Yesterday King Herod, Today Copernicus

Yesterday I read a fascinating report about how archaeologists may have found the tomb of King Herod:

On the basis of a study of the architectural elements uncovered at the site, the researchers have been able to determine that the mausoleum, among the remains of which Herod’s sarcophagus was found, was a lavish two-story structure with a concave-conical roof, about 25 meters high — a structure fully appropriate to Herod’s status and taste. The excavations there have also yielded many fragments of two additional sarcophagi, which the researchers estimate to have been members of Herod’s family.

There are some photos of the dig on this slow-loading FTP site.

And today, scientists confirmed that they’d identified the remains of 16th-century astronomer Copernicus.

Researchers said Thursday they have identified the remains of Nicolaus Copernicus by comparing DNA from a skeleton and hair retrieved from one of the 16th-century astronomer’s books.

The findings could put an end to centuries of speculation about the exact resting spot of Copernicus, a priest and astronomer whose theories identified the Sun, not the Earth, as the center of the universe.

A hair from one of his books? That is seriously CSI. If you follow the link, they’ve got a ‘facial forensic reconstruction’ of the man. He looks a little cross-eyed.

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