Image: Portable Antiquities Scheme

April Fool!

Did we catch you out with our ‘breaking news’ about the earliest-known representation of the Easter Bunny?

Sadly this discovery only exists in our imaginations – but the artefact we featured is real, though in reality it  is a 2nd-3rd century Roman brooch  from Lincolnshire. You can read its entry on the Portable Antiquities Scheme database here.

In the spirit of April 1st, we’ve collected some of our favourite stories from other sources – links are below, though in case any are taken down at noon, we’ve included a little description too.

Medieval manuscript reveals pasta was invented in Norfolk
New analysis of Nennius’ Historia Brittonum suggests that pasta (referred to as dumplingas in the 9th century text)  was invented not in Italy, but in Norfolk – and recent archaeological discoveries have uncovered wheat-based food remains shaped into rudimentary letter forms.

Oyster shells were used by medieval  commuters, London archaeologists say
Punctured oyster shells recovered by the Thames Discovery Programme were a form of token used by medieval workers to travel across London, new documentary evidence suggests – they were known as  ostrum cartes.

 Bones of the original ‘Invicta’ horse, symbol of Kent, have been found by archaeologists
Horse bones excavated at Aylesford Priory have been identified as the remains of the animal that has been a symbol of Kent since the 4th century. Analysis of traces of its mane confirms that it was white.

2,000-year-old pasty found on the Devon-Cornwall border
The discovery of the ancient foodstuff near Calstock Roman Fort in the Tamar Valley means that experts are no nearer to determining which county can truly call itself the birthplace of the pasty. Dr Ian Lola suggests it may have been dropped by a Roman soldier.

More ancient food
Historic Scotland have announced the discovery of rare archaeological evidence of a ‘lesser spotted haggis’.

Search for Hitler’s missing testicle begins at the Royal Albert Hall
Archaeologists hope geophysical surveys will confirm whether or not the famous song is true.

Ancient technology in a Jersey coin hoard
Ongoing conservation work has discovered ancient technology hidden amongst the mass of coins – a 3″ floppy disc.

Name change for the University of Leicester
To commemorate the discovery of Richard III’s remains by Leicester archaeologists, the university is expected to change its name to King Richard University.

Richard III theme park to open outside Leicester  
Rides will  include Bosworth bumper cars and a Princes in the Tower ghost train.

A roof and double glazing to be installed at Stonehenge  
‘Improvements’ are being made to the ancient monument to help protect it from harmful sun’s rays.

And the best of the (non-archaeological) rest:

National Museums Scotland’s April ‘object of the month’ is a new species of furry trout.

‘Digasaurus Rex’ dinosaur skeleton found during construction of a golf course near Rocester.

Phoenix egg being recorded at the Natural History Museum.

Fossilised footprint of an unknown medieval species found in East Kilbride.

New paper in  Nature confirms the existence of dragons.

CERN researchers announce new evidence that the Force is real.

Nelson’s Column to return to Norfolk

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