Ancestors

An ankle bone from 52 million years ago suggests that the earliest primates, the ancestors of humans, were great at leaping from tree to tree. Credit: Douglas Boyer, Duke University

Why Your Ancestors Would Have Aced the Long Jump

This tiny ankle bone belonged to one of the earliest members of the primate family tree. The 52-million-year-old fossil suggests that the first primates were expert leapers. Discovered more than 30...
Researcher Elspeth Hayes with Mark Djandjomerr and traditional owner May Nango extracting comparative samples at a cave adjacent Madjedbebe. Credit: David Vadiveloo / Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation

New Findings in Australia Have Shocking Ramifications for Human Occupation, Species Extinction and Out of Africa Theories

A group of archaeologists in Australia has discovered the world's oldest stone axes with a ground edge. This discovery is extremely significant as it pushes Australia's human history back to 65,000...
Pietro Perugino's use of perspective in this fresco at the Sistine Chapel (1481–82) helped bring the Renaissance to Rome

Do Your Eyes Fool You? Ancient Vision and a New Reality — How to See and Draw Like the Ancients

From the beginning of time, those among us we now call artists have tried to capture in two dimensions what they saw of the real, three-dimensional world in which they lived. Almost from the very...
Artistic representation of an Australopithecus family. Australopithecus afarensis like “Lucy” may have required some help in childbirth.

The Evolution of Human Birth: An Incredible Story a Million Years in the Making

A team of scientists claim that they have found a mask depicting an Australopithecus afarensis, a human ancestor that could have possibly given birth in a way that combines the childbirth practices...
Prehistoric Man.

Are Humans Just Self-Domesticated Apes?

One of the greatest mysteries is the origin of the human mind. Why are humans so different from other animals? Why do we have languages, religions, complex political and economic systems, and...
Paleolithic Jewelry: Still Eye-catching After 50,000 Years

Paleolithic Jewelry: Still Eye-catching After 50,000 Years

By Tamara Zubchuk | The Siberian Times Beads made from ostrich eggs buried in the Siberian cave around 2,000 generations ago reveal amazing artistic (and drilling) skills of our long-ago ancestors...
Neanderthal

Ancient Human History More Complex Than Previously Thought, Researchers Say

Relationships between the ancestors of modern humans and other archaic populations such as Neanderthals and Denisovans were likely more complex than previously thought, involving interbreeding within...
Smarter Brains Are Blood-Thirsty Brains

Smarter Brains Are Blood-Thirsty Brains

A University of Adelaide-led project has overturned the theory that the evolution of human intelligence was simply related to the size of the brain -- but rather linked more closely to the supply of...
Imaginative depiction of the Stone Age, by Viktor Vasnetsov.

Just a Few Men Controlled Reproduction in Prehistory and Dominate World Genetics Today

A new genetic study of male ancestry shows there were periods in human prehistory when just a few elite men controlled reproduction. For example, one man about 190,000 years ago was the ancestor of 1...
A reconstruction of a male of our evolutionary cousin the Neanderthals (Modified from an image by Cicero Moraes).

A Golden Age of Ancient DNA Science Begins

If I had taken a straw poll among anthropologists 10 years ago asking them how far genetic research would come in the next decade, I doubt anyone would have come close to predicting the big impact...
Detail of the Laxe dos Carballos  at Campo Lameiro, Galicia, Spain

A Walk Amongst the Petroglyphs of Galicia: Prehistoric Designs Trace Life and Times of Bronze Age Europeans

From the Upper Palaeolithic and down through the Neolithic, the Chalcolithic and into the Bronze Age, our ancestors in western Europe left behind traces of their thoughts and beliefs through rock art...
A reconstructed Neanderthal skeleton, right, is displayed next to a modern human skeleton at the Museum of Natural History in New York.

Neanderthals Mated with Modern Humans Much Earlier than Previously Thought, Study Finds

Using several different methods of DNA analysis, an international research team has found what they consider to be strong evidence of an interbreeding event between Neanderthals and modern humans...
Ancient European hunters face an Uro (European bison).

8000 Years of European Evolution Disclosed by Genome Study

Through the analysis of 230 samples of prehistoric genome, scientists believe they have identified the genes that gave rise to the European Neolithic revolution - with the transition from hunting and...
The archaeological team, including a likely descendant of the prehistoric California people being studied, re-created one of the burials in an image.

Ancient California burials show a macabre way to honor the dead

Different societies approach death in a great variety of ways. One community in California about 3,000 to 4,000 years ago honored their dead by burying the deceased headless in some cases or with...
Virtual reconstruction of two-million-year-old ear.

Scientists unravel how ancient hominids heard the world

How did the world sound to our ancient human relatives two million years ago? While we obviously don’t have any sound recordings or written records from anywhere near that long ago, we do have one...
Comparison between the skull of a modern human (left) and a Neanderthal (right).

Scientists from Atapuerca Revolutionizing Human Evolution

Once again, the findings of the now famous Pit of Bones , one of the most important sites in the Sierra de Atapuerca (Burgos, Spain), seems to "force us to revolutionize" human evolution as we have...

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Top New Stories

Great Pyramid of Egypt. Source: BigStockPhoto
A new set of investigations in ancient Egypt have led to some startling discoveries – the translation of an ancient papyrus, the unearthing of an ingenious system of waterworks, and the discovery of a 4,500-year-old ceremonial boat – may be the final pieces to the millennia-old puzzle of how the Great Pyramid of Egypt was really built.

Our Mission

At Ancient Origins, we believe that one of the most important fields of knowledge we can pursue as human beings is our beginnings. And while some people may seem content with the story as it stands, our view is that there exists countless mysteries, scientific anomalies and surprising artifacts that have yet to be discovered and explained.

The goal of Ancient Origins is to highlight recent archaeological discoveries, peer-reviewed academic research and evidence, as well as offering alternative viewpoints and explanations of science, archaeology, mythology, religion and history around the globe.

We’re the only Pop Archaeology site combining scientific research with out-of-the-box perspectives.

By bringing together top experts and authors, this archaeology website explores lost civilizations, examines sacred writings, tours ancient places, investigates ancient discoveries and questions mysterious happenings. Our open community is dedicated to digging into the origins of our species on planet earth, and question wherever the discoveries might take us. We seek to retell the story of our beginnings. 

Ancient Image Galleries

View from the Castle Gate (Burgtor). (Public Domain)
Door surrounded by roots of Tetrameles nudiflora in the Khmer temple of Ta Phrom, Angkor temple complex, located today in Cambodia. (CC BY-SA 3.0)
Cable car in the Xihai (West Sea) Grand Canyon (CC BY-SA 4.0)