Piltdown man reconstructed
The Piltdown man sketched by A. Forestier after Professor Keith's reconstruction, and an inset showing an alterative reconstruction after Dr. A. Smith Woodward. The discovery, made by Charles Dawson in a gravel deposit near Piltdown Common, of part of a jaw and a portion of the skull, aroused great interest. Presumed to be the remains of the oldest known inhabitant of Europe, the Piltdown man was thought to be the 'missing link', until it was found to be an elaborate hoax in the early 1950s.
© Illustrated London News Ltd/Mary Evans
Skull and Crossbones - Inverted
The Jolly Roger is the name given to any of various flags flown to identify a ship's crew as pirates. The flag most usually identified as the Jolly Roger today is the skull and crossbones, being a flag consisting of a skull above two long bones set in an x-mark arrangement. This design was used by four pirates, captains Edward England, John Taylor, Sam Bellamy and John Martel.Despite its appearance in popular culture, plain black flags were often employed by most pirates in the 17th-18th century. Historically, the flag was flown to frighten pirates' victims into surrendering without a fight, since it conveyed the message that the attackers were outlaws who would not consider themselves bound by the usual rules of engagement and might, therefore, slaughter those they defeated.
© Mary Evans Picture Library/TOM GILLMOR
Harold's oath of fealty to Duke William of Normandy
Allegedly after being shipwrecked on the French coast in 1064 (a date highly disputed amongst historians), The Bayeux Tapestry, and other Norman sources, record that Harold swore an oath on sacred relics to Duke William of Normandy to support his (William's) claim to the English throne. After the death of King Edward the Confessor, the Normans were quick to point out that in accepting the crown of England, Harold had broken this alleged oath. He makes his pledge in the presence of Bishop Odo, Adeliza, Matilda, Haco and Wolnoth. Date: 1054
© Mary Evans Picture Library/Tom Gillmor