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valuable relics are removed to Bloomsbury, they will become lost in a crowd. Moreover, a church is their fitting resting-place.
A point of exceptional interest which was brought out at the recent meeting of the Somersetshire Archæological Society, by a communication from Mr. J. Page, of Williton, is the discovery of a stone at Winsford, Exmoor, bearing the inscription CARATACI FPUS. Such is the reading of Professor Rhys, who, however, is uncertain about the second word. He has visited the place, and pronounces this stone to be one of the most important monuments in South-Western England. Steps have already been taken for the preservation of the stone, and for such further explorations as may seem desirable.
The Speaker, in a recent speech at Leamington, started the interesting subject of the
have believed they were trying to hoax him. What he found was a well-preserved hardboiled egg! Lying near it was a little vase and a spoon. The egg was encased with clay. Mr. Bellows was unable to hand the egg round for inspection, because after it had been exposed to the air for an hour or so it faded away before his eyes into a pale dust; but he was confident that it was an egg, boiled in the officers' quarters of the Roman garrison, and said that when he found it it was in a wonderful state of preservation. The egg-spoon had not faded away, and he handed it round for inspection." This preservation of an unfossilized egg for fifteen centuries does really require rather a large swallow.
mace of the House of Commons, with the Notes of the Month (Foreign). result that the special authority on historic insignia, Mr. W. H. St. John Hope, contributed a valuable letter to the Times on August 28 which thus concludes: "I have little doubt that the shaft of the mace belongs to the one made by him in 1649, as it is quite possible that the old head and foot were recast to form the new head and foot of 1660. So far from the famous 'bauble
having been lost, it may be said to be, to all intents and purposes, still borne before the Speaker of the House of Commons." This subject will probably be treated of in detail in a subsequent issue of the Antiquary.
A sceptic has been generously defined as "one who is yet undecided as to what is true." With all possible respect to that able Roman archæologist, Mr. John Bellows, of Gloucester, may we venture to say that we are sceptical, in the above sense, with regard to a most astonishing statement made by that gentleman to the members of the Royal Archæological Institute at their recent meeting at Gloucester? He was describing a kitchen waste-heap uncovered outside the prætorium of the old Roman garrison. "It was on this heap," says the Gloucester Journal, "that Mr. Bellows had made the startling discovery. He made it himself, he said; if the navvies had told him of it he should
Two important discoveries have occurred in carrying on the works for laying out on a new plan the city of Rome. In the quarter of the recently obliterated villa Ludovisi, an ancient fountain in Greek marble has come to light, similar to two others which may be seen in the so-called lapidary gallery of the Vatican Museum. It is formed of two square basins, placed one above the other, the upper and smaller basin having a niche in the middle of each of its four sides, and above this niche a vase in the shape of an olla, from which the water ran in one stream over steps into the larger basin below. The fountain, which was not large, was surrounded by a marble grating, of which fragments have been found.
Near the church of the Crociferi, at the fountain of Trevi, in digging for a water-pipe, a much-worn Greek marble relief has been found, representing a caparisoned horse, upon the croup of which can be seen a foot and the border of a woman's attire, probably that of a Victory. Beneath the horse a nude genius is seen flying in the air.
At Milan, a piece of old Roman road made of large paving-stones has been found at
three mètres depth beneath the actual level of the soil in a good state of preservation.
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At Treviglio, in Lombardy, in digging foundations under an old wall, about one mètre deep, was found a jar full of fine mediæval coins. They number several thousands, and belong to the Dukes of Milan, and the Imperial Vicars Barnabó, Barnabó Galeazzo, and Galeazzo Visconti.
The Italian Minister of Public Instruction has despatched a mission to Locri, in Magna Græcia, to draw up a topographical and archæological plan of the whole site of this ancient Greek settlement. Meanwhile, the sculptures found here by Dr. Orsi last winter have been put together in the National Museum at Naples. Dr. Orsi-whose name will be henceforth connected with his discovery this year at Locri of the two Greek temples, built by the Greeks on Italian soil, one prehistoric, the other dating from the best period —has returned to his post as director of the museum at Syracuse, where he is exploring the prehistoric burial-places of the neighbourhood. He has already made discoveries of some importance in this branch, sufficient to throw light on the hitherto unsolved problem of the aboriginal inhabitants of Sicily. Of these excavations and discoveries connected with ancient Sicilian sepulchral rites he will shortly publish a full and detailed account. Excavations at Locri will be resumed later in the season.
