Tuesday, December 6, 2016

PLOS ONE: Queen Nefertari, the Royal Spouse of Pharaoh Ramses II: A Multidisciplinary Investigation of the Mummified Remains Found in Her Tomb (QV66)

PLOS ONE: Queen Nefertari, the Royal Spouse of Pharaoh Ramses II: A Multidisciplinary Investigation of the Mummified Remains Found in Her Tomb (QV66) 

Queen Nefertari, the favourite Royal Consort of Pharaoh Ramses II (Ancient Egypt, New Kingdom, 19th Dynasty c. 1250 BC) is famous for her beautifully decorated tomb in the Valley of the Queens. Her burial was plundered in ancient times yet still many objects were found broken in the debris when the tomb was excavated. Amongst the found objects was a pair of mummified legs. They came to the Egyptian Museum in Turin and are henceforth regarded as the remains of this famous Queen, although they were never scientifically investigated. The following multidisciplinary investigation is the first ever performed on those remains. The results (radiocarbon dating, anthropology, paleopathology, genetics, chemistry and Egyptology) all strongly speak in favour of an identification of the remains as Nefertari’s, although different explanations—albeit less likely—are considered and discussed. The legs probably belong to a lady, a fully adult individual, of about 40 years of age. The materials used for embalming are consistent with Ramesside mummification traditions and indeed all objects within the tomb robustly support the burial as of Queen Nefertari. 

Read More here @ PLOS ONE and Science Recorder and Eureka Alert

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Medieval Movement of Belgian Holy Women

Beguines were a religious movement of women who weren’t wives but also weren’t fully ordained in a religious order. There is a long history of Christian mystics, and they occupied a twilight zone in which they could move between the secular and religious worlds. They didn’t need to bear the burden of married life, but also weren’t forced to seclude themselves as nuns did, leading active and economically useful lives as single women. 
The movement founds its origin in 12th century when mulieres religiosae, holy women, began grouping together in cities of present day Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany and Northern France. Here they lived in voluntary poverty and preached sexual abstinence, while living lives in the service of the poor and marginalized. One such holy woman, the 23-year old widow Juetta of Huy, left her family in the city of Liege around 1181 to serve lepers. She then spent the last 36-years of her life immured as an anchorite.
Around 1230 these holy women had started to be called “beguines”, a term that was most likely initially used pejoratively, but whose original meaning is lost to history. Some of these communities formed separate, walled communities called beguinages, located just outside the city walls. 
Read More here at Atlas Obscura - Medieval Beguines

Crusader debris found on Mount Zion

Debris from crusader attack on Queen of Jerusalem found on Mount Zion - Archaeology - Haaretz - Israel News | Haaretz.com

Excavations carried out on Mt. Zion have found a destruction layer dating to the 12th century C.E., when Baldwin III stormed the crusader citadel in order to wrest power over Jerusalem from his mother, Queen Melisende.
The intriguing layer of black ashy deposits, dated to around 1153 C.E., was discovered on the west side of the excavation site on Mt. Zion by the University of North Carolina at Charlotte this summer, led by Shimon Gibson, James Tabor and Rafi Lewis.
That said, a coin found in this layer was identified by coins expert Robert Kool of the Israel Antiquities Authority as belonging to the “rough series” of coins issued by Baldwin III, possibly starting in 1152 or 1153. The coin attributed to Baldwin III raises an interesting historical episode. It was in 1152 that Baldwin III (who reigned from 1143-1163) came to Jerusalem, to wrest power from his mother, Melisende, Queen of Jerusalem from 1131 to 1153 through no design of her own. Melisende at the time was residing in the palace next to the citadel on the west side of the city.
Read More At Haaretz dot com

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Skeleton Of Medieval Giantess Unearthed From Polish Cemetery

Skeleton Of Medieval Giantess Unearthed From Polish Cemetery

Just outside of the Medieval church of the Ostrów Lednicki stronghold in Poland, archaeologists have unearthed the strange burial of a giantess. The woman’s skeleton showed that she reached a towering height of 7’2″ but also that her short life was full of traumatic injuries and disease.
The giantess was found in a cemetery that was once used solely by the elite of the area: dignitaries, the very wealthy, and people connected with Bolesław the Brave, the king of Poland in the early 11th century, and with the local Piast ruling dynasty. By the late 12th century, though, the cemetery saw more and more burials of commoners, with over 2,500 skeletons recovered at the site of Ostrów Lednicki Island.
But in spite of the elite nature of the cemetery, its most famous resident is a woman from a lower social class who died in her late 20s. Writing recently in the book New Developments in the Bioarchaeology of Care, archaeologists Magdalena Matczak and Tomasz Kozłowski detail the intriguing skeleton and the odd nature of the grave.
Read more here >>> Forbes dot com

