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The Battle For Richard III's Bones

The Battle For Richard III's Bones Aug 20th, 2013 at 11:00AM: University of Leicester King Richard III just can't rest in peace. He was the last of the Plantagenet dynasty, and after being killed at the Battle of Bosworth in 1485 by the rival Tudor dynasty, his body was mutilated, stabbed in the ass and buried in a hastily dug grave in the local friary in Leicester. The friary was later destroyed and his grave lost. For a while there was an outhouse right...

Pyramids Discovered In Egypt And Sudan

Pyramids Discovered In Egypt And Sudan Feb 24th, 2013 at 12:00PM: You'd think archaeologists would have found all the pyramids of Africa by now, but two recent discoveries show there's a lot more discovering to be done. A team of archaeologists working in Luxor, Egypt, have just announced they've discovered the pyramid of Khay, a powerful vizier of the Pharaoh Ramses II (ruled 1279-1212 B.C.). The pyramid was made of mudbrick and originally stood 49 feet...

Visiting Ur, Ctesiphon, And Babylon In Iraq

Visiting Ur, Ctesiphon, And Babylon In Iraq Nov 30th, 2012 at 10:00AM: Iraq is an ancient land. It's seen a lot of civilizations come and go and each one has left behind spectacular monuments and rare treasures. On a recent visit, I had the privilege to experience many of these sites. Last time, I talked about the monuments of the Assyrian Empire. Today, I want to talk about three more of Iraq's ancient wonders. Perhaps the most famous is Babylon. It was the...

How Could An Ancient City Survive In The Desert?

How Could An Ancient City Survive In The Desert? Jun 22nd, 2012 at 1:00PM: The drive through the Syrian desert to the ancient city of Palmyra makes you wonder how anyone lived out here 2000 years ago. For hours you speed east from Damascus along a dusty desert road, the only sights being a few dull concrete buildings, Bedouin with their herds and a thick black telephone line snaking along the ground next to the highway. Once you get to Palmyra, you find a lush...

Archaeologists Uncover Suburb Of Giant Largest Prehistoric City

Archaeologists Uncover Suburb Of Giant Largest Prehistoric City Jun 3rd, 2012 at 11:00AM: The ancient city of Cahokia in Illinois was the center of an advanced civilization from about 700 to 1400 A.D. Covering six square miles and home to up to 20,000 people, it was the largest prehistoric city north of Mexico. It ruled over a large area and had trade networks stretching across North America. Dozens of mounds dot the site, atop which the people built temples and homes for the...

Sparta: Greece's ancient warrior city

Sparta: Greece's ancient warrior city Feb 8th, 2012 at 10:00AM: After having seen Athens and Corinth, I couldn't resist visiting one of the other great city-states of ancient Greece: Sparta. Sparta needs no introduction. It's a star player on the History and Discovery channels and that schlocky pseudo-historical film 300. While I wanted to see the ancient ruins where brave warriors once strode, my main reason for going was to explore nearby Mistra, a...

Archaeologists search for missing medieval king

Archaeologists search for missing medieval king Dec 16th, 2011 at 3:00PM: Archaeologists love a good mystery, and some researchers in Sweden have themselves a big one. Earlier this year a research team opened what they believed to be the tomb of King Magnus Ladulås, who ruled Sweden from 1275-90. Magnus was a popular king with the commoners and earned the nickname "Ladulås", which means "lock the barn", for his law giving peasants the right to refuse free...

Ancient palace discovered in Sudan

Ancient palace discovered in Sudan Aug 6th, 2011 at 11:00AM: Archaeologists digging in the ancient city of Meroë in the Sudan have discovered what they believe is a palace dating to 900 BC. The team discovered the building under the remains of a later palace. It's believed to be the oldest building yet discovered at the site, which was once the capital of the Kingdom of Kush. Kush had several great cities and exported iron all the way to China....

Discoveries at a Templar abbey in Ireland

Discoveries at a Templar abbey in Ireland Jul 3rd, 2011 at 9:00AM: Mourne Abbey in County Cork, Ireland, has been the focus of an archaeological excavation to discover more about the history of this medieval religious center. The abbey was built around 1199 by the Knights Templar. After the rulers of Europe turned on the Templars and destroyed the order in 1307, resulting in 700 years of conspiracy theories, the abbey was handed over to the Knights...

Gladiator died because of ref's error, says archaeologist

Gladiator died because of ref's error, says archaeologist Jun 19th, 2011 at 12:00PM: A gladiator who fought 1,800 years ago may have died because of a bad call from a ref. Archaeologists have long puzzled over a line in the epitaph of Diodorus the gladiator's gravestone. It reads, "After breaking my opponent Demetrius I did not kill him immediately. Fate and the cunning treachery of the summa rudis killed me." The summa rudis was a referee who oversaw gladiator games. Unlike...

