebook, with a site featuring research resources such as links, period illuminations, and discussions by guild members on a wide range of aviculture topics.  A bird is not required to participate in their Society-wide guild--only a genuine interest in how companion birds shaped medieval life.

Sackler Gallery receives collection of Tibetan Buddhist Art

The Arthur M. Sackler Gallery in Washington D.C. has announced that it has received a collection of Tibetan Buddhist art from collector Alice S. Kandell. Objects in the collection date from the 12th through 20th centuries CE.

16th century Chinese bronze found in shipwreck off Mexico

A 16th century Chinese bronze in the form of a Foo Dog has been found off the Pacific coast of Baja, Mexico. The artifact is believed to come from the cargo of the galleon San Felipe which disappeared in 1576.

Mysteries of the Silk Road revealed at Penn Museum

Colin Renfrew, Senior Fellow of the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research at the University of Cambridge, offers a lecture on the Unsolved Mysteries of the Silk Road. The video is available on YouTube.

Persimmon dye from ancient Korea finds new foothold in modern world

Galot, fabric died with the juice of unripe persimmons, likely originated in Korea in the 15th century and became the mainstay clothing of farmers and fisherman. Largely lost to the centuries, a fashion designer is reviving the art on the resort island of Jeju.

Indonesian fishermen find medieval shipwreck

Fishermen in Indonesia have found a shipwreck that probably dates to the 14th century. The wooden ship contains green and gray ceramics similar to what Chinese merchants traded at the time.

Objets d'Art documented at the Art Institute of Chicago

In October 2010, Rohesia Anven of Thessalonica, from the Kingdom of Atlantia, visited the Art Institute of Chicago and documented many of the museum's period objects in an amazing collection of photographs. Her album is available on Picasaweb.

Stunning Afghan treasures to go on display in England

Over 200 objects, including a 1st century 'collapsible' gold crown, on loan from the National Museum of Afghanistan, will go on display for the first time at the British Museum. The traveling exhibit, Afghanistan: Crossroads Of The Ancient World, will be in London March 3 to July 3 2011. (photos)

Persian masterpiece on display at the Sackler Gallery

The Arthur M. Sackler Gallery in Washington D.C. offers the exhibit Shahnama: 1000 Years of the Persian Book of Kings October 23, 2010 - April 17, 2011. The rare paintings of kings, heroes and mythological creatures are from the Shahnama, Iran's national epic.

Titania's Garden Art Jewelry and Chain Maille by Jennifer Wong

Titania's Garden artist Jennifer Wong creates and purveys jewelry from metal and stones, as well as chain maille jewelry.