History News January 2024

History Uncovered Episode 103:
History Happy Hour, January 2024: Golden-Tongued Mummies, A Victorian Cipher, And More

Published February 2, 2024

Join the History Uncovered podcast for a look at the most fascinating history news stories and historical anniversaries from January 2024.

We’ve covered a variety of interesting news stories this month, but there were a few that stood out above the rest. These include the discovery of a 19th-century dress with a mysterious coded note, two mummies in Egypt with golden tongues said to let them speak to the Lord of the Dead in the afterlife, an ancient wooden celestial calendar found in China, the shocking discovery of a cemetery in Wales with evidence of “graveside feasting,” and a sling bullet found in Spain that could reveal the location of Julius Caesar’s famous Battle of Munda.

Sling Bullet With Julius Caesar's Name

University of Salamanca/Zephyrus, XCI, 2023The lead bullet bearing the inscription of Julius Caesar’s name.

The sling bullet was inscribed with the letters “CAES,” suggesting it had belonged to a member of Caesar’s army. It was discovered near Montilla, Spain, which could mean that the famous Battle of Munda, in which Caesar’s forces conquered the armies of the sons of Pompey, was fought here.

The Battle of Munda, fought in 45 B.C.E., was a decisive victory for Caesar. The sons of Pompey, upset with Caesar’s increasingly dictatorial rule, rebelled against the Roman leader, sparking a civil war. The Battle of Munda put an end to that war — but for years, historians debated where, exactly, the battle was fought. Montilla has come up quite a few times in the discussion, but the discovery of this lead sling bullet provides more concrete evidence for this theory.

Fascinatingly, the Battle of Munda took place just one year before Caesar’s assassination — almost to the day. The Battle of Munda was fought on March 17, 45 B.C.E., and Caesar was assassinated on March 15, 44 B.C.E. at the Senate House in Rome.

Meanwhile, there were also several important historical anniversaries this month, including the assault on Nancy Kerrigan on January 6, 1994, the Treaty of Paris on January 14, 1784, the “Miracle on the Hudson” on January 15, 2009, the death of Chang and Eng Bunker on January 17, 1874, and the official release of the original Apple Macintosh on January 22, 1984.

Learn more about the music used in our podcast. History Uncovered is part of the Airwave Media network. Learn more about your ad choices by visiting megaphone.fm/adchoices.