Sunday, 30 December 2018

Two Roman statues unearthed near Beit She’an

Two Roman statues were discovered after a Beit She’an resident took a stroll north of the ancient tell. A woman noticed the top of a head of one of the statues while walking around the ancient Biblical site, known in Roman times as Scythopolis. The resident and her husband alerted the authorities, which quickly arrived at the site and uncovered the statues.
Such artifacts are usually placed near or inside burial caves, and are intended to be a likeness of the deceased. They date to the late Roman-early Byzantine period (third to fourth centuries CE).

Similar sculptures have been found in the past near the region of Beit She’an, which sits at the junction of the Jordan River Valley and Jezreel Valley. Heavy winter rains bring such finds to the surface.

Saturday, 29 December 2018

The Likho

Likho is an embodiment of evil fate and misfortune in Slavic mythology. A creature with one eye, it is often depicted as an old, skinny woman in black or as an evil male goblin. In ancient times, the likho was believed to be a servant of Death. During pre-Christian times villages would conduct a ritual during times of epidemic and burn an effigy of Likho.

Likho was supposed to come and eat a person. This was used to scare small children. Likho is a noun meaning bad luck in modern Russian.

Thursday, 27 December 2018

Expensive US pennies

The 1914-S Lincoln cent. Over 4 million minted. What makes this coin extremely valuable is condition. $105,800 in 2016.

1944-D Lincoln Penny on a Zinc-Coated Steel Planchet. Over 430 million were struck. $115,000 in 2006.
1909-S VDB Lincoln Penny. $117,500 in 2014.

1872 Indian Head Penny. $126,500 in August 2007.
1877 Indian Head Penny. $149,500 in August 2007.

1914-D Lincoln Penny. $152,750 in 2017. An uncirculated example in its original mint state makes this coin extremely rare.
1864 Indian Head Penny–"L" on Ribbon. $161,000 in 2011.

1943 Lincoln Cent Struck on Bronze Alloy. $164,500 in 2013.
1856 Flying Eagle Cent. $172,500 in 2004

1909 VDB Matte Proof Lincoln Penny. $258,500 in 2014
1943-S Lincoln Cent Struck on Bronze. $282,000 in 2016.

1944-S Lincoln Steel Penny. $373,750 in 2008.
1943-D Lincoln Bronze Cent. $1,700,000 in September 2010. The only known example of a 1943 Lincoln penny struck at the Denver mint on the bronze alloy. All pennies produced in 1943 were to be struck on zinc-plated steel planchets instead of the regular copper alloy.

Some bronze cents from 1942 slipped into the production line. The single example from the Denver mint is unique and very likely the most expensive penny on earth.

Wednesday, 26 December 2018

Tree of life is dying: Africa's ancient baobab

Africa's ancient trees of life are being killed by climate change. Researches found that nine of the oldest 13 baobab trees and five of the six biggest ones have partially or completely died in the past 12 years. The baobab tree is revered in Africa. Medicinal compounds are extracted from its leaves, while the fruit -rich in vitamin C -- is used for nourishment and the seeds yield oil.

Three trees that were older than 2,000 years have all died in the past decade.

Saturday, 15 December 2018

Egypt unveils spectacular tomb of ancient high priest

Archaeologists have discovered the tomb of a priest dating back more than 4,400 years in the pyramid complex of Saqqara south of Cairo. The tomb belongs to 'Wahtye' a high priest who served during the fifth dynasty reign of King Neferirkare. His tomb is decorated with scenes showing the royal priest alongside other members of his family.
Pharaoh Neferefre

Wednesday, 12 December 2018

Cambodia home to Asia’s ancient ‘Land of Gold’?

Over two decades ago, in the remote reaches of Cambodia's Baset district, a group of villagers discovered a slab covered in ancient carvings, then three more. Soon they found themselves excavating the ruins of an ancient temple. What they found are clues to the location of the fabled ‘Land of Gold’, the ancient realm of Suvarnabhumi.
One inscription praised King Isanavarman I of the Chenla Empire, dated to the year 633. “The great King Isanavarman is full of glory and bravery. He is the King of Kings, who rules over Suvarnabhumi until the sea, which is the border, while the kings in the neighbouring states honour his order to their heads.”  Many have puzzled over the whereabouts of Suvarnabhumi, with references dating back to ancient Buddhist accounts.
Most of the inscriptions, like many others found in Southeast Asia, praises the king for his godlike power and dominion over the land, but the mention of Suvarnabhumi directly is a surprise to researchers.

