Roof of Mamertine prison church collapses

The roof of the church of San Giuseppe dei Falegnami (Saint Joseph of the Carpenters) collapsed on Thursday afternoon, reducing to rubble one of the most beautiful original parts of the church: the wooden coffered ceiling built in the 1600s. It was the central vault which weakened and took the roof down. San Giuseppe was …

Rare clan seal found in Scottish castle dig

An excavation at the ruins of Dunyvaig Castle on Islay, in Argyll, Scotland, has unearthed a rare 17th century artifact: the seal of Sir John Campbell of Cawdor. The lead seal bears the Cawdor coat of arms with a stag head and a galley on the obverse, and is inscribed “IOANNIS CAMPBELL DE CALDER.” On …

Boston Tea Party cartoon sells for $37,500

The rare cartoon of the Boston Tea Party printed by engraver and soon-to-be convicted counterfeiter Henry Dawkins sold at auction on Saturday for $37,500. One of only seven known copies, “Liberty Triumphant or the Downfall of Oppression” was published in the immediate wake of the act of rebellion which saw members of the secret organization …

Perfectly preserved Ice Age foal found in Siberia

The remains of an eerily intact foal has been discovered in the melting permafrost of Siberia. Preserved in the ice for tens of thousands of years, the baby horse was found by paleontologists from Yakutian North-Eastern Federal University in the Batagaika crater in Yakutia, Russia. Scientists identified the foal as a Lena Horse, a species …

Mummification 1,500 years older than previously thought

Egypt’s hot, dry desert climate preserved dead bodies long before the advent of artificial mummification. It was long believed that predynastic mummies curled in their characteristic fetal position, were all the product of natural causes, desiccated by the hot sands in which they were buried. A new study has found that a predynastic mummy of …

Fisherman finds Pictish symbol stone in river

A rare stone carved with Pictish symbols has been discovered in the River Don in Dyce, Aberdeen, thanks to an extended period of unseasonable heat and a keen-eyed local fisherman. The hot, dry weather this summer dropped the water level of the Don to the lowest it has been in decades, exposing the stone on …

14th c. hoard found in clay pot in Bulgaria

An excavation of the Kaliakra Fortress on the coast of the Black Sea in northern Bulgaria has unearthed a small clay pot full of coins, jewelry and other valuables hidden under a floor in the Middle Ages. A team of archaeologists headed by Bonnie Petrunova, director of the National History Museum (NHM) in Sofia, discovered …