Stories tagged Great Britain

Feb
05
2013

Royal bones: This is how archaeologists found the bones of King Richard III buried beneath a parking lot in Greyfriar's, England.
Royal bones: This is how archaeologists found the bones of King Richard III buried beneath a parking lot in Greyfriar's, England.Courtesy University of Leicester
Today, many of our former leaders get dropped into the dust bin of cable news commentators and talk radio hosts. But 500 years ago, the options appeared to be a little more drastic.

Researchers yesterday announced that they've confirmed that the bones they found last fall buried under a parking lot in Greyfriars, England, are that of infamous King Richard III.

Further investigation of his full skeleton shows that King Richard suffered traumatic, and fatal, injuries in the course of fighting the Battle of Bosworth. But further analysis also shows that he very likely suffered "humiliation injuries" after his death, signs of displeasure from those who did not agree with his politics or leadership. Click here to learn more about the scientific techniques being used to glean this forensic information from the king. Included is a graphic description of the humiliation injuries King Richard sustained.

Studying bones: Preliminary studies show King Richard had severe scoliosis, but not the hunchback that his post-reign critics want us to believe.
Studying bones: Preliminary studies show King Richard had severe scoliosis, but not the hunchback that his post-reign critics want us to believe.Courtesy University of Leicester
Authorities are also saying that finding the remains of King Richard will reopen the thinking of the young monarch's short reign. Popular depiction since his death was that King Richard was an evil, ruthless killer. Following his demise, a different branch of monarchy came into power and very well could have had an agenda of discrediting his legacy. Already, the discovery of the bones show that Richard III did suffer from severe scoliosis, but probably didn't have the hunchback that legend claims. Could this be the first of several King Richard III myths to be debunked?

After the research is completed, the plan is to entomb King Richard's remains at Leicester Cathedral and to have an interpretive center across the street to tell the details of king's newly discovered story.

Video summary:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/richard-iiis-remains-found-un...

A recently-completed survey in Great Britain shows that, while the number of overweight or obese people has increased, fewer people correctly classify themselves as overweight according to their body-mass index (BMI).

Do you know your BMI, and how you're classified? (Here's how to calculate.) Having a general sense of where you fall along the spectrum might help you make decisions about food and exercise choices before you develop a problem.

Aug
13
2007

Deadly dose: A British teen had severe health problems after consuming 14 shots of espresso in one morning in order to get more energy to do her job. (Flickr photo by augschburger)
Deadly dose: A British teen had severe health problems after consuming 14 shots of espresso in one morning in order to get more energy to do her job. (Flickr photo by augschburger)
Did you hear this one? A teen-ager in England last week had to be rushed to the hospital after suffering an espresso overdose. She slammed 14 shots of the caffine-laced stuff to help her have energy to work the morning shift at her family’s café.

While on duty, her body started to shift into overdrive. She was crying in front of customers and she was acting nervous and jerky. She went home to rest but soon was on her way to the hospital when she became feverish and had trouble breathing. Her heart beats started accelerating, as well.

After she got to the hospital, things started to mellow out. But she was lucky, According to the Mayo Clinic, heavy caffeine consumption -- more than four to seven cups of coffee -- can make you really, really sick. A severe overdose can cause fatal heart palpitations.

Feb
21
2006

Two fascinating stories related to the archaeology of Great Britain and the monetary (dollar) value of significant archaeological finds appeared in the news this week. The first story is related to an archaeological find in Lancaster, and the second is related to an Anglo-Saxon coin which was owned by a man right here in Minnesota.

Most professional archaeologists think of their finds as priceless. An archaeologist is concerned with what their finds can contribute to science, history and maybe future museum displays. While it used to be much more common for archaeological finds to come up for sale in public auction, the importance of an artifacts original context has grown ever more important in modern archaeology, making single artifacts not associated with a known archaeological site far-less desirable. While artifacts are sometimes given a monetary value by an insurance company before it goes on loan to another museum - most professionally acquired artifacts never appear at auction.

The news of the find of a Roman gravestone with a clear etching of a solider caused excitement among archaeologists in Great Britain. Archaeologists were excited by the find because it is in such great condition. Those same archaeologists, however, were saddened by the fact that the developer, who owned the land where the artifact was found, had already spoken to Sotheby's, the famous auction house. It is expected to bring about $100,000 (£357,500) at auction.

The second news story appeared in the StarTribune. The story begins, "For a little more than a year, it was his: a small gold coin 1,200 years old and bearing the likeness of Coenwulf, king of the Anglo-Saxon settlement of Mercia, and the first-known coin reference to a marketplace named London." Allan Davisson, the now former-owner of the coin mortgaged his home to pay for the $400,000 bill for the artifact. Davisson recently sold the coin for a considerable profit to an American collector who was willing to pay $600,000 for the specimen. The new owner plans to sell it to the British Museum in London. The article continues, "It is the first gold coin in Great Britain to bear the image of a monarch and the first to include, on the obverse side, a reference -- in Latin -- to London. British authorities say it may be the most important coin in the realm for its numismatic, historical and cultural value."

The study of numismatics, or money in all its forms, is popular among both professional archaeologists and amateurs. Many types of historic coins are viewed as being valuable because they provide so much information for their context right on the coin itself. The image of an important individual can date a coin to within a few years, and a written description can tell numismatists where the coin was minted, or produced. An early reference to the city of London, like in the coin discussed above makes an artifact like this virtually priceless. Sometimes, however, museums and auction houses alike are asked to put a price on the priceless.

What type of questions do sales like the ones described above bring up for archaeology?

If you were in charge of making laws governing antiquties, like priceless archaeological artifacts, what sort of rules would you make surrounding their sale or removal from their country of origin?

Do you think it should be illegal for certain types of artifacts to be owned by private collectors, rather than museums? Why or why not?

Should certain artifacts, or types of artifacts, that have already been removed from their country of origin be returned, or is it "finders keepers"?

For additional information on the coin described in the StarTribune check out the Santa Clara History in pictures website.