This Week In History News, Oct. 3

Medieval burial vault unearthed in Belgium, trove of illegal Nazi memorabilia discovered in Brazil, secrets of Marie Antoinette’s intimate correspondence unveiled. Construction Workers In Belgium Happen Upon Intact Medieval Burial Vault With 50 Skeletons Inside RaakvlakIn an effort to preserve the tomb from decay, archaeologists have made a complete 3D model of it and even … Read more

The Habsburg Jaw And The Disturbing Cost Of Royal Inbreeding

Learn about the Habsburg jaw and the debilitating costs of rampant, decades-long incest among Europe’s most powerful royal families. While marriages between biological relatives were common in the ruling houses of Europe well up until the last century (Queen Elizabeth II actually married her own third cousin), the Spanish Habsburgs engaged in the practice with … Read more

Franz Reichelt, The Man Who Died Jumping Off The Eiffel Tower

Inventor Franz Reichelt had so much confidence in his homemade parachute that he tested it in front of a crowd at the Eiffel Tower — but his hopes were immediately dashed. Wikimedia CommonsFranz Reichelt poses in his infamous parachute suit. They say “pride cometh before the fall.” In few circumstances can this be applied so … Read more

X-Ray Analysis Reveals Text In Marie Antoinette’s Censored Love Letters

The analysis of Marie Antoinette’s letters to a Swedish count revealed words like “beloved” and “tender friend,” suggesting their relationship was more than a close friendship. French National Museum of Natural HistoryThe swirly black ink atop the text in Marie Antoinette’s letters had made them impossible to read until now. For two centuries, a censor’s … Read more