At Smyrna a discovery has been made near the Konák (Governor's palace) of some marble columns, of a mosaic pavement, and of two headless statues. It is reported that excavations will be made here in consequence.
At Athens the Archæological Society has undertaken excavations at the Dipylon, namely, outside the ancient Peribolos of the city, where stood the Necropolis. On August 4 work began on the east side, behind the monument of Dionysios. The principal discovery, so far, is that of a monument of a good period, about two mètres high, having the figure of a woman richly clothed carved in relief. The preliminary operations from May 9 to July 28 were remarkable for
nothing but the unearthing of considerable remains of ancient walls, one of which was built in great part of poros stone in equal courses (opus isodomon), and of some tombs formed of terra-cotta tiles, containing only bones and rude unfigured pottery. Roman sepulchral cippi with inscriptions. were found at the same time, four belonging to men and two to women. In one of the tombs was found a Roman coin, which served as Charon's obolus. The excavations, which are under the direction of Prof. Mylonas, will include the whole cemetery around and under the modern church of the Holy Trinity.
The Greek Government has approved the project of a railway from Pyrgos to the ruins of Olympia, which was begun in the middle of September.
Archæological Society, having just made a
A member of the council of the Greek
tour of inspection in the Peloponnesus, writes from Athens, under date August 24, that at Licosura, where the colossal statue of the Despoina was recently found in fragments, the excavations still continue under Mr. Lacudia at the expense of the Government. They have now revealed the whole plan of the temple, and also of the portico mentioned by Pausanias. At Megalopolis, he thinks, the British School cannot continue their excavations and bring them to a successful issue without greater means than they have hitherto had at their disposal, as the work has proved to be very expensive.
Meanwhile, the Greek Society is pushing on its excavations at Mycenæ, under Mr. Tzountas; and of the temple of Amphiaraus, at Oropus, under Mr. Leonardo. Moreover, it has sent Mr. Staïs to Rhammus to open out the foundations of the temple there a work of great importance. In a short time the Society will begin excavating on the Acropolis of Tanagra and its neighbourhood. impossible, however, as yet to say for what purpose served the double portico of Roman times, of which so many columns of Hymettan marble have recently been found in situ during the excavations made by the Society in Athens, between the clock of Andromikos
and the so-called Market Gate (Oil Market). The bottom was lined with slate covered with Time may reveal.
An interesting discovery has been made at Indrehus, Breinanger, Norway, of a gravechamber constructed of large rough stones, about 2 feet below the surface and close to the beach. It contained parts of an iron sword, an axe, an implement the use of which cannot be defined, and a stone pearl of grayish colour. No mention is made of human remains.
In Hole, near the Christiania fjord, a Viking barrow has been opened, a sword, a spear, an axe, a shield, and a horse-bit with chain being found. In this spot there are no less than sixteen huge barrows, which have never been touched, some being encircled with boulders. It is therefore believed that a battle was fought here in the Viking Age. Arrangements are being made by the University of Christiania to have the barrows excavated.
The Swedish National Museum has just acquired a highly important collection from the Bronze Age, recently found in southern Sweden, consisting of eight perfect clay forms for casting bronze axes of various sizes, one being of particularly handsome shape. They were found in a cairn, and are as perfect as if made yesterday. They date from the early Bronze Age.
A hitherto unknown runic stone has been discovered at Cimbris, in southern Sweden, the inscription and shape of the runes indicating that it dates from the Bronze Age.
In a peat bog in Scania a find has been made consisting of a large highly ornamented silver buckle, five spurs, ten small and sixteen large silver eyes, such as were used in the Middle Ages for lacing a dress, and four coins bearing the date 1563. The entire collection, which is very valuable, will be purchased by the National Museum.
