18 Stories

Boy Finds 3K-Year-Old Sword in River

The bronze relic could be from China's Shang or Zhou dynasty, experts say

(Newser) - Yang Junxi is living the dream of every geek with a metal detector—except he didn't even need a metal detector. The 11-year-old boy from China's Jiangsu province was playing next to the Laozhoulin River in early July when he decided to wash his hands. As he dunked... More »

Pope John Paul II's Blood Stolen

One of only 3 known vials taken from Italy church

(Newser) - A vial of Pope John Paul II's blood has been stolen ... by Satanists? The first part is fact, the second speculation. NBC News reports that the relic was taken on Saturday from the Church of San Pietro della Ienca, which is located in central Italy's Abruzzo region. Reuters... More »

Remnants of Buddha's Body Stolen

Golden urn was stolen from Cambodian shrine

(Newser) - A golden urn containing what are considered to be remnants of the Buddha's body has been stolen from its shrine near the Cambodian capital, officials today announced. The theft was apparently discovered Tuesday, when a guard found the lock to the shrine's door had been destroyed and the... More »

Saint's Heart Stolen From Dublin Cathedral

Preserved heart had been on display for 800 years

(Newser) - A thief has ripped the heart of Dublin's patron saint out of one of the city's cathedrals. The preserved heart of St. Laurence O'Toole, which had been on display in Christ Church Cathedral for 800 years, was stolen over the weekend, reports AP . The relic was kept... More »

Shroud of Turin Can't Be Fake

Researchers think you'd need lasers to reproduce it

(Newser) - The Shroud of Turin must be real rather than a medieval forgery, an Italian study has concluded, because the markings on it could not possibly have been created with medieval technology. Scientists tried to recreate the sepia image of a crucified man that graces the shroud, and found its physical... More »

Church Recovers Its Chunk of St. Anthony

Woman busted after 800-year-old relic recovered

(Newser) - A Catholic church in Long Beach has been reunited with its piece of the patron saint of missing things. The 780-year-old relic of St. Anthony of Padua, a sliver of bone encased in a gold and silver reliquary, was stolen earlier this week . Police found the relic displayed in the... More »

Did Vermont Man Have Piece of Christ's Cross?

Earl Frost charged with possessing a religious artifact

(Newser) - A Vermont man charged with possessing a stolen religious artifact dating back to the crucifixion of Jesus Christ remained held on $10,000 bail yesterday after pleading not guilty. "The Relic of the True Cross"—which Christians believe was actually part of the cross upon which Christ was... More »

800-Year-Old Relic Stolen From California Church

Relic of St. Anthony, patron saint of missing objects, is missing

(Newser) - Calling Saint Anthony of Padua: A relic of the patron saint of missing objects and lost causes has gone missing from a Catholic church in California. The relic was stolen from a cabinet in the church in Long Beach, where it had been on display to mark the 780th anniversary... More »

Filmmaker Claims to Have Jesus Crucifixion Nails

Archeologists are skeptical of filmmaker's claims

(Newser) - Filmmaker Simcha Jacobovici is convinced he’s found the actual nails used to nail Jesus to the cross—even if no one else is. In a new documentary entitled The Nails of the Cross, Jacobovici will lay out what he calls “the best archaeological argument ever made” that the... More »

Krakow Church's New Relic: Blood of John Paul II

Vial will be installed in altar following late pope's beatification

(Newser) - A vial holding the blood of Pope John Paul II will be installed in a Polish church as a relic, the AP reports. The vial will form part of the altar at a Krakow church due to open in May, the month of the late Polish pope's beatification. The city’... More »

Afghan Archeologists Uncover Buddhist Site

Appeal for foreign money to protect ancient relics

(Newser) - As Western and Afghan forces battle Taliban Islamists for control of Afghanistan, archaeologists have discovered major relics of the country's Buddhist past in an area south of Kabul. The artifacts date back at least to the 5th century AD, and possibly to the era before Christ. "There is a... More »

Museum Shows Off Galileo's Fingers

Body parts of scientist their top exhibit

(Newser) - Florence’s Galileo Museum will reopen this week with a prized, albeit mildly grisly, new exhibit: two fingers, a thumb, a tooth, and a vertebrae that supposedly belonged to the legendary scientist. According to the museum’s director, the body parts were taken off Galileo Galilei’s corpse by masons... More »

Thieves Grab Stolen Antiquities Exhibit

Recovered black-market items back on the black market

(Newser) - A museum exhibit featuring "Antiquities Theft in Israel" has become the victim of antiquities theft in Israel. Thieves broke into the museum in Ashdod, southern Israel, and stole the display of items recovered from the black market, the Telegraph reports. The antiquities theft squad that recovered the items, including... More »

Writing's on the Wall for the Chalkboard

Some still attached, but whiteboards now rule classrooms

(Newser) - If today’s kids don’t know what a record is, tomorrow’s won’t likely know what a chalkboard is, at least in the classroom. Whiteboards, without the lung- and computer-choking dust (to say nothing of their immunity to scratching nails) are taking over, with one supplier of both... More »

China Slams Auction of Looted Relics

Christie's denies request to halt sale of Beijing palace booty

(Newser) - A Christie's auction of two relics looted from Beijing's Summer Palace 150 years ago has infuriated China, the BBC reports. A statement from the country's cultural agency denounced the "illegal" sale and warned of unspecified consequences. The bronze rat and rabbit, seized by invading French and British troops, sold... More »

For Sale: Soviet Sub, Very Rusty

Cold War relic once used in Harrison Ford film is too costly to restore, RI museum says

(Newser) - The former Soviet submarine used in Harrison Ford’s film K-19: The Widowmaker may be sunk for good. The cruise-missile sub, which served as a floating museum in a Rhode Island river until it foundered in a 2007 storm, will be sold for scrap if no one buys it by... More »

Archaeologists Unearth Part of Roman Throne

First finding of its kind is decorated with ivory bas-reliefs of gods

(Newser) - Archaeologists have discovered the remains of a Roman throne in the volcanic ash that buried the city of Herculaneum when Mount Vesuvius erupted in the year 79. Scientists unearthed two legs and the back of a throne, the first ever found. The piece was decorated with ivory bas-reliefs of ancient... More »

Pope's Robe Shredded For Relics

100,000 fragments available online for a donation

(Newser) - A white robe worn by Pope John Paul II has been cut into 100,000 tiny fragments which are being distributed for donations as religious relics to aid prayer and achieve miracles, reports the London Times. The operation is run by the Diocese of Rome and is causing concern in... More »

18 Stories