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Crowds wait 10 hours to spend minutes with “China’s Mona Lisa”

Along the River During the Qingming Festival is a 12th century painted handscroll by Song Dynasty artist Zhang Zeduan (1085–1145) which is widely considered the greatest painting in China. Some scholars have dubbed it “China’s Mona Lisa,” because of its immense cultural hold, but artistically it has nothing in common with Renaissance portraiture. The almost [...]

Michigan soybean farmer digs up mammoth bones

Soybean farmer Jim Bristle was digging in a field in Lima Township, 10 miles southwest of Ann Arbor, Michigan, when he came across what he thought was an old bent fencepost. It was not a fencepost. It was a mammoth bone. When he realized it was a bone very much larger than any cow’s, Bristle [...]

Mummification more widespread in Bronze Age Britain

A new study by the University of Sheffield has found new evidence that mummification may have been more widespread in Bronze Age Britain than previously realized. The damp climate is not conducive to the preservation of soft tissues, so unless a body was preserved in an aerobic environment like a peat bog, trying to figure [...]

3 Civil War cannons raised from Pee Dee River

A team of archaeologists from the University of South Carolina have raised three Civil War cannons from the Pee Dee River in Mars Bluff, South Carolina. The cannons were the armament of the Confederate gunboat CSS Pee Dee which launched in January of 1865 and was deliberately scuttled by her crew just a month later [...]

Plaster casts of Pompeii given first CAT scans

CAT scans on 30 of the recently restored plaster casts of people killed in the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 A.D. have found that Pompeiians had far better teeth than their modern counterparts. The scans showed the victims’ teeth were in excellent condition (the orthodontist who analyzed the scans called their teeth “perfect”) without a [...]

Leonidas Part VI: Leonidas the Soldier

No, this is not about Thermopylae. This is about Leonidas’ entire military career. First and foremost, Leonidas was one of the few Spartan kings, who was a professional military man. Unlike the Spartan kings before and almost all the...Show More Summary

Erebus summer dive season goes swimmingly

Parks Canada‘s Underwater Archaeology Team has more than doubled the dive time on the wreck of the HMS Erebus thanks to an unexpected bout of good weather this summer. Divers explored the wreck from August 28th to September 10th, logging a total of 100 dives and 109 hours underwater. The excellent visibility and comparative warmth [...]

This Day in Ancient History ~ ante diem iii kalendas octobres

ante diem iii kalendas octobres 106 B.C. — birth of Gnaeus Pompeius 61 B.C. — Pompey celebrates his third triumph in recognition of his victories in the Third Mithridatic War 48 B.C. — Pompeius Magnus, in the wake of his defeat at Pharsalus, is murdered as he steps ashore in Egypt (another possible date … […]

Repititationes ~ 09/28/15

2015.09.44: Coulter H. George, Expressions of Time in Ancient Greek. Cambridge Classical… — BMCR (@BMCReview) September 28, 2015 Emeritus Professor Richard Green receiving his Order of Australia award in London...Show More Summary

New clay tablet adds 20 lines to Epic of Gilgamesh

A newly discovered clay tablet in the Sulaymaniah Museum in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq has corrected the order of chapters, filled in blanks and added 20 lines to the Epic of Gilgamesh. Since the invasion of Iraq and subsequent orgy of looting, the museum has a matter of policy paid smugglers to keep artifacts [...]

Speaking of Pompey’s Murder …

As part of our ‘Grand Tour’ this summer, our relatives took us to the Chateau  de Modave, which is in the province of Liege in Belgium and is a fine example of what the ‘second’ and ‘third’ tier nobility of the Renaissance would have enjoyed as a country house. Amongst several items of Classical interest […]

This Day in Ancient History ~ ante diem iv kalendas octobres

ante diem iv kalendas octobres 48 B.C. — Pompeius Magnus, in the wake of his defeat at Pharsalus, is murdered as he steps ashore in Egypt

Reptitiationes ~ 09/27/15

Explorator 18.23 ~ September 27, 2015 | Explorator — rogueclassicist (@rogueclassicist) September 27, 2015 Available: Postumus Cologne RIC 80 Providentia Ch VF (EB-4470) More Summary

Oldest decapitation in the Americas found in Brazil

A severed skull and hands found in a rock shelter in east-central Brazil in 2007 is the oldest known instance of decapitation in the Americas. Radiocarbon dating of a fragment of cranial bone returned an age range of 9,100-9,400 years before the present. The oldest known decapitation in North America was found in Windover Pond, [...]

Rijksmuseum acquires marksmen’s guild chain

The Rijksmuseum has fulfilled a long-denied wish of one its planners by acquiring a rare 16th century marksmen’s guild chain. The silver chain with gilding and enamel decoration has no maker’s mark, but it was made in Bergen op Zoom or Breda for the marksmen’s guild Saint George of Zevenbergen. The Schuttersgilde were voluntary militias [...]

1000-year-old sarcophagus found in Odense

Odense, Denmark, land of wonderous barrels of poop, has produced another treasure from deep within its bowels: an 11th century stone sarcophagus. The coffin was found on the site of the small timber church of St. Alban’s Priory where King Canute IV of Denmark, later canonized a saint, was assassinated by rebels in 1086. A [...]

Olmec relief looted 45 years ago found in France

An Olmec relief chiselled off a rock face in the southern Mexican state of Chiapas in the early 70s has surfaced in France and was officially returned to Mexico in a ceremony at the Mexican Embassy in Paris. The relief was discovered at the archaeological site of Xoc and dates to between 1,150 and 900 [...]

Medieval bones found under 1950?s Westminster Abbey lavoratory

Demolition of a 1950s block of bathrooms outside Westminster Abbey’s Poet’s Corner has revealed scores of human skeletal remains dating to the 11th and early 12th century. The lavatory block is being removed to make way for the Abbey’s first new tower in almost 300 years, a subtle addition nestled behind the buttresses of the [...]

Getty and Armenian Church reach agreement over stolen Bible pages

Five years ago, the Western Prelacy of the Armenian Apostolic Church of America filed a $105 million lawsuit against the J. Paul Getty Museum alleging that the museum was wrongfully in possession of seven pages ripped out of the 13th century Bible that belongs to the Church. Now the parties have come to an agreement: [...]

Intact 4th c. B.C. Samnite tomb found in Pompeii

A 4th century B.C. Samnite tomb has been found in the necropolis of Porta Ercolano, a burial ground just outside Pompeii’s northwest gate a few steps from the famous Villa of the Mysteries (see the top left corner on this map). The necropolis was in use from the 1st century B.C. until the city’s destruction [...]

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