By ROB WAUGH
A pot of gold from the Crusades worth up to $500,000 has been found buried in an ancient Roman fortress in Israel.
The coins were buried by Christian soldiers of the order of the Knights Hospitalier as the Crusaders faced an unstoppable attack by a huge Muslim army.
The knights were annihilated in April 1265.
The coins - worth a fortune even in 1265 when they were thought to have been buried - were deliberately hidden inside a broken jug to prevent them being discovered.
The fortress was destroyed in April 1265 by forces of Mamluks who overwhelmed the Crusaders - and the treasure only survived due to the quick thinking of one of the defenders.
'It was in a small juglet, and it was partly broken,' Oren Tal of the University of Tel Aviv told Fox News.
By EMILY MORROW
Divers with the St. Augustine Lighthouse Archaeological Maritime Program exploring an offshore shipwreck Thursday morning found a musket, a sword and the neck of a wine bottle.
The three artifacts, raised from about 30 feet underwater, were stuck together and covered with a buildup of sand, shell particles and coral after years of corrosion under water.
They were found at the Storm Wreck shipwreck, a site dating to the late 1700s that was discovered in 2009 near the St. Augustine Lighthouse. Excavation at the site began in the summer of 2010, when archeologists found a range of artifacts including iron and copper cauldrons, a flintlock pistol, six cannons and the intact ship’s bell.
Two additional cannons were found a year later. One was a carronade, a type of cannon invented during the American Revolution. It was dated to 1780 and is believed to be the second oldest carronade to have survived in the world today.
Thursday’s finds were on display for guests to see before being taken for conservation, said Jacqueline Linger, spokeswoman for the Lighthouse Archaeological Maritime Program.
Linger said the musket will require special care and will remain submerged in salt water, though she could not answer questions about the conservation process.
She was not sure when the musket would be on display again.
Courtesy St. Augustine Record
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A stone found in Guatemala carved by the Mayas some 1,300 years ago states that the ancient civilization’s 13th “baktun” period - each of which lasts some 400 years - will end on Dec. 21, the second historical reference found regarding the ancient civilization’s pending calendar change.
The find was announced this past week by Guatemalan and U.S. archaeologists who explained that they uncovered the stone last April at a dig being worked by students from Guatemala’s Universidad Del Valle, Tulane and the University of Texas.
U.S. archaeologist David Stuart, one of the experts who announced the find, said that the carved steps on which the stone was found contains the longest Mayan text discovered to date in Guatemala.
This is the second reference ever found regarding the change in the Maya calendar. The other was uncovered at a site called Tortuguero in Mexico’s Tabasco state, he said.
Tegucigalpa, Jul 3 (Prensa Latina) Honduras is now one of the countries most affected by the looting of religious-artistic heritage, according to a Red List prepared by the International Police (Interpol).
Foreign dealers removed from Honduras steadily, and in total impunity, pieces of archaeological and historical value, which then appear in countries like Guatemala, Mexico and the United States, Interpol reported.
Interpol Red List, written in four languages, includes images of more than one hundred objects stolen in Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama.
The list includes 110 pieces of pre-Columbian times, made of gold, jade, bone, shells, pottery and stone as well as others closer in time such as paintings, sculptures, documents and objects of silver and gold, especially of a religious nature.
Most of patrimonial works are exhibited in museums and churches and are susceptible to theft or traffic, according to Interpol.
Data from the Office of Ethnic and Cultural Heritage of Honduras confirmed that from 2010 they have received 101 reports of crimes against cultural heritage in this Central American country.
Swedish archaeologists are keen to secure funding to excavate an 800-year-old shipwreck that was discovered off the country’s south coast. The long, narrow vessel, which was found close to Sturkö, is almost completely buried, meaning excavation will be difficult.
“When the divers recovered fragments for dating, they were literally ‘looking’ with their hands,” underwater archaeologist for the Kalmar County Museum, Lars Einarsson, told The Local. “The sediment is so easily disturbed that it makes it almost impossible to see what you’re doing. In some ways, it would be easier if the ship was 10 times deeper.”
“This is an extraordinary medieval wreck. We’ve found that the wood was cut down between 1250 and 1300,” Einarsson said, adding that the 14 by two metre vessel would have been very fast and therefore probably used for looting.
The Kalmar County Council must now decide whether or not to fund the enormous task of excavating the ship, but Einarsson feels the investment could be very worthwhile.
“We really want to determine why the ship was abandoned. We want to know if it was dramatic, or whether it was just left because the ship became too old-fashioned,” he told The Local. “If it was left under dramatic circumstances, who knows what treasures the insides of the ship may hold? The contents would be tremendously helpful in making a connection to the cultural and historical context of the ship.”
Courtesy Ice News
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Pictured: A treasure of 4th century BC Ancient Greek bronze coins was found in a jar in Bulgaria's Sozopol. Photo by frognews
Bulgarian archaeologists have discovered a treasure of bronze coins duringexcavations in the Black Sea resort town of Sozopol.
The treasure was found hidden in a small jar, and consists of 225 Ancient Greek bronze coins, explained the leader of the archaeological team, Prof. Krastina Panayotova, as cited by the Focus news agency.
The coins are well-preserved, and were minted in Sozopol in the 4th century; they were found during excavations of a necropolis in the Budzhaka area close to theBlack Sea town, she explained.
