Radar pinpoints tomb of King Edward the Confessor.


Blackleaf
#1
The tomb of Edward the Confessor, English king and England's first ever saint, has been located.

Radar pinpoints tomb of King Edward the Confessor
By Jonathan Petre, Religion Correspondent





The ancient tomb of Edward the Confessor, one of the most revered of British saints, has been discovered under Westminster Abbey 1,000 years after his birth.

The original burial chamber of the Anglo-Saxon king, who died in 1066, months before the invasion of William the Conqueror, was revealed by archaeologists using the latest radar technology.

The existence of a number of royal tombs dating back to the 13th and 14th century was also discovered beneath the abbey, the venue for nearly all coronations since 1066.

The forgotten, sub-terranean chambers were located during conservation work on the abbey's medieval Cosmati mosaic pavement around the high altar.

Dr Warwick Rodwell, the abbey's consultant archaeologist, said the find was "extraordinarily exciting".

Until now archaeologists had assumed that the original tomb of Edward the Confessor was near the present high altar, because medieval records referred to him being buried there. It has now emerged, however, that the position of the altar was moved by Henry III in the mid 13th century. The archaeologists have located the original tomb 10 feet behind the present altar, under the shrine built by Henry III in 1269, which still contains the remains of the saint.



"We have never been able to locate the original tomb of Edward until now," said Dr Rodwell. "The Victorians tried to find out more about what tombs were under here, but they simply did not have the technology to do it. The mystery around the location of the crypt has been running for many years. Every day brings new insights and new facts." Dr Rodwell said an archaeological team had been examining the construction of the Cosmati pavement, which dates from 1268, using a very high-frequency radar to a depth of about 20 inches. The power of the radar was intensified to examine deeper sections of the pavement.

"Little did we expect that, by using a lower frequency radar, we would find chambers, vaults and foundations of such fascinating historical interest and dating back to the very founding of the abbey, over a millennium ago," said Dr Rodwell.

There are no plans to excavate the tomb because any such work would destroy the medieval pavement.

The discovery, made in October, has delighted the abbey as it has been marking Edward the Confessor's anniversary with a series of events.

Although not among the better known kings - his reign was relatively peaceful - his presence in British history has endured.

The principal royal crown is still called St Edward's crown, and the Coronation Chair is sometimes called St Edward's chair, even though both were made long after his death.

The son of Ethelred the Unready and Emma, the daughter of Richard I of Normandy, his family was exiled to Normandy after the Danish invasion of 1013 and he was largely educated there.

When his half brother, Hardecanute, died in 1042, he was acclaimed king. On his death he was succeeded by Harold, who was killed at the Battle of Hastings nine months later.

Edward's reputation for sanctity grew after the Norman conquest, and he was canonised by Pope Alexander III in 1161.

Edward was patron saint of England for more than four centuries, until 1415 when he was replaced by St George.

The archaeological team is now preparing further investigations to establish the purpose, history and content of the main tomb and the other chambers, graves and coffins they have found.

The Dean of Westminster, the Very Rev Wesley Carr, said: "It is another reminder of how abbey history and humanity are packed together."

telegraph.co.uk
 
Finder
#2
Well you'd think since British archaeologist were more then happy to damage and ruin ancient, Greek, Roman and Eygption ruins they would have a problem with their own. *shrugs* To bad they couldn't find away to cause minimal damage.
 
Blackleaf
#3
If you think the Greeks are gonna get the Elgin marbles back, you've got another thing coming.
 
Finder
#4
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf

If you think the Greeks are gonna get the Elgin marbles back, you've got another thing coming.

I have mixed opinions about historic items stolen during imperalist days by any power. But I do think it's a little more clear if the nation the items were stolen from is stable and the government is democratic that the items properly should be returned.
 
fuzzylogix
#5
It seems that Edward was considered a saint mainly because he remained celibate. It perhaps is therefore appropriate that he is the patron saint of defective marriages and separated spouses.
 
Sassylassie
#6
lol that was hilarious.
 
