A cache of items from the 1800s was found last month by a construction crew digging beneath a statue of Miguel de Cervantes in Madrid’s Plaza de España. The statue of Cervantes, at left, overlooks renderings of his famous characters, the errant knight Don Quixote and his faithful squire Sancho Panza. The metal box, a time capsule, contained several copies of Cervantes’ Don Quixote de la Mancha published in 1819, a newspaper from 1834, travel guides, and other objects.

A new time capsule is being planned to replace the old one, reported the Associated Press today. The Spanish government plans to conduct an online poll asking the public for suggestions on what to include, ideally things related to present-day Madrid or to Cervantes. 

The items from the nearly two-decade-old time capsule will be put on display later this year.

[photo © Flickr/noziroh]