History students fail to spot fake medieval text
Published 01/06/2011 | 05:00
TWO thousand French postgraduate history students sat a national exam on a supposed 15th-century text that turned out to be a 20th-century fake.
Despite the unprecedented error by leading authorities, the exam went ahead and the fake passage will count towards the students' final marks.
The students were asked to comment on the text as part of this year's medieval history "agregation" -- a postgraduate competitive examination in France for the recruitment of university and secondary school teachers.
The students were told the text was written by a prominent theologian in 1414.
But French historians belatedly spotted the text was written in 1964 by a Belgian historian, who made no secret of the fact he was the author of the fictitious journal. (© Daily Telegraph, London)