Finder
#7
Quote: Originally Posted by Sassylassie

lol that was hilarious.


hmm you laugh, could this mean... you are a saint. too. =-D
 
Blackleaf
#8
Quote: Originally Posted by fuzzylogix

It seems that Edward was considered a saint mainly because he remained celibate. It perhaps is therefore appropriate that he is the patron saint of defective marriages and separated spouses.

Is that true? I never knew that.
 
Blackleaf
#9
Elgin marbles will NEVER be returned to Greece, says director of the British Museum.


28th January 2003.



The Elgin marbles will never be returned to Greece, even on loan, the director of the British Museum has told The Telegraph.

In a ruling which will infuriate the Greek authorities, Neil MacGregor - who took over as director of the museum last August - said that the marbles could "do most good" in their current home, where they are seen in a broader historical context. Mr MacGregor said that he wanted the Greek Government to accept instead a computer-generated version of what the 2,500-year-old marbles would look like on the Parthenon, from which they were removed between 1801 and 1804 by the 7th Earl of Elgin.

Greece first called for the return of the marbles in 1829 when it won independence from Turkey. The case was put to Harold Macmillan in 1961 and successive Greek governments have used diplomatic channels to exert pressure since then. Mr MacGregor's decision ends any hopes that the marbles could be loaned to the Greeks for the Athens Olympics next year and will outrage campaigners who hoped that his appointment marked a change in the museum's attitude to ownership of the friezes. Last year he became the first director of the museum to meet the British Committee for the Restitution of the Parthenon Marbles. This weekend, however, he announced that he was terminating "substantive discussions" with the group after one meeting. Mr MacGregor said: "I do not believe that there is a case for returning the marbles. It is a very happy result of history that half of these surviving fragments of these sculptures are in London. They have a purpose here because this is where they can do most good. The British Museum can situate the achievements of these Greek sculptures in the context of the wider ancient world."

Asked whether he was of the opinion that the artefacts should never return to Greece, Mr MacGregor said simply: "Yes." He added: "The British Museum is one of the great cultural achievements of mankind: it is very important that there is a place where all the world can store its achievements. Lots of people would not agree that there should be a special case for the Parthenon. It is an argument but not necessarily a fact. I personally don't see any difference between Greek visual culture and the visual culture of Italy and Holland, which is also spread around the world."

Mr MacGregor said that he hoped relations with the Greeks would be improved by his plans for a virtual reality reconstruction of the Parthenon. He has outlined the proposals in a letter to Prof Dimitris Pandermalis, the head of the Organisation for the Construction of the New Acropolis Museum, which is building a home for the marbles in anticipation of the sculptures being returned.

The reconstruction would involve taking several thousand photographs of the Parthenon as well as those objects which have been removed from the site and placed in museums around the world. The images would form the basis of a computer-generated model which would show what the ruined Parthenon would look like with all the pieces together. Mr MacGregor said: "At the moment there is not very much middle ground between the two sides on the subject of the marbles and it is tiresome for everyone to keep saying the same things. The Parthenon can never be reconstructed, so let's try and put together what's left of it virtually." His comments infuriated members of the British Committee for the Restitution of the Parthenon Marbles, who accused him of "duplicity". Prof Anthony Snodgrass, the chairman, said that the British Museum had been deliberately misleading about its contacts with Athens. Prof Snodgrass said: "I would only be happy with a virtual reality version if they were put in the British Museum as a replacement for the originals."

http://www.dailytelegraph.co.uk/

Greece must be the only country in the world that loses its marbles but let everyone know about it.
 
fuzzylogix
#10
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf

Quote: Originally Posted by fuzzylogix

It seems that Edward was considered a saint mainly because he remained celibate. It perhaps is therefore appropriate that he is the patron saint of defective marriages and separated spouses.

Is that true? I never knew that.

Yup, according to history, that is true. He was patron saint of England until replaced by St. George.
 
Finder
#11
Blackleaf, I understand the need for presivation, but you at least have to be able to see the Greeks side of the story and at least empathize with them. You don't have to agree as I am not sure if it matters where the historic artifact is as long as it is safe.