BBC News

British Broadcasting Corporation

York's "Ivory Bangle Lady" of African origin

Recent analysis of a Roman burial in the city of York show that the remains belonged to a "high status" woman of African origin. Dubbed the "Ivory Bangle Lady," the woman was buried in the late 4th century along with "items including jet and elephant ivory bracelets, earrings, beads and a blue glass jug." (photos)

Experts believe they have found true site of Battle of Bosworth Field

A new study of documents, artifacts, and archaeological surveys seem to prove the true location of the Battle of Bosworth, the site of the death of King Richard of England. (map & photo)

12th century leper hospital explored in England

A team of young archeologists is excavating the site of the St Mary Magdalen leper hospital in Winchester. A BBC video chronicles the recent finds at the site. (video)

Burial a "glimpse into Sleaford's Roman past"

Recent archaeological finds in the town of Sleaford, England prove that the town "was a very large and important settlement in the Roman period." Among the discoveries were the skeleton of a 4th century woman.

Roman bones show life of "disease and hard labour"

The discovery of a Roman grave in Weston-super-Mare, England last year has given experts insight into the life of 2nd-4th century Roman inhabitants of Britain. This particular man, aged between 36 and 45,  lived a life "defined by disease and hard labour."

Late medieval walls found below Edinburgh esplanade

Construction on new viewing stands for the Edinburgh Military Tattoo has revealed two structures dating to the late medieval period. The walls were believed to have formed part of the defense of the castle.

Brits balk at paying Henry's "Deer Tax"

500 years ago, merchants abutting Bushy Park in London were required to pay a "deer tax," a compensation for any deer which left the park. Today, the tax is still in effect and taxpayers are getting restless.

Medieval and Renaissance Galleries open at the V&A

"We're wanting to shed light on the dark Middle Ages," said chief curator Peta Motture about lighting conditions at the new Medieval and Renaissance exhibits at London's Victoria and Albert Museum. Tim Masters, entertainment and arts correspondent for BBC News has the story.

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)

Shakespeare's New Place to be excavated

Archaeologists in Stratford-upon-Avon are preparing to excavate the New Place, the remains of Shakespeare's last home.

New theories abound on Lewis Chessmen

David Caldwell of the National Museum of Scotland does not believe the recognized theory that the famous Chessmen of Lewis belonged to a merchant passing through Scotland. Caldwell thinks the owner was a noble who lived in the area, and that the pieces may not have been "chessmen" at all.

3rd century Roman townhouse found under Canterbury theater

Archaeologists have discovered the ruins of a 3rd century Roman townhouse beneath the Marlowe Theatre in Canterbury, England. "It's quite unexpected," said archaeologist James Holman.

Buy Ewloe Castle for as little as UK£80,000?

Ewloe Castle, a Welsh structure built in the 13th century by Llywelyn ap Gruffydd, is scheduled to be auctioned December 8, 2009. Starting bid? UK£80,000. (photo)

Calling AAA: Mons Meg has a flat

Historic Scotland experts were called in recently to assess damage to Mons Meg, the historic cannon on the ramparts of Edinburgh Castle, which has a broken wheel.

Metal detector finds UK£1m torcs

Metal detector enthusiast David Booth was "stunned" to learn that four Iron Age gold torcs, dating to late Roman times, could bring him over UK£1m. The torcs were discovered in September 2009 in Stirlingshire, Scotland. (photo & video)

BBC looks "Behind the Book of Omens"

On its website, BBC America has posted a series of videos on the Freer and Sackler Galleries exhibit Falnama: Behind the Book of Omens, the exhibit, which runs through January 24, 2010. The exhibit focuses on "a group of rare and unusual manuscripts that were once used to explore the unknown through divination in 16th- and 17th-century Iran and Turkey."

Organic chemist claims to have reproduced the Shroud of Turin

An Italian scientist claims to have reproduced the image on the Shroud of Turin using only materials and techniques known in the Middle Ages. Luigi Garlaschelli, who will present his findings at a conference, said, "The result obtained clearly indicates that this could be done with the use of inexpensive materials and with a quite simple procedure."

"High status" Saxon brooch found in South Oxfordshire

Metal detectorists at a rally in South Oxfordshire have discovered a 6th century Saxon grave yielding a skull and a garnet brooch belonging to some of "high status."

Roman skeleton really Goth

The 5th century skeleton of a man, discovered in 1972 in Gloucester, England, has been identified as a Goth, originating from east of the Danube River. Experts feel that the man was most likely a Roman soldier.

Huge Anglo-Saxon gold hoard found

The BBC is reporting on a treasure find in England that rivals that of the Sutton Hoo burial, if not in quality then certainly in quantity.

Canterbury's oak rafters date to Norman times

Restoration work at England's Canterbury Cathedral has uncovered oak roof rafters dating to the time of William the Conqueror. While much of the cathedral's roof has been destroyed and rebuilt over the centuries, some of the 11th century timbers survive.

18 million parish records to be published online by ancestry.co.uk

In the mid-16th century, Thomas Cromwell, King Henry VIII's vicar-general, began the collecting of London parish records. Now 18 million of these records will be available on the ancestry.co.uk website.

Land grudge brought about Bosworth treachery

Historians have long held that Richard III was killed at Bosworth field in retribution for his slaying of his nephews, the young, rightful heirs, but new evidence may show a different motive: a decade-old power struggle between Richard and William Stanley.

UK£138,000 English Heritage.grant saves 14th century chapel

Matthew Saunders, honorary director of The Friends of Friendless Churches in Mundon, England, reports that the organization has received a UK£138,000 grant from English Heritage to preserve St Mary's Church, the medieval chapel of a manor house. (photo)

Genetic studies show crusaders influenced religion in Lebanon

A new study shows that some Lebanese men carry genes traceable to Western Europe, a heritage, say researchers, from Crusaders who established settlements and castles in the country in the 11th through 13th centuries.

Ventotene shipwrecks excite world of Roman archaeology

The discovery of the wrecks of five 3rd - 5th century Roman shipwrecks off the coast of the Italian island of Ventotene has excited the world of Roman-era research. "It is like an underwater museum," said one expert.

BBC Radio 4 presents "Tales Before the Stave"

A thirty-minute podcast from BBC Radio 4 features the story of the Winchester Troper, a seminal musical book created around 1030 CE in Winchester, England.

Database catalogs soldiers' records from Hundred Years War

A new web site provides searchable databases of the detailed service records of 250,000 medieval soldiers, including archers who served with Henry V at the Battle of Agincourt.

Battle records of English soldiers 1369 to 1453 now online

The detailed service records of 250,000 soldiers who served during the Hundred Years War is now availa le to view online. The website, sponsored by Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), was the brainchild of Anne Curry of the University of Southampton and Dr Adrian Bell of the University of Reading.

Codex Sinaiticus now available online

After years of restoration and digitalization, the Codex Sinaiticus, the earliest surviving Christian Bible, is now available online.