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  Home: Features: Middle Ages in the News: 1999 Bookmark and Share

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Below you will find 32 items from around the world on many different topics in the news concerning the Middle Ages. These might range from obituaries of great scholars of the period to articles about the last efforts to preserve a medieval barn. The Middle Ages comes up quite regularly in the news and so we will aim to bring you the latest. To help with that we have also set up two methods for you to get these items:

Medieval Miracles Shrine Restored
A holy shrine in south Wales - said to be the centre of miracles since the medieval period - is to be renovated and restored.
Source: BBC News       Date: 16 Dec 1999

The Vikings Have Landed (Again)
A replica of a vessel Leif Eriksson sailed 1,000 years ago completed an 87-day voyage from Greenland to Canada, landing Tuesday morning at the tip of Newfoundland's Great Northern Peninsula.
Source: CBS News       Date: 13 Dec 1999

Professor Leaves Literary Legacy
The distinguished Welsh writer and scholar Professor Gwyn Jones CBE has died, aged 92. Born the son of a miner in Blackwood in 1907, he made his name as a literary historian and writer, producing several highly respected books.
Source: BBC News       Date: 10 Dec 1999

Glyndwr Captures Votes in International Poll
Welsh hero Owain Glyndwr has been named in a Top Ten Makers of the Millennium poll. The fourteenth-century rebel leader is featured in a Sunday Times poll and is ranked seventh above Sir Isaac Newton and Abraham Lincoln.
Source: BBC News       Date: 29 Nov 1999

Assisi Basilica Reopens
The Basilica of St Francis in Assisi has reopened its doors to the public for the first time since its roof collapsed during an earthquake in September 1997. The Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Angelo Sodano, presided over a solemn mass of rededication in the presence of Italian President Carlo Azeglio Ciampi, and hundreds of engineers, building workers and art restorers.
Source: BBC News       Date: 28 Nov 1999

In Pictures: Basilica Reopened
The Basilica of St Francis in Assisi has been restored after its roof collapsed during an earthquake in 1997. The restoration and reconstruction of the 700-year-old church cost more than $37m.
Source: BBC News       Date: 28 Nov 1999

Restoring the Basilica
More than 600 stone carvers, engineers, masons, and volunteers have laboured to repair the vaulted roof and restore fresco paintings of the Basilica of St Francis in Assisi. The Basilica, built shortly after the death of Saint Francis in 1223, is one of Italy's major Roman Catholic shrines and a jewel of mediaeval art and architecture.
Source: BBC News       Date: 28 Nov 1999

MP Demands Return of Glyndwr Letter
A Labour MP is calling for the return to Wales of artefacts belonging to Welsh hero Owain Glyndwr. Paul Flynn, the Labour MP for Newport West, has tabled a Commons motion calling for the Pennal Letter and Seal of Owain Glyndwr to be returned from France.
Source: BBC News       Date: 18 Nov 1999

Glyndwr's Secret Could be Revealed
Scientists could be on the verge of an exciting breakthrough in discovering the resting place of Welsh legend Owain Glyndwr. On the eve of the 600th anniversary of Glyndwr announcing an independent Wales and establishing the first parliament in Wales, the latest technology is being employed to find his burial site.
Source: BBC News       Date: 4 Nov 1999

Anglo-Saxon Village Uncovered
Archaeologists say they have made a major discovery by unearthing the remains of an Anglo-Saxon village. Experts believe the settlement found near Ely, Cambridgeshire, was the village of Cratendune, known to have existed in the 11th Century.
Source: BBC News       Date: 2 Nov 1999

Teenager Leads Castle Preservation Campaign
A 14-year-old boy who wants to grow up to become a historian is leading a personal campaign to save a Welsh castle. Mark Baker, who suffers from a bone disease, will hand over a book he has written about Gwrych Castle to Conservative leader William Hague.
Source: BBC News       Date: 27 Oct 1999

Bright Look for Ancient Castle
One of the biggest restoration projects in the UK, the Great Hall of Stirling Castle, has finally been completed after nearly 10 years. The castle's owner, Historic Scotland, is unveiling the results of the £8.5m project, which has been painstakingly carried out with the help of ancient records. One aspect of the facelift, the hall's bright yellow exterior, has already been criticised.
Source: BBC News       Date: 19 Oct 1999

Basilica Gets Quake Protector
Technology used to straighten spectacles and receive mobile phone signals is being used to prevent earthquake damage. Engineers working on repairs to the Basilica of St Francis of Assisi hope the new approach will protect the shrine from future earthquakes.
Source: BBC News       Date: 25 Sep 1999

Bubonic Plague 'Could Return to the UK'
Source: BBC News       Date: 24 Sep 1999

Shuttle Reveals Island's Secrets
Space Shuttle technology has been used to uncover details of life on a Scottish island in the 12th century. Researchers from Edinburgh University, with the aid of data from the shuttle, discovered an archaeological site on the Hebridean Island of Islay.
Source: BBC News       Date: 21 Sep 1999

Call for Holiday to Honour Glyndwr
The date of 16 September could be celebrated as a national holiday if the Wales Heritage Campaign is successful. The campaign is calling on people to join its efforts to make it a day honouring Welsh hero Owain Glyndwr.
Source: BBC News       Date: 15 Sep 1999

