Archaeology Magazine Archive

A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

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The Skull of Doom By Jane MacLaren Walsh
The Mitchell-Hedges crystal skull: Fact, fiction, and the creation of myth

Bogus! An Introduction to Dubious Discoveries by Brittany Jackson and Mark Rose
Why do fakes get made? Why do people fall for hoaxes? Greed, pride, revenge, nationalism, pranks, and gullibility mix in an archaeological setting

Eight Classic Cases by Brittany Jackson and Mark Rose

Eight Classic Cases

Fawcett's Deadly Idol
A fake figurine and a charlatan's vision inspire a doomed search for Atlantis in the jungles of Brazil

The Beringer Hoax
Extraordinary fossils and inscriptions: Works of Nature or God? Or made by jealous colleagues?

Tarragona Two-Step
The "Hercules Sarcophagus" is quickly debunked, but 60 years later a fragment resurfaces as genuine in a prominent academic journal

Walam Olum Hokum
Eccentric nineteenth-century scholar Constantine Rafinesque composes a Native American epic

Saitaphernes' Golden Tiara
After the Louvre's magnificent Greco-Scythian crown is exposed as a fake, Israel Rouchomovski takes a bow

Tracking the Etruscan Warriors
Evidence shows that being a great art historian may not qualify you for detective work

The Notorious Calaveras Skull
A practical joke in gold rush California sparks a decades-long scholarly debate and still has believers today

Who Made the Praeneste Fibula?
History is rewritten when archaeologist Wolfgang Helbig teams up with a forger

More Fakes and Hoaxes

More Fakes and Hoaxes

The Veleia Affair: Find or Fraud in Spain's Basque Country?

Legend of the Crystal Skulls

When Giants Roamed the Earth

Michigan's Mystery Relics

Gold Dust and James Bond

Runestone Fakery

Snake Goddesses, Fake Goddesses

"God's Hands" Did the Devil's Work

Saga of the Persian Princess

Fake Busters

Kenneth Lapatin: Talking About Fakes

Jane MacLaren Walsh: Hunting Fakes

Oscar Muscarella: Scourge of the Forgery Culture

The (Fake) Art Market

The (Fake) Art Market; Strange Sites and Pseudoarchaeology

Forging Ahead Or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love eBay

Fakes Flood Market

Faking African Art

Strange Sites and Pseudoarchaeology

The Bosnia-Atlantis Connection

Seductions of Pseudoarchaeology

Pseudoscience in Cyberspace
Far Out Television
Bogus Books

Theme Park of the Gods

Camelot in Kentucky: Fantasies About Early America

Bogus Sources
Coming soon... General references about fakes, sources for Eight Classic Cases, and background on other specific frauds and hoaxes