Smart News History & Archaeology

The new coin depicting Charles III

See the New British Coins Featuring Charles III

In his new portrait, the king faces left—and doesn't wear a crown

The S.S. Mesaba

Cool Finds

The Ship That Tried to Warn the Titanic Has Been Found

Scientists discovered the S.S. Mesaba in the Irish Sea—with the help of multibeam sonar

A close-up of Stonehenge in Salisbury, England

What Do Stonehenge and Japanese Stone Circles Have in Common?

A new exhibition explores the surprising parallels between British and Japanese traditions

A different page from the Beauvais Missal, a manuscript created in the late 13th century

Cool Finds

Man Pays $75 for Medieval Text That Could Be Worth $10,000

He spotted the page from the 13th-century Beauvais Missal at an estate sale in Maine

Lizzo plays President James Madison’s flute at the Library of Congress

Lizzo Played a 200-Year-Old Glass Flute Given to James Madison

The Library of Congress invited the musician, a classically trained flutist, to play the instrument at her concert this week

Ruins of Tikal, where researchers found high concentrations of mercury 

Ancient Maya Cities Were Polluted With High Levels of Mercury

The concentrations at some dig sites could be hazardous for today's archaeologists

Goods from a grave site at Issendorf cemetery in Lower-Saxony, Germany. 

DNA From Skeletons Reveals Large Migration to Early Medieval England

A new study could close a long-standing debate about movement of people post-Roman rule

Members of Ho-Chunk Nation and the Bad River Band of the Lake Superior Chippewa help clean the 3,000-year-old canoe found in Lake Mendota.

3,000-Year-Old Dugout Canoe Recovered From Wisconsin Lake

Archaeologists believe it’s the oldest canoe ever found in the Great Lakes region

The pink granite sarcophagus of Ptah-M-Wia, an important official during the reign of Ramses II

Cool Finds

Sarcophagus of Ramses II's Chief Treasurer Discovered at Saqqara

Egyptian archaeologists unearthed the empty, 3,200-year-old coffin of Ptah-M-Wia, a high-ranking New Kingdom official

Female Figure

Who Were the Painters of Pompeii?

A new exhibition explores the ancient Roman "pictores," who created beautiful frescoes preserved in ash from Mount Vesuvius' eruption

Some of the 14th-century B.C.E. vessels found at the Tel Yehud burial site

Cool Finds

Archaeologists Discover Evidence of Earliest Known Opium Use

At a burial site in Israel, pottery from the 14th century B.C.E. contained traces of the drug

Donkeys are important pack animals that helped shape human civilizations.

Scientists Uncover the Story of Donkey Domestication

Humans tamed the equines about 7,000 years ago in East Africa, new research suggests

Adnan Syed, the subject of a 2014 investigation led by Sarah Koenig on the podcast “Serial,” leaves the courthouse after being released from prison.

Adnan Syed, Subject of 'Serial,' Is Released From Prison

The decision comes 23 years after he was convicted for the murder of 18-year-old Hae Min Lee

Palestinian farmer Salman al-Nabahin cleans the mosaic he uncovered in Gaza.

Cool Finds

Palestinian Farmer Unearths Byzantine-Era Mosaic While Planting Olive Trees

The stunning, colorful flooring depicts 17 iconographies of birds and animals

Earlier this week, American investigators returned a looted rare quarter shekel silver coin to Israel.

Ancient Coin Made in Defiance of Roman Rule Returns to Israel

U.S. officials found the stolen coin at a Denver auction in 2017

Gwendolyn Midlo Hall

Gwendolyn Midlo Hall, Whose Database Identified Thousands of Enslaved Laborers, Has Died at 93

Searching through forgotten records, she collected data on more than 100,000 individuals

Barack and Michelle Obama at the unveiling ceremony on September 7

Who Are the Artists Behind the New Obama Portraits?

Robert McCurdy and Sharon Sprung add their unique pieces to the White House's collection

Some of the returned artifacts

Panama

The Netherlands Repatriates 343 Ceramics to Panama

The pre-Hispanic pottery pieces range from bowls to plates to burial vessels

Oregon’s Umpqua National Forest, where Swastika Mountain is located

Oregon's Swastika Mountain Gets a New Name

The mountain was originally named before the swastika became a symbol of hate

Loving Highsmith aims to challenge crime author Patricia Highsmith’s reputation as a cold-hearted misanthrope.

Was Patricia Highsmith Actually a Hopeless Romantic?

The documentary 'Loving Highsmith' presents a new side of the enigmatic crime writer

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