What may be the last holocaust trial was begun in Germany on Monday with the dependent accused Nazi death camp guard 89 year old John Demjanjuk being wheeled into the court seriously ill and in obvious pain. Mr. Demjanjuk is charged with assisting with the murder of almost 28000 people in the Nazi death camp of Sobibor.
This is the second trial of the former American immigrant who has been deported from the United states where he lived after world war II.
In Mr. Demjanjuk's first trial he was convicted in an Israeli court in 1988 and spent five years on death row before being released when it was realized that he was not the accused "Ivan the terrible" a sadistic Nazi death camp guard.
Mr. Demjanjuk's son does not believe his father will survive the trial.
Monday, November 30, 2009
This is a great day for Timbuktu and its collections of ancient manuscripts which have been kept in unsuitable conditions across the legendary city.
Thanks to the government of South Africa a new 200 million rand institute has been built to house the ancient documents.
An expert studying the painting of the last supper by Leonardo Davinci have come to the conclusion that the artist may have used his shadow to create the figure of Jesus in his painting.
Saturday, November 28, 2009
Here is a nice video from our friends at Discovery on the taking of digital images of the shroud of Turin believed by some to be the death shroud of Jesus Christ.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
The shroud of Turin is kept in the royal crypt of the cathedral of Saint John the Baptist in Turin Italy, the shroud first appeared in 1357 when the widow of a French knight Geoffroi de Charny had it displayed in a church in Lirey France.
Problem becomes that many European cathedrals possessed their own versions of the death shroud of Jesus. Holy relics are important and often cheap to create there are dozens of nails in holy sanctuaries though the crucifixion would only have require probably 4 or less not to forget the tonnes of wooden splinters passing as parts of the true cross.
Unfortunately carbon 14 tests taken a few years ago found the cloth to be of medieval date. Having said that the protocol of those tests was changed at last minute and only one sample was tested from a well handled corner of the cloth.
The 1917 Catholic encyclopedia says of the shroud;
"Owing mainly to the researches of Canon Ulysse Chevalier a series of documents was discovered which clearly proved that in 1389 the Bishop of Troyes appealed to Clement VII, the Avignon Pope then recognized in France, to put a stop to the scandals connected to the Shroud preserved at Lirey. It was, the Bishop declared, the work of an artist who some years before had confessed to having painted it but it was then being exhibited by the Canons of Lirey in such a way that the populace believed that it was the authentic shroud of Jesus Christ. The pope, without absolutely prohibiting the exhibition of the Shroud, decided after full examination that in the future when it was shown to the people, the priest should declare in a loud voice that it was not the real shroud of Christ, but only a picture made to represent it."
This is not evidence of authenticity certainly but a closing door of authenticity with tests which can be done and should be done properly so that the shroud hold its proper place without a misleading context, if it has one?
Now an expert from the Vatican believes that faint writing found on the shroud of Turin proves the cloth to have been the burial shroud of Jesus.
Saturday, November 21, 2009
This article has a few new details on the recent find of pieces of the scientist Galileo in a wood box at auction. The tooth and two digits were in a blown glass bowl inside the chest which has an effigy of Galileo on it.
What some people will collect?
What some people will collect?
Climbers have made some recent discovery of sacred Buddhist caves filled with art and manuscripts. Nice video!
Friday, November 20, 2009
This is an article on skeletons found at Montreal's Basilique which was not unexpected. I have also included the link to Notre Dame Basilique which has a nice slide show.
Basilique Notre Dame :
Relics including fingers and a tooth from Galileo have recently been recovered and identified at an auction which was selling them as unidentified artifacts.
The fingers and tooth were removed from the corpse 95 years after Galileo's death in a reburial ceremony in 1737 by a man who was coveting the scientists head.
These types of relics rarely appear on the market but today perhaps the right thing to do is return them to the crypt where they belong.
Friday, November 13, 2009
Interesting video on footage believed to depict a head shrinking ceremony. The footage was taken in the 1960's and if confirmed is the only known film on the subject.
Thursday, November 12, 2009
A painted Mayan pyramid has been found illustrating images never encountered before in such context.
Monday, November 9, 2009
Archaeologists in Peru have found an important burial of a woman from 300 - 450 ad complete with obsidian points. Sadly no picture!
Saturday, November 7, 2009
The new revamped Ashmolean museum opens up with a new airy look interior that is sure to be controversial.
Thursday, November 5, 2009
These are fascinating pictures of bronze age skeletons recently found in an excavation in Germany.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
Archaeologists have discovered a hoard of marble slabs and colored stones some decorated with inscriptions. The stones are believed to have been buried when the city of Acra was devastated by the Mameluks in 1291.
Sunday, November 1, 2009
The grave of the youngest Moche noble has been found at the famous site of Sipan.