John the Baptist Found—in Bulgaria
Or so claim archaeologists of reliquary found last week
By Jane Yager,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 4, 2010 8:12 AM CDT
John the Baptist   (Shutter Stock)

(Newser) – Archaeologists excavating the site of a 5th-century monastery on a Black Sea island claim they've found remains of John the Baptist. A reliquary found last week at the site on Sveti Ivan contains fragments of a skull, a hand, and a tooth. Archaeologists cite a Greek inscription on the reliquary referring to June 24, the date when Christians celebrate John the Baptist's birth, as evidence the remains are his.

The monastery on the island where the remains were found was dedicated to John the Baptist. The newly discovered reliquary is made of alabaster and is estimated to date from the middle of the 5th century, CNN reports. Further testing will be carried out on the relics, which are believed to have been donated to the monastery by the Byzantine Church.