The violin that was played as the Titanic sank in 1912 has gone on public display before it goes up for auction this weekend. It was played by Wallace Hartley, the band leader, who died along with 1,500 others as the ship went down. The guide price for the violin is £300,000, making it the single most valuable piece of Titanic memorabilia.
Diary of the German judge who hated Hitler to be published for the first time
The final months of the Second World War, as experienced by a German military judge who loathed the Nazi regime, are documented in a diary due to be published for the first time. Written by Werner Otto Müller-Hill, who worked in Germany’s military courts between 1940 and 1945, the diary records the conflict from the perspective of an individual who fully understood the historical significance of the events unfolding before him.
“Forbear wine and tobacco”: advice for 17th-century university freshers revealed
Young Cambridge scholars in the mid-17th century were urged to be “grave and sober”, moderate in dress and to avoid the evil and sin lurking in the streets of the city. That is according to a list of rules published for the first time in a paper by two Cambridge residents Dr Christopher Preston and Philip Oswald.
Senghenydd mining disaster remembered 100 years on
Britain’s worst ever mining disaster has been remembered a century after 439 miners and one rescuer lost their lives in an explosion at Senghenydd in South Wales. A new monument has been unveiled on the site of the old mine and a memorial garden opened to remember more than 5,000 miners killed in accidents across Wales since the 18th century.
First World War centenary plans unveiled by BBC
The BBC is to mark the centenary of the First World War with its biggest ever programming schedule, boasting more than 2,500 hours of television and radio. From 2014 to 2018 the BBC will feature documentaries, dramas and historical debates about the First World War, and establish a dedicated website where people will be able to learn how their hometown was affected by the conflict.
Dogs ‘adopted’ by Operation Dynamo troops
A number of animals were ‘adopted’ by retreating British troops during the ‘Miracle of Dunkirk’ in 1940, a new book by Clare Campbell reveals. As more than 300,000 Allied troops were evacuated from occupied Europe, dogs were cared for by young men afflicted with loneliness and longing for an affectionate companion.
Britons were eating frogs’ legs 8,000 years before the French
They’ve long been considered a French delicacy, but a new archeological dig in Wiltshire suggests frogs’ legs may have been first enjoyed in Britain. Among evidence of life in the eighth millennia BC, found at the Blick Mead site at Amesbury, researchers from the University of Buckingham discovered the burnt leg bone of a toad.