The Oxyrhynchus Project: Desktop Papyrology

ancientlives

el-Bahnasa is a sand-blasted village about 100 miles south of Cairo. Once known as Oxyrhynchus (“City of the Sharp-Nose Fish”), it prospered under the Greeks, and became largely Christian under the Romans and Byzantines. It had a gradual decline until about the 7th century, when Arab invasions finished it off. Its structures–including a number of churches and monasteries–were [Read More...]

British Veterans Discover Remains of Ancient Soldier

Remains of Anglo Saxon warrior

Operation Nightingale is an innovative program designed to help soldiers learn new skills while recovering from injuries. The soldiers, who had been wounded in Afghanistan, were performing a routine excavation to learn the techniques of archaeology. Instead, they turned up something more significant and, for them, meaningful: a warrior like themselves, buried 1400 years ago. Mike [Read More...]

Seal Depicting Samson Discovered (Or Maybe Not)

samsonseal

It’s hard to know what to make of this story at this point, so I’m just going to put it out there as reported. Excavations at Tel Beit Shmesh have turned up an interesting stone seal at a level dating to about the 11th century BC. This is the seal: It’s about 1.5 cm and [Read More...]

Medieval Bras Discovered

medievallingerie

Someone’s getting a whole thesis out of this one. Textiles is a difficult area of archaeology, because cloth can be hard to preserve. Our records of what women wore under their clothes is hardly complete, and most assumed that upper class women wore a combination of bodice and chemis on the top, and both genders [Read More...]

Are These the Faces of the Children of Antony and Cleopatra?

alexcleo

I’m not wholly convinced, but Giuseppina Capriotti, an Egyptologist at Italy’s National Research Council, thinks she can make the case based on style, dating, and iconography. Cleopatra’s twin babies now have a face. An Italian Egyptologist has rediscovered a sculpture of Alexander Helios and Cleopatra Selene, the offspring of Mark Antony and Cleopatra VII, at the Egyptian [Read More...]

Vampire Grave Unearthed!

364510

Well, let’s take a look at this week’s archaeological blotter and see if anyone has discovered some nice old pottery or … … holy cow …. Vampire Grave Discovered in Bulgaria Bulgarian archaeologists have found a 700 year old grave of a man buried with an “iron stick” in his chest. The Sofia News Agency reports [Read More...]

The Great Crusade

June 6, 1944. D-Day. 68 years ago. My dad was a B-26 mechanic who also flew on 14 missions as a waist gunner in the European theater. I asked him about D-day, and he said he remembers the sky being black with airplanes. He’s never said much else. Here’s what Ike had to say to these men [Read More...]

First Ancient Proof of Bethlehem’s Existence Discovered UPDATED

bethbulla

This is huge news, which is made even more wonderful since it comes from such a tiny object. In an excavation in the City of David (the most historically important area of Jerusalem), a tiny bulla was found imprinted with the words “Bat Lechem,” the ancient name for Bethlehem. (A bulla is a seal, usually made [Read More...]


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