Artifacts

There are undoubtedly millions of ancient artifacts from the past that have served to shed light on the lives of our ancestors from many millennia ago. But some ancient mystical artifacts stand out for their uniqueness, their intrigue, or their ability to expand our knowledge about previously unknown aspects of our history. Here we feature many such ancient history artifacts, from amazing examples of ancient technology, to artistic masterpieces, unexplained objects, ancient texts, and mysterious artifacts that shed light on the daily lives of our ancestors.

5500-year-old shoe in hand of researcher

The Everlasting Shoe: What Does This 5,500-Year-old Shoe Found in a Cave Tell Us About Ancient Armenians?

As any archaeologist knows, very few things other than stone last for a long time. In a moist, warm climate, most organic material such as hemp, cloth, wood, and leather will decay, leaving nothing...
Sumerian chaos monster and sun god

Forget Death and Seek Life! Fascinating Insights into The Human Condition in 4,000-Year-Old Epic of Gilgamesh

“Forget death and seek life!” With these encouraging words, Gilgamesh, the star of the eponymous 4000-year-old epic poem, coins the world’s first heroic catchphrase. At the same time, the young king...
Some of the original 9 axe heads or “Celts’ plus the spearhead found by the Korstad brothers.

Hobbyist Metal Detectorists Find Hoard of 3000-year-old Axes in Farmer's Field in Norway

Some 3,000 years ago, 24 axes were cached in Stjørdal municipality, about 44 km (27.3 miles) east of Trondheim. They're now seeing the light of day once again. In late April, a sensational discovery...
Busts of Akhenaten and Nefertiti.

Why No Nose? The Ancient Breath of Life and Remarkably Powerful ‘Living Statues’

Why was is so important for bodies and images to remain intact after death in Ancient Egypt? And what was the power of ancient statues and reliefs – that they would be a danger to a Pharaoh? For the...
Reconstruction of Chinese paper armor, on the right

Ancient Chinese Paper Armor Put to the Test – You Won’t Believe How Strong It Is!

While Greco-Roman civilization was developing in the West, an equally advanced and complex civilization was emerging in the land along the Yellow and Yangtze Rivers on the western coast of the...
Napoleon’s gold-encrusted sword.

The 10 Most Expensive Antiques Ever Sold at Auction

How do you know what the greatest treasure of human history is? You ascribe a monetary value to it of course. Some artifacts may appear priceless but at an antique auction house, everything has a...
Payava's tomb from Xanthos, now in the British Museum.

Culturally Mixed Messages in the Tomb of Payava: Is it Greek or Persian?

The Tomb of Payava is a decorative rectangular tomb that was transported in the 19th century from a site in Turkey to England is one of the most remarkable artifacts related to Lycian culture...
The Bull by Stuart Yeates.

Brazen Bull: Gruesome Ancient Greek Torture Device Turned Screams into ‘Music’

The Brazen Bull (known also as the ‘Bull of Phalaris’, the ‘Bronze Bull’ or the ‘Sicilian Bull’) was a type of ancient torture and execution device from ancient Greece. The story of the Brazen Bull...
Ponferrada Castle, ‘Castle of the Templars, Leon, Northern Spain. 12th century Castle of Ponferrada by night.

The Mysterious Stories of Castle Ponferrada: Knights Templar, the Camino de Santiago and the lost Sword of Jacques de Molay

Every pilgrim who is traveling along the French route of the Camino de Santiago, going to Santiago de Compostela, will pass through the Ponferrada in the Spanish section. Most of them have no idea...
Elaborate Ceremonial Samurai Helmet. The helmet was one of the most important parts of a Samurai’s armor.

The Brutality and Delicacy of Samurai Armor: Superior Protection with a God-like Aesthetic

The Samurai class was officially dissolved over 150 years ago. Nonetheless, the warriors’ elaborate armor is still recognized globally as an iconic emblem of Japanese military strength and virtue...
The Lion Attacking a Dromedary diorama.

Grisly Find of Human Remains in a Famous Museum Diorama: Whose Skull is on Display?

The Lion Attacking a Dromedary , formerly known as the Arab Courier Attacked by Lions , has attracted thousands of museum-goers for over a hundred years. Now it is at the Carnegie Museum of Natural...
The Fool’s Cap Map of the World.

Cartographic Comedy in the 16th century: The Fool’s Cap Map of the World

The Fool’s Cap Map of the World is an engraving of a map of the world, and is thought to have been made towards the end of the 16th century. This map is peculiar as it is framed within the hood /...
‘Merlyn’ a wizard.

A Spellbinding Story of Discovery: A Medieval Grave for a Wizard and a Magical Artifact

Powerful wizards, warlocks, and sorcerers wielding supernatural staffs and spells have captivated our imaginations for thousands of years. Characters like Merlin, Gandalf, Dumbledore, and Yoda are...
Pyramid of Pepi II with smaller pyramids for the queens Neith, Iput II and Udjebten.

Documenting 6th Dynasty Pharaohs: The Significant Inscription on the South Saqqara Stone

The sands of Egypt still cover many secrets. One such example was unearthed in the desert in Saqqara, which is now a part of Cairo. The stories of the people who lived there more than 5000 years ago...
Left side view of the Pyramid of the Sun, Teotihuacan.

Uncovering Ancient Pyramid Science at Teotihuacan, Where Men Become Gods

Teotihuacan’s Lost Kings , a television special, took an hour long look at the great city, its inhabitants, and the excavation of the Temple of Quetzalcoatl, (also known as the Feathered Serpent...
The Tărtăria Tablets

Are the Tărtăria Tablets Actually Written in Hungarian?

Archaeologists in Bulgaria have found writing that dates back 5000 years. This writing, found inscribed in clay, is called the Tărtăria Tablets by M.R. Reese. Reese makes it clear for Ancient Origins...

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Top New Stories

The Achievement of the Grail.
Leah Tether works at the University of Bristol. She received funding for this research from Anglia Ruskin University, Ghent University, Somerville College, Oxford and the Stationers' Foundation. Type “Holy Grail” into Google and … well, you probably don’t need me to finish that sentence.

Myths & Legends

The Smelliest Women of Ancient Greece: Jason and the Argonauts Get Fragrant
We all know Aphrodite, Greek goddess of love and beauty, made sure that she was worshipped by punishing those who ignored her altars. One brief appearance of this wrath in the tale of Jason and the Argonauts turned into a particularly fragrant episode.

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.

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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)