Archive for September, 2012

How To Tell If Myths Ring True…

The character Jac L’Etoile in The Book of Lost Fragrances studies mythology – it is her life’s work to find the truth behind myths. She would be extremely interested in the following article from the Sunday Review:




If Achilles Used Facebook…


WHEN we pick up a mythological text like “The Iliad” or “Beowulf,” we like to imagine that the societies they describe existed. Even if the stories are fiction, we believe that they tell us something about ancient Greece or the Anglo-Saxons, and that some of the characters and events were based on reality.


Archaeological evidence suggests that at least some of the societies and events in such stories did exist. But is there other evidence, lurking perhaps within the ancient texts themselves?…


For the complete piece click here.





Scientists Declare Shroud of Turin Is Likely Authentic

The Shroud of Turin is one of the most fascinating objects on earth, and it received quite a bit of attention recently after Italian scientists suggested its authenticity…



Shroud Of Turin, Jesus’ Proposed Burial Cloth, Is Authentic, Italian Study Suggests



“A series of experiments conducted by Italian researchers indicate the Shroud of Turin is likely authentic, but the team has not yet reached a definite conclusion.


Decades of research on Jesus’ proposed burial cloth have revealed an array of conflicting ideas surrounding the shroud’s authenticity. However, researchers from Italy’s National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development believe their findings undermine previous theories that the shroud was faked in the medieval period, the Telegraph reports. The new claim seems to be stirring controversy again, as many point to previous research to the contrary.


Last year scientists were able to replicate marks on the cloth using highly advanced ultraviolet techniques that weren’t available 2,000 years ago — or during the medieval times, for that matter.


Research in the 1980s suggests the image was “forged” on the cloth between 1260 and 1390, but scientists have determined the hypothesis was based on testing material from a patch likely used to to repair the cloth after a fire, the BBC reports.


Since the shroud and “all its facets” still cannot be replicated using today’s top-notch technology, researchers suggest it is impossible that the original image could have been created in either period….”


For the compete piece, and a video, click here.


The Case Of The Missing Madonna

Any reader of M.J.’s books is going to appreciate a real life art caper!



The Mysterious Tale Of The Stolen (And Possibly Returned) Renaissance Madonna By Lucas Cranach The Elder


Lucas Cranach the Elder, called “one of the strangest Renaissance artists in Germany” is back in the headlines after a few centuries at rest. His painting, “Madonna Under The Fir Tree,” has hung in a Polish cathedral for over 400 years. At least 60 of those years, however, the work was stolen and replaced with a fake. This summer the original was mysteriously returned, after negotiations between authorities and the church. Poland’s foreign minister Radoslaw Sikorski told the Art Newspaper: “The story of how the ‘Madonna under the Fire Tree’ was recovered reads like a crime novel.” However, historians and fans are now wondering if their beloved Madonna actually returned or if they are simply looking at a better forgery…


For the rest of the story click here.


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