Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Stater of Tarsus

Tarsus was an ancient city located on the southern Mediterranean shore of Asia Minor in what is now modern Turkey. It was already ancient when the Persians added it to their empire, with habitation going back to the Stone Age. It sat at the intersection of important trade routes, and saw many conquerors come and go. The Hittites, the Assyrians, the Persians, Alexander the Great, the Romans, the Byzantines, the Arabs, the Crusaders and the Ottomans (among others) all held sway over the port city.

Head of a nymph, a common motif on the coinage of Greek city-states around the Mediterranean
The city is perhaps best known in the West for its ties to two historical stories: it was where the Roman general Marc Antony first met Cleopatra, and as the birthplace of Paul the Apostle.
Egypt Proof Gold 50 Pound Cleopatra

Cleopatra's Gate, an ancient Roman gate that is still standing in Tarsus

Skeletons And Ancient Gold Coins Found at Pompeii Excavation

In June 2016 archeologists uncovered four skeletons and gold artifacts inside the site of a former shop located near Pompeii’s Herculaneum gate, on the outskirts of the city.

Three gold coins and a gold-leaf pendant were found among the remains in the Pompeii shop. The gold coins have been dated to between 74 and 78 A.D. The shop may have been used to create bronze items. In another area, they uncovered a limestone tomb, dating to the fourth century B.C., which contained a body of a man.

Archaeologists weren’t the first to enter the store’s ancient walls. Looters previously tunneled into the store and in their search for treasure pushed the victims’ remains against a wall.
The four skeletons, believed to have belonged to young people, were found in the back of the shop.

The victims, including an adolescent girl, are thought to have sought refuge inside the store before they were overtaken by the volcano.
Excavations at the shop, as well as a second in the area, started in May.

A third of the ancient city remains buried beneath volcanic debris.

See ----->http://psjfactoids.blogspot.ca/2016/05/treasures-of-pompeii.html
See ----->http://psjfactoids.blogspot.ca/2016/02/the-curse-of-pompeii.html
See ----->http://psjfactoids.blogspot.ca/2016/02/pompeii-victims-bodies-revealed-in-scans.html

Monday, 30 January 2017

More than 80 shackled skeletons found in ancient mass grave

In 2016 archaeologists found a mass grave near Athens, Greece, containing more than 80 skeletons. The wrists of the skeletons were all bound in iron shackles.

Archaeologists believe they were part of a mass execution.
The skeletons were found in the Falyron Delta necropolis, between Athens and the port of Piraeus. It’s believed that the victims may have been part of a failed coup plot, supporters of Cylon, who attempted to take over Athens. Cylon was an Athenian noble who attempted to seize power in the city in 632 BCE, where his father-in-law, Theagenes, was tyrant.

The coup was opposed, and Cylon and his supporters took refuge in Athena's temple on the Acropolis. Cylon and his brother escaped, but his followers were cornered by Athens' nine archons and killed.

Saturday, 28 January 2017

Ancient Grave in Heuneburg brimming with Treasure

An Iron Age tomb brimming with treasures fashioned out of gold, bronze and amber was recently uncovered after lying undisturbed by the Danube River for nearly 2,600 years.
The hoard adorned and surrounded the skeleton of a woman who likely died between the age of 30 and 40. She was an elite member of a Celtic society that buried her in ancient southern Germany at a hill fort called Heuneburg in 583 B.C. Multiple graves around the woman's burial chamber had been looted over the millenia, with some looters digging tunnels from tomb to tomb. The newfound grave was untouched. It is one of the very few richly furnished graves from the first half of the sixth century in Heuneburg.
Heuneburg is a prehistoric hill fort near the Danube River. The Celtic city-state was likely founded in the sixth century B.C.

Friday, 27 January 2017

The Roman shoe hoard of Vindolanda

1,800 years ago the Roman army built one of its smallest but most heavily defended forts at the site of Vindolanda, which is now a part of the Frontiers of The Roman Empire World Heritage Site. The small garrison of a few hundred soldiers and their families took shelter behind a series of large ditches and ramparts, while outside the walls a war was raging between the northern British Tribes and Roman forces.
Once the war was over (c AD 212) the troops and their dependants pulled out of the fort, and anything that they could not carry with them on the march was tossed into the defensive ditches. In 2016, the Vindolanda archaeologists excavated the ditch and discovered an incredible time capsule of life and conflict, and amongst the debris were dog and cat skeletons, pottery, leather and 421 Roman shoes.
The shoe hoard gives an indication of fashion and affluence of the occupants in AD 212 with some very stylish and well-made shoes, both adults and children’s. Vindolanda’s Designated collection has a direct connection with the former inhabitants. They are the best preserved Roman shoes ever found.

