Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Berserkers

Berserkers were Norse warriors who are reported in the Old Norse literature to have fought in a nearly uncontrollable, trance-like fury, a characteristic which later gave rise to the English word berserk.

They were said to wear the pelt of a wolf or bear when they entered battle. The name berserker derives from the Old Norse berserkr. This expression likely arose from their habit of wearing a kind of shirt or coat (serkr) made from the pelt of a bear (ber-) during battle. The bear was one of the animals representing Odin, and by wearing such a pelt the warriors sought to gain the strength of a bear and the favor of Odin. Berserkers are sometimes described as Odin's special warriors.
Berserkers appear prominently in sagas and poems, many of which describe them as ravenous men who loot, plunder, and kill indiscriminately. Later, Christian interpreters referred to the berserkers as a "heathen devils".

The berserker were said to be able to do things that normal humans could not. According to ancient legend, the berserkers were indestructible, and no weapon could break them from their trance. They were described as being immune to fire and to the strike of a sword, continuing on their rampage despite injury.
The fury of the berserkers would start with chills and teeth chattering and give way to a purpling of the face, as they literally became ‘hot-headed’, and culminating in a great, uncontrollable rage accompanied by grunts and howls.

Some claim that berserker behavior can be explained by the ingestion of the plant known as bog myrtle, one of the main ingredients in Nordic grog. Myrica gale is a species of flowering plant in the genus Myrica, native to northern and western Europe. It is a deciduous shrub.

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Minoan Gold


Minoan, about 1850-1550 BC. 'Master (or Mistress) of the Animals'
The Minoan civilization was a Bronze Age society that arose on the island of Crete and flourished from about the 27th century BC to the 15th century BC. The term "Minoan" was coined after the mythic King Minos. Minos was associated in Greek myth with the labyrinth, which identified with the site at Knossos.

According to Greek mythology, King Minos of Crete had the craftsman Daedalus construct the Labyrinth in order to conceal the Minotaur. The Minotaur was a half bull and half man creature that yearly ate the Athernian tribute of fourteen young men and women.
Salzburg Multiple lane labyrinth with Theseus and the Minotauros in the center.

The Bronze Age began in Crete as locals on the island developed centers of commerce. This enabled the upper classes to expand their influence. Eventually the ground would be laid for a monarchist power structure - a precondition for the creation of great empires.

Around 1450 BCE, Minoan culture experienced a turning point due to a natural catastrophe, possibly the eruption of Thera. (Santorin) The palace in Knossos seems to have remained largely intact. The Minoan palace sites were occupied by the Myceneans around 1420 BC.

By 1200 BC the Minoans had faded into history.


Signet ring dates to around 1500 BCE



See ----->http://psjfactoids.blogspot.ca/2016/02/santorini-thera.html

Monday, 27 November 2017

Jonathan, St. Helena's famous ancient tortoise


In his time on St Helena he has seen 28 British governors come and go.
Jonathan the giant tortoise is perhaps the world's oldest land animal, living in pampered luxury on the remote British island of St. Helena. Aged at least 185 -- though no one knows for certain -- Jonathan should prepare himself for an influx of visitors now that an airport has opened on the small island in the middle of the South Atlantic Ocean. The island's most famous resident, Jonathan slowly roams the lush gardens of the governor's house, eating carrots, lettuce, cucumber, apples and pears prepared in the governor's kitchen.
He appears on the island's five-pence coin, on immigration stamps, and in old black-and-white photographs alongside Boer War prisoners in the early 20th century. Jonathan originates from the Seychelles but his arrival on St. Helena remains a mystery and the exact year is disputed. Some unconfirmed reports suggest 1882 -- a few decades after Napoleon died in exile on the island on 1821.

He is now blind, has no sense of smell and is already far beyond his life expectancy of 150 years -- but otherwise he is in good health with good hearing.

St. Helena, located 1,200 miles (1,900 kilometers) from the African mainland, is one of the most remote places on Earth.

Friday, 24 November 2017

Ancient Christian mosaic uncovered in the ruins of a monastery in Israel


The tessellated tile work features a four line inscription in Greek, commemorating the builder of the monastery in which it was found. It also includes the date of its construction according to the Georgian calendar, the first evidence of its use in Israel, which corresponds with 539 AD.
An immaculately preserved mosaic created by Christians living in Israel 1,500 years ago has been uncovered by archaeologists.

Inscription reads: 'By the grace of God (or Jesus), this work was done from the foundation under Procopius, our most saintly and most holy bishop, in the month Dios of the 3rd indiction, year 292.
The find was made in the coastal city of Ashdod.

Ashdod was one of the most important cities on the coast of Israel in the Byzantine period.

Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Tomb with ancient chariots found in central China

Archaeologists in China have uncovered a tomb with 2400-year-old chariots and horses.

The burial pit was uncovered in central China, in the city of Xinzheng, near Zhengzhou in Henan province.
Scientists believe the tomb may have belonged to a noble family of the Zheng state (806–375 BC), which was a vassal kingdom that governed during the Zhou dynasty (1100–221 BC).

Archaeologists found dozens of chariots and the skeletons of around 100 horses.

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

3 Roman shipwrecks found in Egypt

Egypt announced Tuesday that archaeologists have uncovered three Roman shipwrecks off the country's north coast. The discoveries were made off the coast of Alexandria, in Abu Qir Bay.

Three gold coins that date to the time of Augustus were found.
Work in Alexandria’s harbor began in September, with researchers diving down to the sunken city of Heracleion.

Thonis-Heracleion was founded around the 8th century BC, underwent a series of natural catastrophes, and eventually sunk entirely into the depths in the 8th century CE.
See ----->http://psjfactoids.blogspot.ca/2015/10/submerged-ancient-egyptian-treasures-go.html

Friday, 17 November 2017

Ancient Scythian Gold sparks spat between Russia, Netherlands

Moscow has accused the Netherlands of seizing gold artifacts claimed by the Kremlin following Russia's annexation of Crimea in 2014.

A collection of gold that dates back to the Scythian era in the fourth century B.C. was on display in Amsterdam when Moscow invaded Crimea and annexed it from Ukraine almost three years ago.
A Dutch court ruled last year that Ukraine was the rightful owner of the ancient treasure and it should not be returned to the territory while it is occupied by Russia. Moscow claims that as Crimea is part of Russia, the artifacts should be returned.
See ----->http://psjfactoids.blogspot.ca/2017/07/scythians-warriors-of-ancient-siberia.html
See ----->http://psjfactoids.blogspot.ca/2017/04/golden-pectoral-from-tolstaya-mogila.html
See ----->http://psjfactoids.blogspot.ca/2016/02/treasure-of-siberias-valley-of-kings.html

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Ancient Skull from China raises Questions

Most scientists believe all modern humans are descended from African ancestors. But a new analysis of an ancient Chinese skull found too many similarities to the earliest human fossils found in Africa to be a coincidence. The 260,000 year old skull was discovered nearly 40 years ago in China’s Shaanxi Province. It belonged to a member of Homo erectus.

Its possible we need to reassess how our ancestors migrated, interacted and subsequently evolved.
The similarities show that early modern humans may not have been genetically isolated from other parts of the world. Characteristics of modern Homo sapiens may have actually developed in east Asia, and were later carried to Africa.