The Minister of Culture and Fine Arts has requested to move the tablets to the National Museum in Phnom Penh. Locals objected due to 'ill omens.' Monks have been retained to arrange the required rituals and “avoid any curse”.

Tuesday, 11 December 2018

'Mudlark' almost threw Roman treasure back into the Thames

'Mudlark' Alan Suttie almost threw a rare Roman lamp he found while walking on the Thames foreshore on his lunch break back into the river because he thought it was a fake. Now the artifact is going on display at the Museum of London along with other objects found by amateur treasure hunters.

The oil lamp, which was made in north Africa in the 4th to 5th century AD, dates from the end of Roman rule in Britain and has been designated an item of national importance.

The British Museum revealed the number of treasure discoveries made by the public has hit a record level for the second year running.

Saturday, 8 December 2018

Vault 'B' of the Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple

All eyes are on the sealed 'vault B' of the Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple, one of the richest shrines in the world, with a Supreme Court-appointed amicus curie to hasten the process of opening it. The 16th century temple shot to fame six years ago when one of its six vaults ('A') was found to contain ancient valuables estimated at Rs 1 lakh crore. ($20 billion)
The royal family and a section of devotees have opposed the opening of the sealed chamber on the grounds that such an action would “violate the sanctity of the temple”. They had earlier conducted an astrological ritual – devaprasnam – to perceive the mood of the deity, and informed the court that opening the vault amounted to violating the temple tradition in a manner that would invite divine wrath.

Vault 'A' contained antique gold coins that alone weighed over 600 kg. Of the two lakh items documented by government officials, 600 were found embedded with gems.
See ----->The Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple

Wednesday, 5 December 2018

Ancient artifacts at Christie's

27 antiquities were sold on 18 April 2018 in New York.

Among the pieces is a rare statue of Sekhim-Ankh-Ptah who lived between 2389 and 2255 BC. A minister in the Pharaonic era, he was considered the supervisor of most of the property business at the time. The relic was expected to fetch between $1 million and $1.5 million.
Over-sized Roman Marble head of a God. 2ND CENTURY A.D. USD $396,000 Egyptian ganodioite saced bull. LATE PERIOD, 664-332 B.C.Egyptian monumental head of NECTANEBO II, 360-343 B.C. USD 732,000

Tuesday, 4 December 2018

The Manticore

The manticore is a Persian legendary creature similar to the Egyptian sphinx. It has the head of a human, body of a lion and a tail of venomous spines similar to porcupine quills, while other depictions have it with the tail of a scorpion.

The manticore or mantyger first appeared in English heraldry in c.1470, as a badge of William Hastings, 1st Baron Hastings.

Ark of the Covenant in Ethiopia?

The Bible describes how Israelites built a gold-plated chest to house the stone tablets on which the Ten Commandments were written and Aaron's rod. It is described as large, made of gold-plated wood and topped with two large, golden angels. The Ark makes a sudden disappearance from history after the Babylonian conquest in around 586 BC.
Researchers believe "St. Mary’s of Zion church in Axum, Ethiopia, is the resting place either of an incredible replica of the biblical Ark of the Covenant, or, of the actual Ark of the Covenant itself."

Monday, 3 December 2018

Trove of 11th century gold coins discovered in ancient Caesarea

Six rare Byzantine gold coins and 18 Fatimid-era coins testify to a wealthy family fleeing conquest on the eve of the bloody 1101 Crusade, say archaeologists. 24 gold coins and a gold earring was recently discovered in a well-hidden bronze pot during ongoing excavation in the ancient harbor of Caesarea. The dinars were all 24k gold, whereas the Byzantine coins were 22k.

The treasure was likely hidden during flight from the bloody Crusader battle of 1101 at the seaside stronghold, in which the ruling Fatimid empire was routed and its people massacred or taken as slaves.

Baldwin I of Jerusalem was behind the Crusader conquest of Caesarea in 1101. After his coronation in Jerusalem on December 25, 1100, he captured a series of port cities from the Egyptian-based Fatimid empire, from Acre to Sidon.
Five of the six rare 'Christian' coins as belong to the reign of the Byzantine Emperor Michael VII Doukas (1071–1079).

See ----->Roman artifacts recovered from shipwreck at the ancient port of Caesarea