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Vestiges of the Vikings

Vestiges of the Vikings: Magic Buried in a Viking Woman's Grave | Ancient Origins

Murky, elusive and undefined, the religion of the pre-Christian Vikings has long been subject to debate. Contemporary texts of their spiritual worship do not survive, and the later records that do survive stem from Christian authors. Thus they are tainted with a Christian worldview and anti-pagan opinions. The magic of the Vikings, however, is somewhat a secondary field of interest. Though intricately linked with the pagan beliefs of the Norse, it is in many ways more undefined due to the ritual sacrifice of magical items.
In 1894, a curved metal rod was discovered in a 9th-10th century female grave in Romsdal, Norway. Scholars have debated its intention for years, shuffling between theories that it was a "fishing hook or a spit for roasting meat", before realizing in 2013 that it was likely a form of a magic wand. The bend toward the top of the wand was seemingly made just before the wand was laid to rest with the woman, as if to stem its magical properties. This particular wand fits the traditional mold of a seiðr wand based on previous discoveries dating from the 9th and 10th centuries. It is long (at 90cm), made of iron (consistent with the materials circulating of the Norse Iron Age) with "knobs attached to them" for the benefit of the wielder.
Read more at Ancient Origins

Ancient Bling In Tomb of Chinese Woman

Ancient Bling: Exquisite Jewelry Found in Tomb of Chinese Woman

Around 1,500 years ago, at a time when China was divided, a woman named Farong was laid to rest wearing fantastic jewelry, which included a necklace of 5,000 beads and "exquisite" earrings, archaeologists report.
Her tomb was discovered in 2011 in Datong City, China, by a team of archaeologists with the Datong Municipal Institute of Archaeology who were surveying the area before a construction project. The researchers excavated the tomb, conserved the artifacts and reconstructed the necklace.
Her epitaph, found by the tomb entrance, reads simply, "Han Farong, the wife of Magistrate Cui Zhen" (as translated in the journal article). In China, the surname is traditionally written first and the given name second.
While no other burials were found in Farong's tomb, the archaeologists did discover two other tombs nearby that are in the process of being studied.
Read more at Yahoo! News

Meritamun: The Face of Egyptian Beauty

From Ancient Origins:
The face of a young Egyptian woman who lived at least 2,000-years-ago has been reconstructed from a 3D print out of her skull. The forensic techniques employed revealed surprising facts about the beautiful woman, who has been named Meritamun, meaning beloved of the god Amun.
Researchers from the University of Melbourne in Australia, in collaboration with the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine, used new technologies, including CT scanning, 3D printing and well known forensic facial reconstruction. Although, the mummy is incomplete, the remains stayed wrapped throughout the process.
The head of a mummy has spent more than 90 years in the basement, which belongs to the University of Melbourne. According to the researchers, she died as a young woman between the age 18 and 25. It was determined due to the width of her mouth and the positioning of her teeth, and her nose shape and size was determined by the width of the nasal aperture. The researchers also found out that she had quite large eyes. Other parts of the body were lost due to unknown reasons.

Ancient Stone Depicting Queen Hatshepsut Discovered

Ancient Stone Depicting First Female Egyptian Pharaoh Queen Hatshepsut Discovered

"On the pillars are representations of several versions of the god Khnum, as well as other gods, such as Imi-peref 'He-who-is-in-his-house,' Nebet-menit 'Lady-of-the-mooring-post' and Min-Amun of Nubia," the Ministry of Antiquities wrote. "The building thus not only adds to our knowledge of the history of Queen Hatshepsut, but also to our understanding of the religious beliefs current on the Island of Elephantine during her reign."
Queen Hatshepsut stepped into her reign at the age of 12 years old when she wed her half-brother Thutmose II. Thutmose II died at a young age, and Hatshepsut became a guide for Thutmose III before assuming the role herself, possibly because of political threats. To keep her legitimacy as a fit ruler and not just a "great wife" of the king, Hatshepsut had to reinvent herself as a man. (The blocks refer to Queen Hatshepsut as a woman, which indicates that they're probably from the beginning of her reign, as she was referred to as a male later on.)
In her reign, she brought wealth through a successful trade expedition and grand building projects. After her death, Thutmose III erased almost all remnants of Hatshepsut, including her buildings and images. Scholars didn't learn of her existence until 1822.  

