China

China has a very long history of marijuana use.

High Times in Ancient China: 2,700-Year-Old Marijuana Stash Found in Shaman Grave

A 2,700-year-old stash of whole marijuana plants was uncovered in an ancient tomb in northwest China. If marijuana aged like wine, the rare “artifact” may be one of the most wanted objects for all...
A Tarim mummy

Where the West Actually Meets the East—The Tarim Mummies

Ancient Rome and China were on opposite sides of the world as far as both civilizations were concerned. Although both cultures were aware of each other’s existence because of the Silk Road, each...
A re-analysis of the Dali skull is helping rewrite the story of human origins.

Rewriting Our Origins: Skull Found in China Promotes a Wider Perspective on Human Evolution

Most people discussing the origins of our species suggest that Homo sapiens can be traced back to Africa about 200,000 years ago. However, an increasing amount of evidence suggests that there may be...
 A statue of Buddha

BREAKING: Remains of Buddha Found? 2,500-Year-Old Cremated Bones with Revealing Inscription Unearthed in China

In what could be an enormously significant finding for Buddhists around the world, archaeologists in China have unearthed an ancient ceramic box containing cremated human remains, which carries an...
Detail of General Zheng He statue in Sam Po Kong temple, Semarang, Indonesia.

The Chinese May Have Beaten the Famous Voyage of Columbus by 70 Years

There are a few controversial claims floating around that the Americas were reached by oversea cultures before Columbus made his well-known visit to the “New World” in 1492. For example, Italian...
A full-size model of a "middle-sized treasure boat" (63.25 m long) of the Zheng He fleet at the Treasure Boat Shipyard site in Nanjing built ca. 2005.

Could Clues From the Ocean Floor Finally Lead to Zheng He’s Lost Treasure Ship?

A recent investigation off the coast of Sri Lanka is offering hope that the lost treasure ship of Zheng He, one of the most famous admirals in Chinese history, may finally be found. This ship sank...
Naughty ghost statue, in the ghost city Fengdu

Fengdu Ghost City: Testing Your Soul in the Domain of the Chinese King of Hell

Numerous shrines, temples and monasteries pepper Fengdu Ghost City. But all of them are dedicated to the afterlife. Legends link the site to the King of the Underworld. Would you dare to enter his...
A yin-yang symbol.

A Legendary Symbol Born from Chaos: The Philosophy of Yin and Yang

The complementary nature of Yin and Yang are perhaps best illustrated by the iconic black-and-white yin-yang symbol. Yet, the philosophy behind the concept can apply to many things. The ancient...
Some of the Song Dynasty coins found under a house in Fuliang county of Jingdezhen city in East China's Jiangxi province.

A Staggering 5.6 Tons of Coins Are Unearthed in China and Archaeologists Struggle to Fathom Who Hid Them

When a villager living in the Jiangxi province of China started to work on the foundation of his home, he couldn’t have imagined what he would find. The discovery of a hoard of coins soon led...
The hull of the ship was cracked, suggesting it was hit and took on water, leading to it being wrecked some 700 years ago

700-Year-Old Shipwreck Loaded with Artifacts Discovered in China

A team of archaeologists have discovered a shipwreck in China, which had been hiding under silt and mud for more than seven centuries. Experts suggest that the new find dates back to a chronological...
Skeleton of Xiongnu female with coal buckle. Image: Marina Kilunovskaya

Tighten Your Belt: 2,200 year-old Xiongnu Jewelry Made of Coal, Jade and Coral

By Sergey Zubchuk and Anna Liesowska Eyecatching belt buckles worn by Xiongnu female invaders have been found buried on the banks of the Yenesei River in the modern-day Tuva Republic. Another buckle...
Charles Hanson of Hansons Auctioneers with the plate

Granny’s Ming Dynasty Style Plate Sold for Nearly a Quarter of a Million Pounds

An ancient Chinese plate dating back to the 1700s has been sold in the UK for almost a quarter of a million pounds. That’s about £100,000 more than experts predicted for the almost 300-year-old piece...
A statue of a Kitchen God - CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 with flames

Torn Apart & Together Again in Death: Tragic Legends of the Kitchen Gods

For many of us, the kitchen is very important place. Apart from its role as a place for family members to gather, the kitchen often represents the warmth, happiness and harmony within the family...
8 Immortals in a temple in Vietnam

The 8 Immortals of China: How ordinary mortals worked hard to achieve superpowers and become legendary

The general appearances of Chinese gods lead us to think of them as sober imperial bureaucrats. They mostly look like middle-aged men dressed in official-looking robes, spending their time reading...
Cao Cao cites a poem before the Battle of Red Cliffs, portrait at the Long Corridor of the Summer Palace, Beijing

Devastating Defeat for Chinese Warlord in Largest Naval Battle in History

The largest naval battle in history occurred in the winter of 208/9 AD as part of the war for control of China. Hundreds of thousands of soldiers fought - some estimates suggest that the exact number...
Liao Dynasty (907-1125) tomb mural by unknown painter in Inner Mongolia. Scene of everyday life. Men and boys have distinctive Khitan hairstyle. (Public Domain) Insert: A famous Liao Dynasty Sancai Luohan, Circa 1000

An Intriguing Empire: The Lasting Impression of the Nomadic Liao Dynasty on Chinese Culture

Well-represented in artifacts found in museums and private collections, the Liao Dynasty rose and expanded as the Tang Dynasty dwindled in power. This was the first state to control all of Manchuria...

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Ancient Places

El Caracol Observatory at Chichen Itza (Wright Reading/CC BY-NC 2.0) and Composite 3D laser scan image of El Caracol from above
In 1526, the Spanish conquistador Francisco de Montejo arrived on the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico and found most of the great Maya cities deeply eroded and unoccupied. Many generations removed from the master builders, engineers, and scientists who conceived and built the cities, the remaining Maya they encountered had degenerated into waring groups who practiced blood rituals and human sacrifice.

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)