Christianity

Byzantine floor may have graced church in Jerusalem

The discovery of a simple mosaic floor beneath Temple Mount's Aksa Mosque has led archaeologists to speculate that the Mosque may have superceded a Byzantine church, but other experts disagree.

Cistercians in Yorkshire Project

The Cistercians in Yorkshire Project, a UK£50 million UK-wide digitalization program, is "designed to enable the learning materials and resources currently contained in galleries, communities, libraries, museums, universities and other centres of excellence, to be directly accessible to homes and communities via the internet."

Sotheby's auction catalogue offers delights

On December 8, 2008, Sotheby's Auction House in London will be auctioning a number of western and oriental manuscripts. A catalogue of the items with closeups and descriptions is available to view online.

Digging up dirt on Martin Luther

German scientists are taking an unusual approach to studying the domestic life of 16th century churchman Martin Luther. They are digging through his garbage.

Did Norse bring Christianity to Scotland?

A team of archaeologists from the University of Nottingham are trying to determine if Vikings brought Christianity to Caithness, Scotland before Saint Columba brought the religion to Iona. (video)

Jewels and saints highlight Walters Art Museum exhibits

The Walters Art Museum in Baltimore, Maryland is hosting two exhibits dealing with subjects of interest to medievalists: The Special Dead: a Medieval Reliquary Revealed and Bedazzled: 5,000 Years of Jewelry. Both exhibits will be open until January 2009.

"Millennium" sheds light on the Dark Ages

Millennium, a new book by Tom Holland, takes a look at the Dark Ages with special focus on politics, religion and the combination of the two: the Crusades. Christina Hardyment of The Independent has a review.

Sacred sounds in New York City

The Church of St. Mary the Virgin recently rang with the sounds of choral polyphony when the Tallis Scholars, led by Peter Phillips presented a program of Spanish Renaissance music as part of Columbia University's early music series. Allan Kozinn of the New York Times has a review.

Abbey Library of St. Gallen manuscripts to go online

Gwynedd reports that "One of the oldest and most valuable collections of handwritten medieval books in the world, housed in the magnificent baroque halls of the library in this town's abbey (St. Gallen, Switzerland), is going online with the help of a US$1 million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation."

Dead Sea Scrolls come to the ROM in 2009

The Royal Ontario Museum has announced that it will bring sixteen of the Dead Sea Scrolls to Toronto for an exhibit which will run June 27, 2009, until Jan. 3, 2010.

Extras needed for "Soldiers of Christ"

Clint Buckner from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts in Winston-Salem is looking for a few extras for a short film he is producing. The film will be shot the weekends of November 8-10 and November 15-17, 2008.

Monastery discovery sheds new light on the Picts

Long dismissed as savages who hindered the advancement of civilization in Scotland and the North of England, the Picts are now being seen as a sophisticated culture "capable of great art, learning and the use of complex architectural principles."

Queen Claude Prayer Book acquired by Morgan Library

Several months ago, the Morgan Library and Museum received a new treasure: the prayer book of Queen Claude of France, a contemporary of Anne Boleyn. Bound in red velvet, the book is smaller than a credit card and contains "fifty-two folios, painted front and back with a hundred and thirty-two miniature illuminations."

Codex Sinaiticus to be available online

The Codex Sinaiticus, a 1,600-year-old version of Bible, has been digitized and is being made available online. The manuscript is one of the oldest versions of the Bible.

Knights Templar demand redress from the Pope

700 years after the Knights Templar were eradicated by the Catholic Church, the Association of the Sovereign Order of the Temple of Christ has launched a court case in Spain demanding that the Church exonerate the Order and return assets worth EU€100bn.

Mojo cursed in ancient Cyprus

A 7th century curse inscribed on a tablet has been found by archaeologists working near Limassol, Cyprus. The inscription curses the sexual prowess of men and may be linked to the island's pagan past. PG-13.

Medieval "beguine" movement still alive in Belgium

Life was tough for women in the 13th century, especially those who had lost their husbands and protectors to the Crusades. Experts believe this was the origin of the "beguines — a Roman Catholic laic order that began in the 13th century and branched across northwest Europe."

"Experimental archaeology" at Lysts of Castleton

Recently, a group of SCA members from the Kingdom of Ansteorra undertook an exercise in "experimental archaeology" at the Lysts at Castleton event. The Monks of Castleton spent the event re-creating the monastic lifestyle.

6th century presses from "holy wine factory" found near Mount Sinai

Egyptian archaeologists have discovered two wine presses dating to the 6th century which are believed to be from a factory which produced holy wine for export to Christians. The presses were found near the 6th century St. Catherine's Monastery on the Sinai Peninsula.

St Margaret's church in Leicester, England ransacked by vandals

Police in Leicester, England report that vandals broke into and desecrated a 13th century church in the city's center, overturning lecterns, breaking windows and defecating through a floor panel into the church's medieval foundation.

Life lessons learned on El Camino de Santiago

Modern spiritual seekers are finding value in a medieval pilgrimage. Spain's 500-mile-long El Camino de Santiago gives participants plenty of time to meditate. Jillian Mueller of the Christian Science Monitor chronicles her journey.

"Michelangelo Code" latest renaissance mystery

Reminiscent of "The Da Vinci Code," a decades-old mystery involves the claim that Michelangelo painted subversive messages into his frescoes in the Sistine Chapel, including "secret" profile of the medieval poet Dante and a portrait of Jesus on the cross.

Rare display of Shroud of Turin scheduled

The Turin Shroud will be displayed in public for the first time in ten years, coinciding with a new series of scientific tests. The Shroud has only been displayed five times in the past century.

Mummies on display in Capuchin monastery

The mummified remains of over 8,000 monks and city luminaries make for a strange tourist destination, but that is what visitors will find at the Capuchin Catacombs in Palermo, Sicily. The remains date from the 16th century.

Practice Latin on the Vatican website

An ancient tongue gets a modern boost with the creation of Sancta Sedes, a Latin section of the Vatican's website which features papal texts and religious works.

Lead church roofs target of English thieves

England's historic churches are facing a new enemy: lead thieves, who are now stealing strips of lead from church roofs. The thefts are being blamed on the record high price that lead brings.

[DRA] Winchester Pilgrimage III

description:
Come all ye pilgrims and travellers, and join the Shire of West Dragoningshire for a pilgrimage at the Hospital of St Cross and Almshouse of Noble Poverty. Share with us in an evening of Chaucer; a morning pilgrimage to Winchester Cathedral, during which we will be tested on our knowledge of such things that would be known by pilgrims of yore; an afternoon demonstration of our fighting skills and an evening of feasting Location:
Shire of West Dragoningshire (Winchester, England)

Crusaders left genetic mark on the Middle East

Scientists from the Genographic Project, which is tracking human migrations through DNA, have found traces of a particular DNA signature in Lebanon which they link to European crusaders.

French Templar tomb found

The remains of a Templar knight have been discovered in a tomb near Rennes-le-Chateau, France along with a cache of gold and coins. The mummified body wore the still-recognizable shroud of the order. (video)

Thief rips off 288 pages from Scottish Catholic Archives

A man posing as a student was caught stealing pages from archives in London. He admitted that he stole them from the Catholic Church in Edinburgh as well.