Powerful Norman Women

Powerful Norman women: Gunnor, Emma of Normandy, Matilda and Sichelgaita | History Extra
History tends to focus on kings, warriors and bishops – but a number of 11th-century women were hugely influential in war, state and church. Leonie Hicks introduces a quartet of powerful Norman women.
This article might best begin by paraphrasing a popular bon mot: ‘behind every successful Norman man was a brilliant woman’. Here I will focus on four of them: Gunnor (c950–1031), Emma of Normandy (c985–1052), Matilda of Flanders (c1031–1083) and Sichelgaita (1040–1090).
We are fortunate that enough evidence survives from the 11th and 12th centuries to provide insights into the lives, activities and roles expected of the women who married Normans, or who were themselves Norman and married into other ruling houses. Chronicles such as the History of the Normans by Dudo of Saint-Quentin, and works by Orderic Vitalis, Amatus of Montecassino and Anna Comnena, furnish us with glimpses into how these women were regarded by their contemporaries.

Continue reading article from History Extra

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

International Day of the Girl Child - 11 October

The world’s 1.1 billion girls are part of a large and vibrant global generation poised to take on the future. Yet the ambition for gender equality in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) highlights the preponderance of disadvantage and discrimination borne by girls everywhere on a daily basis. Only through explicit focus on collecting and analyzing girl-focused, girl-relevant and sex-disaggregated data, and using these data to inform key policy and program decisions, can we adequately measure and understand the opportunities and challenges girls face, and identify and track progress towards solutions to their most pressing problems.
With this in mind, the theme for this year's International Day of the Girl (11 October) is Girls' Progress = Goals' Progress: What Counts for Girls. While we can applaud the ambition and potential of the SDGs for girls, and recognize how girls’ progress is good not only for girls, but also for families, communities and society at large, we must also take this opportunity to consider how existing gaps in data on girls and young women, lack of systematic analysis, and limited use of existing data significantly limit our ability to monitor and communicate the wellbeing and progress of half of humanity.
Much more can and needs to be done to harness the data required to ensure programs, policies and services effectively respond to the specific needs of girls. When we invest in girls’ health, safety, education and rights - in times of peace and crisis - we empower them to reach for their dreams and build better lives for themselves and their communities. Only when investments in programs for girls on issues that particularly affect them - due to both their age and gender - are complemented with corresponding investments in data on girls, can we make real progress towards greater accountability in domains of critical importance to them.

Read More Here @ UN dot Org

Saturday, October 8, 2016

The remains of Amelia Earhart may have been found on an island

Ric Gillespie of The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR) says that the fate of Amelia Earhart may be much more saddening than first thought. He believes she died as a castaway on a different Pacific island.
Four months into her trip around the world, Earhart began to run low on fuel while trying to find Howland Island. Both the engineer onboard and Amelia herself were last seen on radar on June 2.
It is unknown what actually happened to the pair, but Gillespie says that they did not die in a watery crash. He says that both Earhart and Noonan landed on an island called Nikumaroro, which is around 400 Miles southeast of Howland Island.
Continue reading article courtesy of The Vintage News

Saturday, October 1, 2016

No Scrubs: How Women Fought To Become Doctors

Women have always been intimately involved in medical matters – and not only through their familiarity with the act of expelling oversized babies from undersized pelvises. In the Middle Ages and beyond, women worked as midwives, nurses, apothecaries, bone-setters and surgeons. Yet, as the study of medicine became formalised, women were increasingly excluded. Henry VIII made a point of this in his 1540 charter forming the Company of Barber Surgeons, forerunner of the Royal College of Surgeons, in which it was decreed “No carpenter, smith, weaver or women shall practice surgery.”
By the mid-19th century, more women were demanding entry to medical school. The British Medical Journal at the time declared: “It is high time that this unnatural and preposterous attempt ... to establish a race of feminine doctors should be exploded.” Men expressed concerns that exposure to gore might pose a risk to delicate female health, apparently oblivious that women deal with blood on a monthly basis.
The first world war allowed women to take up posts in hospitals that would ordinarily have been occupied by men. But despite their competence, female physicians still faced major career obstacles in the interwar period, including discrimination on the basis of their marital status. In 1948, the educational reforms that came with the inauguration of the NHS required that a “reasonable proportion” of medical students were female.

