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US returns stolen Columbus letter to Italy

A rare printed copy of Christopher Columbus’ letter describing what the people and placed he’d found on his famous transatlantic voyage that was stolen from the Riccardiana Library in Florence, Italy, has been found in the Library of Congress and returned to Italy. Nobody knows exactly when the red leather-bound volume that included the letter [...]

Louvre and Rijksmuseum co-parent Rembrandt portraits

Marten Soolmans (1613-1641) was the son of a wealthy Calvinist sugar refiner who had fled Antwerp and the wars of religion for Amsterdam in 1585. In 1628, Marten, then just 15 years old, went to college in Leiden where he studied law and met a young painter named Rembrandt Van Rijn. Jurisprudence didn’t work out, [...]

Rare ancient nilometer found in Nile Delta

Workers digging a water pump station in the ancient city of Thmuis discovered an ancient nilometer, a structure used to determine the water level of the Nile River. A team of American and Egyptian archaeologists from the University of Hawaii and the Alexandria Center for Hellenistic Studies have excavated the find and believe it dates [...]

Midweek at Polis

Today has been an interesting day. It has been a pretty day, lots of sunshine and a nice breeze keeping the temperature down. At the apotheke, it was a little unusual this morning. On one hand, we got through the … Continue reading ...

Roman fort built after Boudiccan revolt found in London

A Roman fort built in London in the aftermath of the Boudiccan uprising is shedding new light on this little-known period in the development of the capital. The site, on the edge of the early town 750 feet or so northeast of Roman-era London Bridge, was excavated by experts from the Museum of London Archaeology [...]

Continuing Along

Things are starting to move a bit faster here at Polis, and more people are arriving here every day. Last week, it was just Bill and me, by Saturday night, there will be twelve people working on the Polis material, … Continue readin...

Rome subway build finds Praetorian guard barracks

Construction of Rome’s third subway line, Metro Line C, has made a sensational discovery: the remains of a 2nd century Praetorian Guard barracks. Thirty feet under Via Ipponio between the Baths of Caracalla and the Basilica of St. John in Lateran in the historic center of Rome, the barracks cover an astonishing 1,753 square meters [...]

Long Day

Yesterday was a long day for me, and not because of work at the apotheke. We put in our usual day’s work, nothing really different happened – except for Bill’s unprovoked assault on my choice of music to listen to … Continue reading...

Conscientious objector graffiti to be preserved

Hundreds of graffiti on left on the walls of Richmond Castle by conscientious objectors during World War I will be preserved by English Heritage, thanks to the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund. Richmond Castle was built a few years after the Battle of Hastings by the Alan Rufus, a relative of William the Conqueror’s [...]

Thomas Jefferson’s hair sells for $491 a strand

The first lock of hair from the head of third President of the United States and author of the Declaration of Independence Thomas Jefferson ever to be offered at public auction sold on Saturday, May 14th, for $6,875 including the buyer’s premium. You might think for that amount you’d get traditional tuft of hair, maybe [...]

Sunday

Last night we went out for dinner and decided to do a Cypriot meze, a course of lots of small dishes. We chose the meat meze, and it was quite a bit of food. And I mean a lot. It was … Continue reading ?

Saturday at the Apotheke

Since it today was Saturday and the museum closes early, we were only able to work a half of a day. Things are pretty much in a routine and we are moving through the pottery pretty quickly. We have read a … Continue reading ?

New detailed 3D sonar image of Agnes E. Fry

When side scan sonar found the wreck of an iron-hulled Civil War steamer off Oak Island, North Carolina, on February 27th, 2016, researchers from the Underwater Archaeology Branch of the North Carolina Office of State Archaeology identified it as one of three blockade runners known to have gone down in the area: the Agnes E. [...]

Chips and Dibs

So, today we started a normal routine of going to the apotheke to look at pottery, or so we hoped. Unfortunately, we had another minor setback with the door to the apotheke (we had a similar problem yesterday), and needed some … Continue reading ?

Egyptian coffin holds youngest known mummified fetus

A tiny ancient Egyptian coffin previously believed to hold mummified organs has been found to contain the youngest known example of a mummified fetus. Mummified fetuses are rare in the archaeological record of ancient Egypt. Two mummified fetuses in coffins were found in Tutankhamun’s tomb, but they were at about 25 weeks and 37 weeks [...]

Day 1 in Polis

So, today was our first day working at the apotheke in Polis. We got off to a late start, and that might have been my fault. I woke up at 5:00 am, and was thinking about checking my email, and then … Continue reading ?

Britain’s biggest gold nugget found near shipwreck in Wales

A treasure hunter has found the largest nugget of gold ever discovered in the UK near the shipwreck of the Royal Charter off the coast of Anglesey, northwest Wales. Vincent Thurkettle was shallow diving when he spotted the nugget in a crevice about 40 meters (131 feet) from the wreck and just five meters (16 [...]

2017 Cyprus Work

As I boarded the plane for my trip over to Cyprus Monday, I realized that this was my 20th summer in the Mediterranean. This realization made me feel very old. Anyway, I made it over without incidence, other than the … Continue reading ?

NPG acquires rare album of photos by Victorian pioneer

The National Portrait Gallery has acquired a rare album of albumen prints by Victorian photographer Oscar Gustav Rejlander, a pioneer of art photography and photomontage. The album contains 70 photographs of known and unknown people taken in the mid-1800s. They include portraits of Rejlander, his wife Mary, Hallam Tennyson, son of Lord Alfred Tennyson, poet [...]

USS Monitor turret conservation ramps back up

Conservation of the 120-ton revolving gun turret of the USS Monitor, raised from the protected wreck site off Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, on August 5th, 2002, is ramping back up this month after years of painful budgetary restrictions that saw the conservation staff reduced by half and left the massive remnant of the ironclad vessel [...]

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