BBC News

British Broadcasting Corporation

Wenlok Jug stolen from English museum

A hunt continues to recover a medieval bronze jug stolen from the Stockwood Discovery Centre in Luton, England. The "nationally significant" Wenlok Jug was taken from the museum May 12, 2012.

The castles of Wales

The BBC offers a beautiful 10-photo slideshow of castles in Wales. The photos include a date and a short description of the castles.

The myth of the "Tudor Era"

"The word 'Tudor' is used obsessively by historians," says Dr Cliff Davies of Oxford University "But it was almost unknown at the time." Davies research shows that the term "Tudor" was rarely used during the period.

The Dark Ages: Everything old is new again

In a new documentary, filmmaker and historian Michael Wood compares the economic gloom and social unrest of modern Europe with conditions in the western world at the beginning of the Dark Ages.

Thieves steal crusader statue from church window

Sometime between May 13-16, 2012, thieves chiseled the small stone statue of a knight from a window frame in St Michael's Church in Castle Frome, near Ledbury, England. The little knight is thought to commemorate a knight in the Crusades.

British couple share passion for history

Tony and Claire Thorpe of Dorset, England should never have met. He's a "heathen warrior in chain mail armour," and she's a World War II French nurse.

Hadrian's Wall Heritage receives UK£500,000 grant

The central section of Hadrian's Wall in northern England has been listed on the Heritage at Risk register for some time, but now a grant of UK£500,000 from the SITA Trust will allow Hadrian's Wall Heritage to repair and preserve the important historical site.

Lizzie Stark leaves Mundania

Freelance journalist Lizzie Stark wrote the book on LARPing, literally. Her Leaving Mundania explains the fantasy world of Live Action Role Playing games from D&D-types to Nordic avant-garde art LARP. She explains the appeal in a short video for the BBC.

Scotland's first bullaun stone discovered on Isle of Canna

Scottish archeaologists are excited about the discovery of a bullaun or "cursing stone" linked to an early Christian cross on the Isle of Canna. The small, round stone, marked with a cross, dates to around 800 CE. (photo)

Lincoln Castle's Magna Carta to receive new vault

Lincoln Castle, in Lincolnshire County, England, will receive a facelift thanks to grants and fundraising amounting to almost UK£19m. Improvements will include a new viewing vault for the Magna Carta. (video)

New Glastonbury Thorn vandalized

In 2010 vandals damaged the fabled Holy Thorn tree of Glastonbury, England, said to have been a cutting of the thorn first planted by Joseph of Arimathea. Now the replacement tree, planted soon after, has also been vandalized.

Cirencester's Roman amphitheatre to be revamped

The Cirencester town council has plans for their city's Roman ruins, including "the remains of one of the largest Roman amphitheatres in Britain."

Elizabethan medal illustrates explorers' influence

In a YouTube video, Neil MacGregor discusses a small silver medal commorating the 1577-80 around-the-world voyage of Sir Francis Drake. The video is part of the BBC program entitled Shakespeare's Restless World.(video)

Research reveals Middle Ages' dirtiest books

New research by experts at St Andrews University in Scotland reveals the reading habits of medieval people by determining accumulations of dirt on each page.

Fighting threatens historic Timbuktu

Fighting following a military junta in northern Mali is threatening the historic architectural and cultural center of Timbuktu, on the edge of the Sahara Desert. The city's 60 private libraries are a repository for over 700,000 ancient Islamic manuscripts.

Tudor costumes and weapons stolen from Northampton re-enactor

The education of school children in Northampton, England will be poorer after the theft of a van containing costumes and equipment belonging to re-enactor Steve Parish. Parish, who runs Past Alive, teaches children about English history.

"King size" bed returns to Ware, England

Since 1931, the Great Bed of Ware has been a beloved feature of the Victoria and Albert Museum. The three metres wide bed was built in 1590 by Hertfordshire carpenter Jonas Fosbrooke. (photo)

"Disgusting attack" on York's medieval hospital appalls local police

"This is a disgusting attack on York's heritage and those responsible should be deeply ashamed," said a North Yorkshire Police spokesman about recent graffiti inscribed on the ruins of York's 12th century St Leonard's Hospital. (photo)

Cathedrals: "our greatest architectural glories”

In a recent article and podcast for BBC News Magazine, David Cannadine "looks at a selection of the world's cathedrals and the important contribution that they have made to the broader lives of their respective cities and countries."

St. Johns skeletons prove to be Vikings

In 2008, 37 skeletons were discovered buried at St John's College in Oxford, England. Once believed to have been victoms of the 1002 St Brice's Day Massacre, the remains are now believed to be Viking raiders.

Horseback archery encouraged at British mosque

One of the last things one might expect to find at a mosque would be archery practice, but for members of Woking, England's Shah Jahan Mosque, archery is not only tolerated, but encouraged.

Plastic wrap removed to reveal renovation of 13th Century castle

Roch Castle near Haverfordwest, Wales has had a UK£6m facelift  and conversion as a "corporate retreat". During the two-year renovation, the 13th century castle was "completely wrapped in plastic."

Post-punk band goes medieval in new album

Sumer Is Icumen In is believed to be the oldest known song in the English language. Now the post-punk band, The Futureheads, is giving the song new life when it is included in their a cappella album Rant, to be released in April 2012.

Artifacts found at site of Roman fort in Scotland

A team of archaeologists, supervising the installation of a water main through the site of a Roman fort near Kirkton, Scotland, has discovered a cobbled roads and artifacts dating to Roman times.

Solving the mystery of Roman Wales

Visitors to Caerleon, near Newport in south Wales have long admired the huge 1st century Roman amphitheater, the site of gladiatorial combat, but new discoveries point to the area as an important Roman outpost in Britain. (video)

Heart of St Laurence O'Toole stolen from Dublin cathedral

Police in Dublin, Ireland are puzzled by the theft of the heart of St Laurence O'Toole, a 12th century relic housed at Christ Church Cathedral. The heart, in a wooden box, was stolen March 2, 2012 when the protective metal bars were cut.

Behind-the-scenes look at the treasures of the Mary Rose

Take in inside look at the artifacts recovered from the Tudor ship the Mary Rose with BBC South Today's Sally Taylor and historic weapon expert and actor Robert Hardy in a BBC video clip.

British universities come together to study Vikings

"Experts coming together to pass on their knowledge to students in the beautiful environments of Oxford and Kirkwall - what could be better?" said Dr Donna Heddle, director of the Orkney-based Centre for Nordic Studies about the collaboration of scottish and English universities on Viking studies.

Summer Was Deadly for Tudors

Recent research indicates that summertime produced the most fatal accidents during the 16th century.

Volcanoes key to "Little Ice Age"

A new study, led by Gifford Miller at the University of Colorado at Boulder, US, may show that a series of volcanic eruptions around 1300 may have led to the Little Ice Age, which dropped temperatures in Europe in the 1500s.