Continue reading article by Farrah Jarral here at The Guardian

Australian Woman Head of Knighthood Order

After 20 years as a dame of the Queensland chapter of the legendary Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, Dr Monica Thomson adds a black cape and a gold mantilla to her hooded robes to distinguish herself as the new chapter leader.
Her robes were blessed during the installation by Brisbane Archbishop Mark Coleridge. “I am very proud to be the first woman in Australia, and the seventh worldwide,” Dr Thomson, 65, mother of three sons and grandmother of eight, said. “I was one of the original members when our chapter was formed and I hope to carry on the good work during my term as lieutenant.”
Knights and dames of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre are devoted to building up the faith and practice among members, and sustaining the spiritual, charitable, and social works of the Church in the Holy Land including Israel, Palestine, and Jordan.
In 1888, Pope Leo XIII authorised the order to give women similar honours to men.

Read rest of article here at The Record

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Victoria Woodhull - Candidate For US President

From: The Times Leader:
Nearly a century and a half before Hillary Clinton, a fiery activist from Ohio became the first woman nominated for U.S. president.
Victoria Woodhull’s varied and colorful life makes her difficult to pigeonhole. The suffragist, medium, businesswoman, stockbroker and newspaper publisher was “Mrs. Satan” to some, a visionary champion of women’s and children’s rights to others.
She rode motorcycles, preached “free love” and followed the guidance of an ancient Greek orator she believed had presented himself to her as a spirit guide.
The Equal Rights Party nominated Woodhull to face incumbent Republican Ulysses S. Grant in 1872 and Democrat Horace Greeley, nearly 50 years before women had the right to vote. At 34, she was a few months shy of the required age, but most historians still view her nomination and run as the first.
Woodhull lost, of course, but by how much is unclear.

Read rest of article here at The Times Leader

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Ancient tombs in Peru hint at human sacrifice

Archaeologists find ancient tombs in Peru hinting at human sacrifice | Science | The Guardian

Archaeologists in Peru have found more than a dozen tombs suggesting human sacrifice at sprawling ruins on the northern coast, a seat of power for three ancient cultures and the possible center of a pre-Inca legend.

At Chotuna-Chornancap, a coastal ruin complex in the arid valleys far north of Lima, archaeologists with Peru’s ministry of culture found more than 17 graves dating to at least the 15th century.

“There is at least one fairly high-status tomb,” said Haagen Klaus, a bioarchaeologist at George Mason University has worked at Chotuna-Chornancap before. Klaus told the Guardian that he hopes to analyze the new finds, discovered by the ruins of a temple, to confirm whether the victims were sacrificed.

“It’s not unusual that sacrifices are made to those individuals, sometimes during the funeral or even years or generations afterward,” he said. “But we can see that a number of the individuals that were buried were children – and that does fit into the larger pattern of ritual sacrifice.”
Continue reading article here at The Guardian and also at Seeker

An obituary 1,700 years old has been translated

An obituary 1,700 years old has been translated - CNN.com

A 1,700-year-old obituary, which is unlike anything researchers say they have seen before, has finally been translated. The inscription, written in ancient Greek on a small limestone tablet reveals a woman's name, her religion and what she was like as a person.

Lincoln H. Blumell, who specializes in ancient scripture at Utah's Brigham Young University, translated the epitaph. Plucked from Egypt, the document had been sitting in the Rare Books Department at the University of Utah's J Willard Marriott Library since it was donated in 1989. It commemorates a woman named Helene who cared for and loved orphans.
In peace and blessing Ama Helene, a Jew, who loves the orphans, [died]. For about 60 years her path was one of mercy and blessing; on it she prospered.