At Espö an ancient burial chamber has been discovered, but unfortunately it was tampered with by peasants. Its inner length is 3 mètres, its width 1 mètre, and its depth 1 mètres.
sand. The size of the chamber would seem to indicate that it had contained several persons. A handsome flint dagger was found.
In the pulling down of an old building near Skofele a remarkable iron slab has been found, 85 centimètres in height, and 67 in breadth. It is divided into two halves, the upper one of which represents in high relief the fight of St. George with the Dragon. The drawing is excellent, and the contours as distinct as if just cast. Behind the horse the princess is seen standing on an eminence before the castle absorbed in prayer, a lamb being represented below, the symbol of innocence. Above St. George is seen an angel, stretching forth the wreath of victory and sounding the trumpet of fame. The lower part is nearly destroyed by rust, but some figures of animals can be made out, as, for instance, a squirrel standing on the back of some other animal blowing a horn, and two female figures. It is considered that the work is several hundred years old.
During the present summer the Swedish Academy of Archæology has twelve eminent savants at work in various parts of Sweden, one continuing the examination of the interesting cave on Great Carl's Island, in the Baltic, referred to in our July issue. * * *
In cutting a peat bog at Vendsyssel, in Denmark, the other day, two large bronze rings were found, both being alike. They weigh
lb. each, and are held together with hooks. They were, no doubt, used as an orna
At the ancient castle of Herlufsholm, one of the most important in Denmark, some interesting MSS. have been discovered, among them being autograph letters from several rulers during the Middle Ages. One document, dated 750 years ago, is pronounced to be the oldest MS. extant in Scandinavia.
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A historical antiquarian society has been formed at Kolding, and it is the intention to establish an archæological museum in the best preserved rooms of the ruins of the old castle of that name.
The Archæological Society of Randers has carried out the excavations of several of the curious "kitchen middens" found in Denmark, the result being highly interesting. The society is to build itself a new museum.
Apropos of the discovery of some ancient frescoes in a Danish church, referred to in our last issue, Prof. Magnus Petersen read a paper at the meeting of the Royal Northern Ancient Record Society of Copenhagen.
There are in Denmark sufficient church frescoes to follow the development of this art from the twelfth to the sixteenth century. The earliest were the best executed in every respect, as after the year 1300 there is a deterioration. From the subsequent period there are few frescoes in Denmark due to the continual wars, but from the fifteenth century there are many. However, the subjects are then changed. Instead of the earlier representations from the life of Christ, the subjects are realistic, and intended to inspire horror. The devil, hell, with all its horrors, etc., are then the subjects preferred. It is, therefore, the more remarkable to have discovered in Skive Church frescoes dating from 1522 with purely Biblical subjects. In the dome of the choir are painted the Lord and the Saviour surrounded by worshipping angels, whilst in the five domes of the nave are portraits of Apostles and saints. Even after the Reformation, down to 1562, portraits are drawn of saints, and from this period, too, there is a fresco in Skævinge Church, by Frederikoborg, representing the well-known myth of Holger Danske, the only one of its kind in Denmark.
An archæological discovery of considerable interest has been made in a quarry at Kertsch, in southern Russia. The workmen came upon a catacomb with numerous inscriptions, emblems, and frescoes. It has the form of a chamber, borne by thirteen pillars, artistically ornamented. One of the latter bears the following inscription: "The Judge Sorak built this sanctum without removing the human bones found here. May no one touch or desecrate my corpse! for he who does so shall not enter the realm of the spirits."
The museum at Constantinople, in which are stored all the antique treasures found in the Turkish Empire, is being enlarged with a new wing. Its completion is eagerly awaited, as here is to be mounted the magnificent sarcophagus discovered some time ago at Sidon, believed to be that of Alexander the Great, besides other treasures. Hamdi Bey, the well-known director, will issue an important pamphlet upon the former. It is reported that in the same locality where this sarcophagus was found a chamber has been discovered with five splendid sarcophagi, which are also to be brought to Constantinople. * *
An archæological find of interest has been made at Tier, consisting of the torso of an equestrian statue, a fairly well-preserved Triton, and a second equestrian statue with a postament 1 mètres in height. The latter represents a Roman soldier charging, and a conquered barbarian lies between the horse's feet. In the postament are four niches which have evidently contained statuettes. Two have been found representing Minerva and Juno, with the head of a third statuette, apparently that of a Hercules. It is surmised that the fourth statuette was one of Mercury. The statuettes are cut in the red sandstone common in the district. The statue is no doubt that of some celebrated warrior. Similar memorials and figures have been found several times in the adjacent Gallo-Germanic provinces. The museum at Mayence possesses five similar memorials.