Viking Remains Uncovered in Wales
Archaeologists have found a thousand-year-old settlement on farm land in north Wales. The find at Llanbedrgoch on Anglesey includes five bodies, artefacts and the remains of several buildings dating back to the Viking age. The National Museum of Wales said the site was of international significance.
Source: BBC News       Date: 12 Sep 1999

Weird Wires to Protect Basilica
Metal wires which can stretch and then snap back like elastic will soon be added to the Basilica of St Francis of Assisi to protect it from future earthquakes. The historic Italian shrine was severely damaged by earthquakes in 1997, killing two monks and destroying priceless frescos by Giotto.
Source: BBC News       Date: 10 Sep 1999

Anglo-Saxon Remains an Option
Anglo-Saxon history is to stay on the A level syllabus, following a public outcry at the revelation that "1066 and all that" had become old hat. A levels in Anglo-Saxon were to have been dropped because of a lack of interest from pupils. But now the largest English exam board, OCR, has decided to re-instate the subject.
Source: BBC News       Date: 17 Aug 1999

Digging Deep for King Alfred
Archaeologists have begun their dig for the remains of Alfred the Great, the first King of England, near a leisure-centre car park. The remains of the 9th Century King are thought to lie at the site of Hyde Abbey, in Winchester, Hampshire. This is located near a leisure centre in the city.
Source: BBC News       Date: 20 Jul 1999

'Treasure Islands' For Sale
A world famous chain of islands off the west coast of Scotland, where priceless treasure is said to be buried, has gone on the market. The Treshnish Isles are thought to be where the monks of Iona buried their library for safety in the wake of the Reformation of 1560.
Source: BBC News       Date: 16 Jul 1999

Bitter Memories of Battle of Kosovo
Religious ceremonies have been taking place to mark the anniversary of the Battle of Kosovo Polje, but most Serbs are marking the occasion hesitantly, if at all. The head of the Serbian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Pavle, led a memorial service at a 14th century monastry at Gracanica, before another ceremony at the Kosovo battle site itself, called the Field of Blackbirds.
Source: BBC News       Date: 28 Jun 1999

Ship Pulled by Norse Power
Hundreds of Shetland islanders have been lending their muscle power in the name of research into the life and times of the Vikings. They helped to move a replica eight-tonne Viking trading ship from sea onto land to see how the Scandanavians would have attempted such a feat 1,000 years ago.
Source: BBC News       Date: 28 Jun 1999

Plastic Kings Plan Sparks Fury
The northern Spanish city of Burgos has always been associated with conflict. It was the home of the 11th Century Christian crusader, El Cid, who fought against the Moors and earlier this century, the home of General Franco's right-wing government during the Spanish civil war. But the battle being waged now is one of the most unusual so far.
Source: BBC News       Date: 24 May 1999

Medieval Cookbook for Sale
One of the world's oldest printed cookery books, which includes recipes for leftover hog and bear on the bone, is up for auction. The book, De Honesta Voluptate et Valetudine (On Right Pleasure and Good Health), was written in Latin by Italian physician Batholomaeus Platina in 1480. It is expected to fetch up to £6,000.
Source: BBC News       Date: 12 May 1999

Ancient Ethiopian Church Cross Recovered?
Reports from Ethiopia say the renowned Lalibella cross, stolen from a twelve-century rock-hewn church two years ago, has been found. A source at the Belgian embassy said the five-kilogram solid gold cross was in the possession of a Belgian collector and would be returned next week.
Source: BBC News       Date: 5 May 1999

Ancient Medical Manuscript Sold for $900,000
A rare eleventh-century Arabic copy of one of the most influential texts in the history of medicine has been sold in London for nearly nine-hundred-thousand dollars. It was bought by an anonymous private collector in tense bidding at an Islamic art auction.
Source: BBC News       Date: 22 Apr 1999

Conquest and Union
The new Welsh Assembly will see the first measure of self rule return to Wales since the 13th century. The English King Edward I defeated the last independent Welsh princedoms more than 700 years ago in 1283.
Source: BBC News       Date: 6 Apr 1999

Anglo-Saxon Goes Online
The Anglo-Saxons are taking to the Internet in an ambitious project involving a number of leading British universities. The universities of Oxford, Cambridge, King's College London and Manchester are among the partners in a major academic project to create a definitive online database for studying Anglo-Saxon writers.
Source: BBC News       Date: 19 Mar 1999

Battlefield Saved From Building
The site of the historic Battle of Tewkesbury has been saved from housing development. Environment Secretary John Prescott ruled that plans for more than 50 homes would have "irreversibly damaging impact" on the Gloucestershire site.
Source: BBC News       Date: 11 Mar 1999

Medieval Astronomer's Horoscope Discovered
A horoscope drawn by one of the greatest astronomers who ever lived has been rediscovered in California. The 400-year-old manuscript is by Johannes Kepler who, with his laws of planetary motion, laid the foundation for modern astronomy. It was found among a collection of astronomical papers in the archives of the University of California at Santa Cruz.
Source: BBC News       Date: 3 Mar 1999

Ancient Warrior Resurrected
The remains of a group of Anglo-Saxon warriors have been found at a burial site on the American military air base at Lakenheath in Suffolk, home to today's modern warriors. The warriors lived around the year 600AD, when the invaders from Europe were establishing kingdoms after battles with the ancient Britons.
Source: BBC News       Date: 7 Jan 1999


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