Read more here at: CNN online edition

Women in History - All China Women's Federation

Women in History - All China Women's Federation
Series of articles of women who have made an impact on the history of China throughout the ages.  Link forms part of the Women of China website.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

What Not To Wear: A Short History Of Regulating Female Dress

What Not To Wear: A Short History Of Regulating Female Dress From Ancient Sparta To The Burkini

 “Let’s keep in mind that it is no more freeing to tell a woman what she can wear than to tell her what she can’t.”
Few can deny that the various burkini bans put in place by towns on the French Riviera this summer have become symbolic of thecountry’s struggle over “secular identity.” The bans have seemed particularly odd to Italian beachgoers and others around the world, who have pointed out that nuns are often seen on Italian beaches in their habit. Despite the French Conseil d’Etat’s suspension of the burkini ban, local mayors continue to say they will enforce the dress code. Cogolin Mayor Marc Etienne Lansade told CNN, ”if you don’t want to live the way we do, don’t come...If you are accepted in Rome — do like Romans do.”  As it turns out, there is an ancient history of telling women what they can and cannot wear as a means of controlling a community’s political message.

Continue reading article here at Forbes dot com

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Joan of Arc ring stays in France

Joan of Arc ring stays in France after appeal to Queen | World news | The Guardian

A ring believed to have belonged to Joan of Arc has gone on display in France after its new owners made an appeal to the Queen to keep it out of the hands of its historic rival across the Channel.
French historical theme park Le Puy du Fou bought the 15th-century gold-plated silver ring at auction in London in February for £300,000 but was told after it had arrived in France that it had not obtained the necessary export licence for a historical artefact.

Arts Council England, which oversees the export regulations, said the ring should be returned to Britain.

Puy du Fou president Nicolas de Villiers, whose father Philippe, a French politician, founded the theme park, said there had never been any question of returning the ring.

Continue reading rest of article here ->> Australian Edition of The Guardian

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Pherenike of Rhodes

Pherenike of Rhodes: The Ancient Greek Mom Who Risked All to Guarantee Her Son's Olympic Glory - The Pappas Post

The determination of the Greek mother is, perhaps, best exemplified in the story of Pherenike, a proud ancient version of the modern-day soccer mom, who watched her children grow into strong athletes— all the way to Olympic glory.

Against all of the rules that barred women from participating in any way, shape or form during the Olympics, she became her son’s trainer and took him all the way to the 94th Olympiad of 404 BC where she donned a male trainer’s tunic and disguised her face to look more manly.

She risked her own life while doing this as women caught at or even near Olympia during the sacred rituals and athletic competitions, were thrown off the top of a hill and into a river to their deaths.

In his boxing match, Peisirodos did his family proud, and won Olympic laurels— the ancient equivalent to a Gold Medal. Pherenike was ecstatic and lost in the excitement of the moment, leapt into the ring to congratulate her son.
Read more of the story of Pherenike of Rhodes here and at Ancient Olympics

Search for Stirling's lost Iron Age roundhouse

Search for Stirling's lost Iron Age roundhouse - BBC News
An archaeologist whose research was ignored because she was a woman is being honoured in a new project set up to rediscover one of her key finds.
Christian Maclagan investigated the remains of an Iron Age roundhouse in her home town of Stirling in the 1870s.  Attitudes towards women at the time meant her academic paper on the broch structure was only accepted after it was transcribed by a man.
A small team of enthusiasts plan to search for the 2,000-year-old house  They have dubbed their project as a search for "the broch sexism lost".
Since Maclagan's discovery of the Livilands broch the site is thought to have been buried during the landscaping of a garden in Wester Livilands in Stirling. There is also an Easter Livilands in Stirling, but the other location is thought to be the most likely site of the lost ruins.

Heraean Games: Female Olympics

When Ancient Greece Banned Women From Olympics, They Started Their Own | Atlas Obscura

Much like their modern counterpart, the Olympic Games in ancient Greece wasn't exactly a level playing field for women. It's true that women of all ages were allowed to enjoy the festivities and exhilarating athletic events in cities throughout the Peloponnese states, including Delos and Athens. But the Games in Olympia in the land of Elis—the city where the Olympics originated—retained its traditional, sacred ban of women. Elis decreed that if a married woman (unmarried women could watch) was caught present at the Olympic Games she would be cast down from Mount Typaeum and into the river flowing below, according to Greek geographer and travel writer Pausanias.

During these ancient times, women lived much shorter lives, were excluded from political decision-making and religious rites, and were forced into early marriages after giving birth to several children. Despite the societal inequalities and oppression, women in Greece wanted to play—so they started their own Olympics called the Heraean Games.

