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Sun, 27 Apr 2008 10:23:37
Ancient priceless gemstones and jewels belonging to postdated Achaemenid era have been unearthed in Iran's southern province of Fars.
Archeologists succeeded in discovering over 20 pieces of 2,200-year-old bracelets, necklaces and earrings adorned with agate, ruby and opal in ancient graves behind Salman-e Farsi Dam in Iran's southern city of Yarj.
“The discovery of such gemstones is a unique achievement. Agates in various colors, ivory, opal and rock crystal (Quartz) in many colors were used to embellish the bracelets, necklaces and earrings,” said Alireza Ja'fari Zand, head of the archeological team at the dam.
“Discovery of jewels and gemstones in Sassanid and postdated Achaemenid graves is unprecedented,” he added.
Opal, which is described by Shakespeare as a miracle and the Queen of Gems, is depicted as a symbol of hope, happiness and truth in the East.
Ivory and clay were also used in making some of the necklaces.
Sunday, April 27, 2008
From The New York Times
Going for the Grisly Gives a Show Staying Power
... The series, produced by WNET in New York, starts its eighth season on Wednesday on most stations. It has been well received by critics and has scooped up numerous awards, including several Cine Golden Eagles, which honor documentaries, and three Emmy nominations.
“The stories that work either shed some light on a moment in history we know a lot about or a moment that has been forgotten,” said Jared Lipworth, executive producer of the series.
There are also few well-known names attached to “Doping for Gold,” the May 7 “Secrets of the Dead” episode, which goes back to the East Germany of the 1960s, ’70 and ’80s, when officials systematically gave testosterone and steroids to athletes. The story has particular resonance, Mr. Lipworth said, because of today’s sports steroid scandals.
At the centerpiece of the “Secrets of the Dead” episode is the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal, when the artificially enhanced East German delegation won 40 gold medals, and its women’s swim team captured 11 of 13 events.
Behind the scenes the young female athletes — without their knowledge or consent — were given so many drugs that one was masculinized and underwent a sex-change operation. Others later suffered serial miscarriages and serious health problems.
“They were very strong women; they were very fast; we thought they were machines,” Wendy Boglioli, a member of the 1976 United States swim team, says in the film.
If nothing else, the episode is an important cautionary tale for young athletes today about the dangers of doping, Ms. Boglioli said in an interview. “If you don’t buy that cheating is wrong, look at what it does medically,” Ms. Boglioli said. “That’s what’s paramount in this film.”
I cannot say that I remember the summer Olympics from 1976; I vaguely recall doping scandals from much later Olympics. So - who were these women and what happened to them?
The photo is Kornelia Ender, who won 4 gold medals for East Germany at the 1976 Montreal Olympics. I cannot believe that no one questioned the physique on this broad back then! I've never seen a woman who looks like this in real life. For Goddess sake!I found this little information about the after-effects of the massive drugs that were (supposedly without their consent) given to the East German female athletes:
The women on the 1976 swim team were teens and preteens when they were given these steroids. Now, they report many adverse effects from this “secret” drug use including birth defects, enlarged hearts and gynecological problems – including one team member who has had multiple miscarriages (Naimzadeh).
Egypt: Tomb of Cleopatra and lover to be uncovered
Cairo, 24 April(AKI) - Archaeologists have revealed plans to uncover the 2000 year-old tomb of ancient Egypt's most famous lovers, Cleopatra and the Roman general Mark Antony later this year. Zahi Hawass, prominent archaeologist and director of Egypt's superior council for antiquities announced a proposal to test the theory that the couple were buried together.
He discussed the project in Cairo at a media conference about the ancient pharaohs. Hawass said that the remains of the legendary Egyptian queen and her Roman lover, Mark Antony, were inside a temple called Tabusiris Magna, 30 kilometres from the port city of Alexandria in northern Egypt.
Until recently access to the tomb has been hindered because it is under water, but archaeologists plan to drain the site so they can begin excavation in November. Among the clues to suggest that the temple may contain Cleopatra's remains is the discovery of numerous coins with the face of the queen. According to Hawas, Egyptologists have also uncovered a 120-metre-long underground tunnel with many rooms, some of which could contain more details about Cleopatra.