"They were not found in a grave, they are not part of a funeral, this is a treasure, a "classical" case of buried treasure. We have never found a buried treasure before. I have been dealing with Apollonia (Sozopol's Ancient Greek name – editor's note) for 25 years, and have never seen anything like this. It is very rare to come across such a find in a necropolis," Prof. Panayotova explained.
She said she knows of one more case in which a vessel with coins was found in anecropolis in Romania but the treasure found in the necropolis near Sozopol is a precedent for Bulgaria.
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David Anderson, president of Fathom Exploration, poses for a portrait after a news conference at LuLu's at Homeport Marina on Thursday, June 2, 2011, with a bronze bell. The bell was recovered from the wreckage of the previously unknown shipwreck of the British Bark Amstel. Fathom Exploration, working in close partnership with the Alabama Historical Commission, has been trying to preserve artifacts from the wreck site. (Press-Register/Bill Starling)
MOBILE, Alabama — Lawyers for the state of Alabama and a Gulf Shores exploration company are continuing efforts to strike an agreement over how to divvy up historical treasures that might emerge from a shipwreck the company uncovered 8 years ago.
The company, Fathom Exploration, filed a lawsuit in 2004 to stake its claim on the shipwreck near the mouth of Mobile Bay. The legal action has been on hold for years as the company tried to identify the ship, which could affect ownership.
In a report to Chief U.S. District Judge William Steele, both sides stated that they have not reached any accord.
“Although Fathom and the state of Alabama are opponents in an effort to protect their interests, they have worked closely together and in cooperation throughout the period of this action,” the joint report states.
The company said last summer that it believes the shipwreck is the British barque Amstel. Steele endorsed that conclusion in March, turning aside a claim by descendants of the captain of the clipper ship Robert H. Dixey.
Last week’s joint report to the court stated that Fathom Exploration continues to work closely with the Alabama Historical Commission.
“No contract can be finalized until all notices to potential new claimants have been completed and any new claimants have had their claims adjudicated, if necessary,” the report states.
Courtesy Alabama Local
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By Oliver Gee
Lars Einarsson, underwater archaeologist at the Kalmar County museum, was amazed at the results of the exploration of the ship found off the coast of Sturkö, near Karlskrona.
“This is an extraordinary medieval wreck. We’ve found that the wood was cut down between 1250 and 1300,” he told The Local.
The long and narrow ship, measuring 14 by two metres, would have been sleek and fast, and most likely used for attacking and looting.
The ship is 1.8 metres underwater, and is still almost completely buried under the seafloor, which makes for “troublesome diving conditions” according to Einarsson.
“When the divers recovered fragments for dating, they were literally ‘looking’ with their hands,” he said.
“The sediment is so easily disturbed that it makes it almost impossible to see what you’re doing. In some ways, it would be easier if the ship was ten times deeper.”
HONDURAS - A field team from the University of Houston (UH), Texas and the National Science Foundation (NSF) National Center for Airborne Laser Mapping (NCALM) has mapped a remote region of Honduras that may contain the legendary lost city of Ciudad Blanca. The results, recently announced by President Porfirio Lobo, mark the successful completion of the first light detection and ranging (LiDAR) survey of Honduras' Mosquitia region, one of the world's least-explored virgin rainforests.
An initial analysis of the LiDAR survey has identified ruins that could be those of pre-Columbian Ciudad Blanca or other long-hidden sites. The information provides archaeologists with the precise locations of features within fractions of meters for further study.
UH serves as the operational center for NCALM, a collaborative program between UH and the University of California at Berkeley. NCALM focuses on the collection of research quality, airborne LiDAR data for NSF principal investigators, the advancement of airborne LiDAR technology and applications and the education of students to fill positions in academic, government and commercial organizations requiring knowledge of airborne LiDAR.
The NCALM Operational Center's experience in completing more than 150 projects across the nation was critical to the successful completion of the Honduras mapping project, which was initiated by UTL Scientific LLC., a group formed by principals of the Honduran LiDAR survey project. UTL project leader Steve Elkins has been fascinated with the Mosquitia rainforest since his first visit there nearly 20 years ago, but he has been frustrated by the inability of satellite imagery to see under the extremely thick canopy. He contacted researchers at UH, NCALM and Geosensing Systems Engineering (GSE) Graduate Research Program to overcome this obstacle.
By Nir Hasson
A precious cache of gold from the second century CE was discovered in a development-led archeological excavation near Kiryat Gat. The cache contained 140 gold coins, golden jewelry, makeup vessels, a bejeweled ring, and more.
The archeologist found a Roman home on the site. "In the house's garden we discovered a hole that was dug up and covered again," Saar Ganor from the Antiquities Authority described the moment of discovery. "We started digging and a meter into the hole we found the cache, I swung the pick and 140 gold coins simply poured out, it was an amazing moment."
The objects in the cache had trace remains of a fabric, which leads the archeologist to believe that they were wrapped in a fabric and hid in the garden. "It seems that someone hid it there in great haste, planning to come back later and recover it, but didn't," Ganor said.
The coins in the cache make its dating quite accurate. The coins were minted in the reigns of Roman emperors Nero, Nerva, and Trajan. The oldest of the coins is dated to 54 CE; the newest was minted in 117 CE.
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