“Every fourth year,” Pausanias wrote in 175 A.D., “there is woven for Hera a robe by the Sixteen women, and the same also hold games called Heraea.”
Read More here: Atlas Obscura

Ancient Cahokia ‘America’s first city’

Almost 50 years ago, archaeologists excavating an ancient city just outside of St. Louis discovered a mass burial site with an unusual central feature – two bodies arranged atop a bed of beads, with several other bodies encircling them.
It was once thought that the elaborate ‘beaded burial’ structure at Cahokia was built as a monument to male power – but now, researchers suggest this is not the case.
A new analysis of the remains reveals that one of these central bodies is actually female, and researchers say the discovery of similar male-female pairs and the remains of a child indicates that women played an important role in society.
In the new study, published to the journal American Antiquity, researchers with the Illinois State Archaeological Survey at the University of Illinois and colleagues found that there are both male and female remains buried at the site of the Native American city, Cahokia. 
Cahokia is said to be North America's first city, and is the largest pre-Columbian settlement north of Mexico. 

Read More: 

Sunday, August 7, 2016

The mystery of the Roman ‘princess’

How we solved the mystery of the Roman ‘princess’ | History Extra

Julian Richards returns to one of the most intriguing cases featured over a decade ago in the BBC’s Meet the Ancestors archaeology series, and discovers that this ancestor has a more remarkable background than he imagined.  
This article was first published in the April 2012 issue of BBC History Magazine. 

One of the most absorbing of those original discoveries was the so-called ‘Roman princess’ who emerged from an excavation at Spitalfields in the east end of London in 1999. The Museum of London archaeology team was digging a huge medieval cemetery that had grown up around the monastic hospital that gave its name to this part of London. But as well as thousands of medieval burials there were also some of Roman date.
Read rest of article here at History Extra

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Facial reconstruction made of Bronze Age woman 'Ava'

Facial reconstruction made of Bronze Age woman 'Ava' - BBC News
A facial reconstruction has been made of a young woman who died more than 3,700 years ago.  The woman's bones, including a skull and teeth, were discovered at Achavanich in Caithness in 1987.  Known as "Ava", an abbreviation of Achavanich, she is the subject of a long-term research project managed by archaeologist Maya Hoole.
Forensic artist Hew Morrison, a graduate of the University of Dundee, created the reconstruction.  Ava's remains, along with other artefacts found with her, are held in the care of Caithness Horizons museum in Thurso.  Unusually, the Bronze Age woman was buried in a pit dug into solid rock and her skull is an abnormal shape which some suggest was the result of deliberate binding.
Continue reading here at BBC News

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Archaeologists Unearth Thracian Princess Grave

Archaeologists Unearth Thracian Princess Grave Rich with Jewelry and Mythic Meaning | Ancient Origins
The remains of an ancient Thracian noblewoman that was ritually dismembered has been unearthed along with bronze and silver jewelry buried with her in a rock tomb in the Rhodope Mountains in Bulgaria.

Researchers are speculating the “Thracian princess,” as she is being called, was torn apart after death during ceremonies linked to the Orphic mysteries about 2,300 years ago. Dismemberment was not a mark of disfavor but rather an honor accorded to Thracian nobility and clerics.

The woman had a Greek silver coin that was possibly placed under her tongue as an obol or offering to Charon, the mythical figure of Greece, Rome and Thrace who ferried the dead across the rivers Styx and Acheron into their afterlife in Hades.

The body of the woman was in five pieces with her skull propped up on two rocks and sitting on a silver tiara, says the blog Archaeology in Bulgaria. The ancient people hewed her grave into the rock of the mountains. The archaeologist who discovered the burial, Assistant Professor Lyubin Leshtakov of the National Institute and Museum of Archaeology in Sofia, speculates there may be a necropolis or rock mausoleum there and hopes to find more graves, the blog states.
Continue reading entire article at Ancient Origins

Monday, July 11, 2016

Skeleton of woman with jewels in her teeth

Skeleton of 1,600-year-old woman with jewels in her TEETH found in Mexican burial ground | Daily Mail Online

Decorating teeth with jewels may be popular among some groups today, but it seems the idea was around in Mexico more than a thousand years ago.

Archaeologists have discovered the skeleton of an upper-class woman whose skull was intentionally deformed and her teeth encrusted with mineral stones.