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A mound nine mètres in height, on the battlefield of Marathon, has been excavated and found to contain a number of urns filled with ashes and bones, the urns themselves being covered with a layer of ashes. The remains are believed to be those of the Athenians who fell at Marathon. Some six years ago Dr. Schliemann searched in vain for the grave of those heroes.
At Bassorah, during some excavations, a large number of ancient coins were found, which are thought to be of great value and interest. They have been sent to Constantinople.
The remains of a temple, dating back to the period of the Incas, have been dis
covered in Peru while clearing the ground for a railway in the neighbourhood of Yurimaguas, a small place on one of the affluents of the Upper Maranon, in the great plain which lies at the foot of the Eastern Cordilleras. There was an enclosing wall of great extent fully 80 inches thick, the enclosure within being divided by other walls into halls and smaller chambers. The plan and the painted inscriptions resemble what has been found in other places ascertained to be ancient Peruvian temples; hence it is inferred that this also was a similar temple. Several buildings of this kind have been found scattered over Peru. The Spaniards demolished them, and floods bearing quantities of sand from the Cordilleras covered over the remains, to be succeeded later by a growth of shrubs and even trees, quite hiding from view the masonry underneath. The Peruvian Government has been moved by this recent discovery, and some regular excavations will be undertaken on sites where temples and even towns are known to have existed prior to the conquest.
the past, connected directly with the most stirring events of the fourteenth century!
The red-brick building which faces the spectator, though modern in outward appearance, is only the outer coating or shell of the splendid Baronial Hall of the castle, in which Courts and Parliaments have been held for 600 years. The grand proportions of this room must strike everyone: the walls seven feet in thickness, the high roof timbered with massive beams, and the great width and length, which admit of courts of justice, juryrooms, staircase, etc., being built inside it without any crowding or inconvenience. Two of the original Norman windows only are left to show what the effect must have been when the hall was entirely lighted by them.
The river Soar, now being utilized as a canal, runs just below the castle, and must have greatly increased the strength of its position.
Just below the two Norman windows already mentioned is a flight of underground steps, leading to what is called the dungeon, a vaulted chamber in excellent preservation, which adjoins the grassy mount, formerly crowned by the keep, but now encircled with trees. Beyond this, "John of Gaunt's arch
Leicester Castle and its Pro way" fills up the immediate foreground, and
By MRS. CHAWORTH MUSTERS.
N a quiet nook at the outskirts of the thriving town of Leicester stands a group of buildings which, in historical interest can hardly be surpassed in the Midlands. Turning out of the stream of traffic which fills the modern streets of the old Danelagh stronghold, a green oasis presents itself, entered through an old, timbered archway, which cuts off the present from the past, the world of dream from the world of business. Here round a grass plat are grouped, as in the Middle Ages, a church, an assize hall, medieval gateways, the mound of a castle-keep, and a hospital for the aged poor.
Interesting even to the casual observer, how much more so is this scene to those who realize that they are looking on a remnant of
St. Mary's Church faces the castle.
Before describing the remainder of this historical group of buildings, it may be well to think over a few of the reminiscences connected with the spot. The date of the foundation of the earliest castle at Leicester is lost in antiquity, but, to come down to comparatively modern days, it was rebuilt by Simon de Montfort, the great Earl of Leicester, in the thirteenth century. The hall was then "a large apartment, with aisles formed by two rows of oak pillars supporting the roof, five on each side, thirty feet high, with carved capitals."
After the defeat and death of De Montfort, King Henry III. granted his possessions at Leicester to his son Edmund Plantagenet, the founder of that great family of Lancaster, with whose history and fortunes Leicester is so closely connected.
The two sons of Prince Edmund (Thomas and Henry) were successively Earls of Leicester, Derby, and Lancaster, as after the execu