Wednesday, 4 November 2009

The death of the Naza civilisation and the discovery of an Iron Age treasure hoard

£1 million hoard of Iron Age gold necklaces unearthed in Scotland
Following the discovery of the Staffordshire hoard in July, an amateur treasure hunter, David Booth, recently found four torcs, which date from the 1st to the 3rd century BC, with his metal detector in a field near Stirling. The discovery has been described as the most significant find of Iron Age work in the country and may revolutionise our understanding of ancient Scottish history. The Scotsman and The Times report.

Did deforestation kill the Nazca civilisation?
Reuters reports on a study released yesterday by the University of Cambridge which has suggested that the demise of the ancient Nazca civilisation in Peru was hastened by deforestation. The Nazca people are believed to have felled large numbers of huarango trees to clear valleys for farming thus upsetting the ecosystem. The findings are published in the journal Latin American Antiquity.

Sale of controversial Chinese stamp
The BBC reports on the sale of a 1968 Chinese stamp that was withdrawn from circulation the day it was issued because it failed to show Taiwan as part of communist China. The stamp sold for £290,000.

Argentina’s last military ruler on trial
Argentina’s last military ruler Reynaldo Bignone, who was president from 1982-83, went on trial on Monday, along with five other retired generals accused of torture and murders in the Campo de Mayo military base, one of the country’s largest torture centres during the military dictatorship. Read the article by the Associated Press.

Photos of the East German frontier then and now
At the beginning of March 1981, Jurgen Ritter set off from the town of Schnackenburg in Lower Saxony near the border separating East and West Germany to begin his journey south along the frontier of East Germany on the western side. He recalls his two-year journey, from the Baltic Sea to the Czech border, in an article on the Spiegel Online. Ritter recently retraced his journey to photograph the same sites a second time. The article features a slideshow comparing both sets of images.

New treasures on display at the Brontë Parsonage Museum
A collection of items that belonged to Charlotte Brontë was recently donated to the museum by a private owner living in Canada. The owner’s great grandfather was the nephew of Mary Anna Bell, the second wife of Arthur Bell Nicholls. Nicholls’ first marriage was to Charlotte Brontë, who died the year after their marriage.
Further information is available on the Brontë Parsoange Blog.

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