The Once and Future Road

It was late in the day in the middle of last July when one of the archaeological students digging deep in the Novgorod earth suddenly hit something solid. Whatever it was, he struck it so hard that his shovel split it nearly in two. At first, the learned scientists from Moscow feared the precious discovery had been lost. But after a winter of painstaking restoration work and linguistic sleuthing, they can now claim with confidence that the find is a medieval psalter — a book of psalms etched in wax in a triptych of wooden tablets that dates from the first...

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