Thursday, 26 January 2017

Scylla and Charybdis

Being between Scylla and Charybdis is an idiom deriving from Greek mythology, meaning "having to choose between two evils". "Between a rock and a hard place" express similar. Scylla and Charybdis were mythical sea monsters on opposite sides of the Strait of Messina between Sicily and the mainland. Scylla was described as a six-headed sea monster on the Italian side of the strait and Charybdis was a whirlpool off the coast of Sicily.

Avoiding Charybdis meant passing too close to Scylla and vice versa. According to Homer, Odysseus was forced to choose which monster to confront; he opted to pass by Scylla and lose only a few sailors, rather than risk the loss of his entire ship in the whirlpool.

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Tyrant of ancient Rome Commodus

Commodus as Hercules
Commodus (31 August 161 – 31 December 192), born Lucius Aurelius Commodus was Roman Emperor from AD 180 to 192. He also ruled as co-emperor with his father Marcus Aurelius from 177 until his father's death in 180.

Holding a huge club to beat his enemies with, the Roman emperor Commodus wears a lion skin in a marble portrait bust made in the second century AD, which is one of the treasures of Rome’s Capitoline Museum. The portrait literally equates the strength of Hercules with the power of the emperor. When the son of the respected Marcus Aurelius took control of the Roman empire in AD161 and embarked on a career of bizarre, erratic behavior and monstrous cruelty. As well as executing his enemies and perceived enemies, he liked to fight in the arena, killing gladiators with his own hands in a spectacle that Romans found shameful.
In the view of Dio Cassius, a contemporary observer of the period, his accession marked the descent "from a kingdom of gold to one of iron and rust" – a famous comment which has led some historians to take Commodus' reign as the beginning of the decline of the Roman Empire.

He would go on to claim to be the son of Jupiter, the representative of the supreme god of the Roman pantheon. He began to view himself in megalomaniacal proportions.
In November 192, Commodus held Plebeian Games, in which he shot hundreds of animals with arrows and javelins every morning, and fought as a gladiator every afternoon, winning all of his bouts easily as his opponents always submitted. For each appearance in the arena, he charged the city of Rome a million sesterces, a vast sum that strained the Roman economy. He announced his intention to inaugurate the year 193 as both consul and gladiator.

His foes had had enough. They poisoned his food but he vomited up the poison; so the conspirators sent his wrestling partner Narcissus to strangle him in his bath in 192. Upon his death, the Senate declared him a public enemy. (a de facto damnatio memoriae)

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

NYINC Auction of World & Ancient Coins

Ancient coins saw great results. An Akragas Tetradrachm featuring two massive sea eagles and the fearsome Scylla brought $22,325. A scarce Naxos Hemidrachm realized $3,995.
A rare Bar Kochba Revolt “Large Bronze” nearly quadrupled estimate by realizing nearly $20,000. A Titus as Caesar “Judaea Capta” AE Sestertius, brought $18,800
A Belgian 100 Franc from 1853 brought $21,737, more than doubling the high estimate. A Half Pound of Elizabeth I brought $11,750.
See ----->http://psjfactoids.blogspot.ca/2017/01/nyinc-ancient-and-world-coins-and-paper_9.html

Monday, 23 January 2017

Artifacts for Grand Egyptian Museum's Opening

A team of experts shipped a 4-ton, 3,500-year-old statue of King Amenhotep seated next to the falcon-headed Egyptian god Ra. The pink granite piece, which had lain hidden in the sands of southern Egypt until it was rediscovered in 2009, was packed in a purpose-built box and carried in a heavy truck on special air bags over 400 miles.

The statue will welcome visitors to the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) when it opens in 2018. Some 50,000 pieces will be on display — 30,000 of which have never before been seen by the public.