Born in Rome, Mark Antony was a military general and commander, as well as supporter of Julius Caesar. He was also Cleopatra's lover and bore him a son, called Caesarion. After Julius Caesar's assassination in March 44 B.C., Antony formed a triumvirate with Octavian, also known as Augustus, and Marcus Lepidus. Civil war ensued in Rome due to disagreements between Antony and Octavian, who was Julius Caesar's heir and who later became Rome's first emperor. Antony was subsequently defeated by Octavian and he later committed suicide.
Cleopatra, who came to power at 18 years of age, was once the ruler of Egypt and considered the last of seven queens of the same name. She was famous for her intelligence, her beauty and her political power. Cleopatra who also bore Mark Antony twins, committed suicide after his death in August 30 B.C.
What happened to the children?
Show Danica The Money
By Tom Van Riper, Forbes.com Apr 25, 3:43 am EDT
It’s official: Danica Patrick is no longer a novelty. She’s a champion.
And it’s only matter of time before sports marketers see her in a whole new light, as both an individual endorser and for what she can bring to the sport of auto racing. By capturing first place in Sunday’s Indy 300 race in Motegi, Japan, Patrick shook free of critics who have downplayed her sports celebrity as more flash than substance.
Being the first female driver to hold a lead in the Indianapolis 500, as Patrick first did three years ago before ultimately finishing fourth, does plenty to get you noticed. But to make it last, it’s best to get that first win under your belt.
“It translates into seven or eight figures in marketing and endorsements,” says Darren Prince, who runs Prince Marketing Group, a sports and entertainment company that counts Magic Johnson and Dennis Rodman among its clients.
Patrick, recently turned 26, has already scored heavily on the endorsement circuit. The $5 million she raked in between June 2006 and June 2007 ranked her fifth on Forbes’ Celebrity 100 list of female athletes, behind tennis stars Maria Sharapova and Serena Williams, and golfers Michelle Wie and Annika Sorenstam. After signing on with Andretti Green Racing, Patrick has secured Motorola as her chief car sponsor, backed up by XM Satellite Radio and Go Daddy.
She also pitches the Civic sedan for Honda and Secret antiperspirant for Procter & Gamble.
“In the eyes of brand decision makers, she was a personality who happened to be a very good race car driver,” says Dan Migala, who runs a sports business newsletter called the Migala Report. “Now she can be marketed as an athlete. She has the label of racing champion.”
Until now, Patrick has often been lumped into that space traditionally linked to tennis whizzes Anna Kournikova, a highly ranked player who failed to win a major tournament, and Andre (“Image is Everything”) Agassi, in the days before he broke through and won a Wimbledon title.
And that could continue if she doesn’t follow through as a consistent top-10 driver who nets an occasional first-place finish in major races. That’s what will determine whether she goes down as auto racing’s version of Chris Evert, a multiple champion whose popularity and endorsement opportunities lasted long past her playing days, or of Tracy Austin, who had just a brief run as the world’s top-ranked female player before faltering. One-hit wonders only go so far too.
“Multiple wins could carry her to legacy status,” Migala says.
Sports marketing experts don’t particularly expect Patrick to succeed in wooing too many traditional male racing fans, who tend to only grudgingly accept a woman on the circuit. The value of her breakthrough comes in potential numbers of new fans and new dollars that could be drawn to the sport. Cultivating a new fan base usually starts with a novelty.
Not that the classically good-looking Patrick, who recently posed for a spread in the latest Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue, doesn’t have her share of male fans. Without winning, marketing through sex appeal only goes so far. But as a complement to winning, it’s a pretty big asset in getting to the next level. Just ask Tom Brady and Derek Jeter.
The top five:
1. Maria Sharapova: Slideshow
2. Michelle Wie: Slideshow
3. Serena Williams: Slideshow
4. Annika Sorenstam: Slideshow
5. Danica Patrick: Slideshow
World’s Top Earning Female Athletes
Danica Patrick's official website - PLEASE ditch the flash and the music, yech!