Prehistoric stone circle discovered in Yorkshire

Prehistoric stone circle discovered in Yorkshire Jun 12th, 2011 at 9:00AM: A stone circle that was once part of a prehistoric cairn has been discovered by a group of amateur archaeologists on Ilkley Moor, Yorkshire, England. A cairn is a large pile of stones that marked the grave of an important individual in prehistoric times. These stones were often taken away by later farmers for building walls or cottages, and sometimes all that's left is a circle of stones from...

Exploring the tunnels under the Western Front

Exploring the tunnels under the Western Front Jun 10th, 2011 at 11:00AM: The common image of the Western Front in World War One is of muddy trenches and artillery barrages. That was certainly the experience of most soldiers. But while huge armies slugged it out in the mud and ruin of France and Belgium, another war was going on underground. Sappers from both sides dug tunnels under enemy trenches, packed them with explosives, and blew them up. The explosions were...

Mystery mound in England turns out to be ancient monument

Mystery mound in England turns out to be ancient monument Jun 2nd, 2011 at 9:00AM: England's prehistoric landscape has a new addition. Marlborough Mound in Wiltshire has long been a mystery. The flat-topped cone of earth looks like a smaller version of Silbury Hill, pictured here. The bigger mound was finished around 2300 BC at a time when Neolithic farmers were erecting stone circles such as Stonehenge and Avebury. Now archaeologists have taken samples from Marlborough...

Skeletons at royal castle in Scotland killed in battle, experts say

Skeletons at royal castle in Scotland killed in battle, experts say May 29th, 2011 at 10:00AM: Stirling Castle in Scotland was the scene of several brutal sieges and battles in its violent history. Now a new exhibition looks at the castle's past and the grim discovery of several skeletons in the Royal Chapel showing signs of violent death. One man had 44 skull fractures from repeated blows with a blunt object, and up to 60 more over the rest of his body. The Middle Ages were a pitiless...

Robot discovers secret writing in Great Pyramid

Robot discovers secret writing in Great Pyramid May 28th, 2011 at 3:00PM: The Great Pyramid of Cheops at Giza has always sparked the imagination. Among its many mysteries are four tiny passages running through the interior. The smallest are only eight inches square, far too small for a person to crawl through, so what were they for? As you can see from the cutaway above, two of the tunnels angle up from the King's Chamber to exit the pyramid. Some researchers...

Blackbeard's pirate ship gives up its anchor

Blackbeard's pirate ship gives up its anchor May 28th, 2011 at 12:00PM: A pirate ship owned by the notorious Blackbeard is being investigated by archaeologists, who have just retrieved one of its anchors. The Queen Anne's Revenge, was grounded in 1718 while trying to enter Beaufort Inlet, North Carolina. Blackbeard had just come from blockading Charleston until he received a ransom. Currently the wreck lies in only 20 feet of water, as easily accessible to...

London's seamy side revealed in new exhibition

London's seamy side revealed in new exhibition May 26th, 2011 at 4:00PM: London has always had an underworld, a dangerous side. Just go out late on a Saturday night and you're sure to see a fight. For many, the hint of danger is one of the city's attractions, at least if you don't have to deal with it full time. Back in the 18th and 19th century, there was nothing attractive about the St. Giles Rookery. It got its name because tiny apartments were stacked atop one...

Lost pyramids found in Egypt

Lost pyramids found in Egypt May 25th, 2011 at 8:30AM: You'd think it would be pretty hard to lose a pyramid, yet in fact plenty have gone missing in Egypt over the years. Not all of them are giant edifices like the Great Pyramid at Giza. Most are only a dozen or so meters high and were meant to house the body of a Queen. In 2008 the pyramid of Sesheshet was discovered in the desert near Saqqara, and now a survey using infrared satellite imagery has...

Archaeologists in Syria discover Byzantine mosaic

Archaeologists in Syria discover Byzantine mosaic May 15th, 2011 at 3:00PM: Just when you thought all news coming out of Syria was bad, an archaeology team has discovered a Byzantine mosaic in a medieval church. The mosaic was discovered last week at the Deir Sounbol Church on al-Zawieh Mountain. Syrian investigators say the mosaic measures 4x5 meters (13x16 ft.). While portions are damaged or missing, floral and geometric shapes are clearly visible and there are...

Archaeologists to raise 17th century shipwreck

Archaeologists to raise 17th century shipwreck May 14th, 2011 at 1:00PM: The shipwreck of a 17th century merchant vessel off the coast of England is going to be raised from the sea, the BBC reports. An armed merchant vessel that plied the high seas sank in the Swash Channel off the coast of Dorset more than 300 years ago. Underwater archaeology teams have been studying the wreck and have found cannon, pottery, and an intriguing face of a man carved into the...

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