This Week In History News, May 28 – Jun. 3

Published June 2, 2023

Eighteenth-century sword sold for $17.4 million in London, ancient petroglyphs uncovered in Sweden, 2,500-year-old feces examined in Jerusalem.

After Selling For $17.4 Million, This Storied Blade Of An 18th-Century Sultan Is Now History’s Most Valuable Sword

Tipu Sultan Sword And Sheath

BonhamsA fierce opponent of British colonization, Tipu Sultan was constantly ready for battle to the point that he slept with this very sword right by his side every night.

Known as the “Tiger of Mysore,” Indian ruler Tipu Sultan fought off British colonialists time and again throughout his reign in the 1780s and ’90s. All the while, he went to sleep each night right next to the most storied symbol of his military might: the storied “sword of the ruler.”

Constructed with legendary Wootz steel, said to be the hardest in the world, this sword became famous for being able to slice right through enemy armor — so when British forces finally killed Tipu Sultan in battle at Seringapatam in 1799, they took the sword and presented it to Major General David Baird as a trophy.

Now, the “sword of the ruler” has just become the most valuable blade in history after selling at auction in London for an astonishing $17.4 million.

Learn more about this mythic blade here.

2,700-Year-Old Petroglyphs Depicting People, Ships, And Animals Discovered Under A Mossy Rock In Sweden

Bohuslän Petroglyphs

Foundation for Documentation of Bohuslän’s Rock CarvingsThe ancient etchings were created 2,700 years ago in Bohuslän, an area known for its abundance of rock carvings.

Swedish archaeologists recently uncovered a series of around 40 petroglyphs — rock carvings made by chipping at the surface — hidden beneath layers of moss on the side of a cliff face that was once part of an island 2,700 years ago.

Dig deeper in this report.

Archaeologists Find 2,500-Year-Old Poop In Jerusalem Toilets — And It Contains The Oldest Evidence Of Dysentery Parasites

Ancient Toilet In Jerusalem

Ya’akov BilligThe cesspits were found beneath ancient stone toilets in Jerusalem, which likely belonged to Iron Age elites.

Poop samples from two ancient toilets in Jerusalem revealed the earliest known evidence of a parasite that causes “traveler’s diarrhea,” according to a new study. The poop in question is 2,500 years old.

The infection, also known as dysentery, is often caused by a microscopic parasite called Giardia duodenalis. The end result is horribly bloody diarrhea, often accompanied by abdominal cramps and a fever.

Read on here.

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A New York-based publisher established in 2010, All That's Interesting brings together subject-level experts in history, true crime, and science to share stories that illuminate our world.