The type of jewels found in her teeth show the woman was foreign to the region, and her skeleton was more deformed than any found before. 

The body was discovered near Mexico's ancient ruins of Teotihuacan, at a town called San Juan Evangelista.

The woman, between 35 and 40 years old when she died, was buried with 19 jars that served as offerings, the National Anthropology and History Institute said.

Her cranium was elongated by being compressed in a 'very extreme' manner - a technique commonly used in the southern part of Mesoamerica, not the central region where she was found, the institute said.
Continue reading article at Daily Mail Australia

Meet the feminist pioneers who helped shape Central Australia

Meet the feminist pioneers who helped shape Central Australia - ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
Life in Central Australia is a tough, isolated existence, and for women in decades past confined by the gender roles of their era, the challenges were enormous.

Bringing up children, trying to cook nutritious meals, and running households thousands of kilometres from family and friends meant these women had to make the most of what was available to them.

The concept of feminism, as we know it today, was not one society recognised, but these tenacious and resilient pioneers certainly left their mark.

ABC Local Radio spoke to family members and others who have been touched by the legacy of these remarkable women.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

'The World's Oldest Profession'

'The World's Oldest Profession' May Not Be What You Think

Next to prostitution, wet-nursing (being hired to breastfeed another woman’s child) is perhaps one of the world’s oldest professions for women; nearly every advanced civilization employed some version of it. There are countless examples: a Sumerian lullaby from 3000 BC makes mention of a nursemaid suckling; King Tut built a lavish tomb to honor his own wet nurse; Islamic law views two children having suckled milk from the same woman as a lifelong form of kinship equal to that of a blood relative; ancient Romans could bring their hungry infants to the Columna Lactaria for a nursing; and in the medieval kingdom of Castile, wet nurses for royal children were hired for one or two decades and became governesses after weaning.

Continue reading Huffington Post article by Jennifer Grayson

Unique Tomb of Viking Power Couple

Unique Tomb Found in Denmark Contains Remains of Viking Power Couple - History in the Headlines
A large burial ground located at Hårup in southwest Denmark is the site of the latest striking find from the Viking world. The wooden building, originally discovered in 2012 by engineers building a highway, was later identified as a 10th-century Viking tomb known as a dødehus (death house). Judging from the grave markings and items found with the remains, archaeologists have concluded that the man and woman buried in the tomb were likely noble–or at least highly distinguished–and had international connections.

The unique wooden structure found in Hårup and identified as a Viking dødehus, or death house, measures some 13 by 42 feet and contains three graves dating to 950 A.D. In the main part of the building, archaeologists found the remains of a man and a woman; the third grave, which appears to have been added later, contained the remains of a second man.
Read More at HISTORY

Women Rulers of the Arab & Muslim World

Women Rulers of the Arab & Muslim World
From Indonesia to Pakistan, Kyrgyzstan to Nigeria, Senegal to Turkey, it is not particularly rare in our own times for women in Muslim-majority countries to be appointed and elected to high offices—including heads of state. Nor has it ever been.

Stretching back more than 14 centuries to the advent of Islam, women have held positions among many ruling elites, from malikas, or queens, to powerful advisors. Some ascended to rule in their own right; others rose as regents for incapacitated husbands or male successors yet too young for a throne. Some proved insightful administrators, courageous military commanders or both; others differed little from equally flawed male potentates who sowed the seeds of their own downfalls.

Read more here from Tom Verde: Khayzuran & Zubayda , Radiyya bint Iltutmish , Shajarat Al-Durr

The Radium Girls

The Radium Girls documents the war women factory workers health battle | Life | Life
It was the miracle of the age, the secret of vibrant health, the magic formula for a brighter life. It turned darkness into light. It was liquid sunshine. Radium, discovered by Marie and Pierre Curie in December, 1898. It seemed the most exciting element imaginable. It was also one of the most dangerous. It didn’t take long to become a widely available sensation.

Who would not want a watch you could see in the dark? And what young woman doing low-paid clerical work in a boring office would not want to enhance her pay packet and status with a skilled job in a company riding the crest of the luminous wave.

To work at the Radium Luminous Materials Corporation in Newark, New Jersey, was to be part of something special.

While the company’s scientist owner laboured away in his laboratory exploring new ways of exploiting radium, the women were working with maximum speed applying precious radium to the hands and faces of watches, helping feed a demand that was nighon insatiable.

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