As the British Museum opens its Vikings exhibition to the public, Scandinavian skeletons are causing a stir again. The bony discovery of 50 young male skeletons, decapitated and lumped in an old quarry pit before being found by diggers on an Olympic relief road in Weymouth five years ago, became an even more gripping story following scientific examinations revealing that this mass grave carried executed Vikings.
Some of the Lewis Chessmen may not have been chessmen at all according to new research. The 12th and 13th century gaming pieces which were discovered in Uig on the Isle of Lewis in 1831 are considered to be Scotland’s most renowned archaeological find. An article in the journal Medieval Archaeology by David Caldwell, Mark Hall and Caroline Wilkinson suggests that many of the 93 ivory pieces may have been used in a game called hnefatafl – an ancient Viking board game that pre-dates…
A small Iron Age village of at least seven houses has been uncovered at a in-filled lake in southwest Scotland. One of the buildings, a timber roundhouse, had been constructed around a massive stone hearth complex. Its beams radiate out from the hearth. “There are some excellent examples of ‘lake villages’ in England but this is the first time archaeologists have found a ‘loch village’ in Scotland,” commented Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop.
Jarlshof - near Sumburgh, Shetland Islands, Great Britain; the Viking settlement of the Jarlshof site was hidden until a storm in the late 1800s exposed some of the remains from late Iron Age buildings (before 800 AD); built in a circular fashion around a central hub with small rooms and storage areas leading off of it.
Fantastic article in Archaeology Magazine this month about the use of 3-D technology to map the wreck of the Titanic and the debris field surrounding the site in order to impose an archaeological grid for further study.
The Irish National Museum of Archaeology, Dublin. A wonderful museum. This gold Lunula, a neck ornament, has been cold hammered (using stone hammers) from a single nugget of Irish gold, to an incredible thinness.
Ancient single-seat rocket-ship hidden away in the Istanbul Archaeology Museum in Turkey for a quarter of a century. Zecharia Sitchin describes this object as, "a sculpted scale model of what, to modern eyes, looks like a cone-nosed rocket-ship… Powered by a cluster of four exhaust engines in the back surrounding a larger exhaust engine, the rocket-ship has room for a sole pilot-actually shown and included in the sculpture."