dynasty

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...
The Forbidden city of China

The Forgotten History of Beijing’s First Forbidden City

Jonathan Dugdale / The Conversation An ancient site rooted in the heart of modern Beijing, the Forbidden City is one of China’s most famous attractions. Completed in 1420, the city served as the...
King Herihor and Queen Nodjmet adoring the god Osiris in the afterlife. (Photo credits: Trustees of the British Museum (Wikimedia Commons)); Deriv.

The Hunt for Herihor: Waning Pharaonic Power and Advent of Priest-kings–Part I

Early in the Twenty-First Dynasty, a High Priest of Amun-Re, Herihor, declared himself ruler. The custodians of the cult of the state god finally got what they had always yearned for—overtly and...
The tomb of Tang Xianzu was discovered in the city of Fuzhou. (CFP) Insert: Tang Xianzu (1550-1616), Ming poet and dramatist, author of Peony Pavilion.

A Dramatic Ending: Tomb of the Tang Xianzu, ‘Shakespeare of the Orient’, Has Finally Been Found

Tang Xianzu was a notable playwright in China during the Ming Dynasty. Sometimes called the “Shakespeare of the East,” he is best known for four plays, often called the “Four Dreams” and “ The Peony...
A photo of the Warangal Fort’s Kakatiya Kala Thoranam.

Warangal Fort: More Spiritual Haven than Safe Haven

When you think of a fort you probably picture a pretty solid and intimidating structure. A practical, no frills affair. The Warangal Fort was somewhat different. A huge and opulent construction built...
Grinding stone, Dendera Temple, Egypt.

The Evidence is Cut in Stone: A Compelling Argument for Lost High Technology in Ancient Egypt

Most people know of the great construction achievements of the dynastic Egyptians such as the pyramids and temples of the Giza Plateau area as well as the Sphinx. Many books and videos show...
Collection of Egyptian Art, design by Anand Balaji

In the Shadow of Nakhtmin: The Unfortunate Crown Prince of Egypt

No other period in ancient Egyptian history had its share—almost a surfeit—of enigmatic and poorly understood characters as the Amarna era. Mysterious kings and queens apart, Nakhtmin, a...
 A painted relief of Ankhesenamun; design by Anand Balaji

The Hunt for Ankhesenamun: How Did a Young Woman Stop an Ancient Dynasty from Imploding? Part I

The names of Akhenaten, Nefertiti, and Tutankhamun—prominent players from the Eighteenth Dynasty of the New Kingdom period in ancient Egypt—have been in the spotlight for well over a century...
Collection of Egyptian Art, design by Anand Balaji

Lasting Puzzle of the Unidentified KV35 Mummy: Is it Really Prince Webensenu Or Another?—Part I

A host of pharaohs who were removed to safety from their burial places in ancient times rested peacefully for millennia within the bowels of the magnificent tomb of Amenhotep II. Among the great...
A reconstruction of a burial site from prehistoric China. In Yinxu, about 2,500 pits filled with remains of sacrificial victims have been found in addition to other cemeteries were elites and other locals were buried.

Thousands of War Captives Enslaved for Years Before Being Slain as Sacrifice in Prehistoric China

Some archaeologists in China have analyzed the makeup of elements in the bones in a prehistoric cemetery and say the people buried there were probably war captives who were forced into slavery before...
Artist’s representation of Wei Zhongxian.

Wei Zhongxian: When China Yielded to the Terrifying Power of a Notorious Eunuch

Wei Zhongxian is often considered to be the most powerful and notorious eunuch in Chinese history. He had powers almost equivalent to that of the emperor’s and those who opposed him were ruthlessly...
Remains of the famous Fugan Temple that was recently discovered in Chengdu, China.

Buried for Almost a Millennium, Archaeologists Recover Over 1,500 Religious Artifacts at Lost Chinese Temple

A team of archaeologists has uncovered more than 1000 tablets inscribed with Buddhist scriptures and over 500 pieces of stone sculpture, as well as glazed tiles with inscriptions, at the site of a...
Asokan pillar at Vaishali, Bihar, India.

Beautiful Dynastic Artistry Shaped the Face of Modern India

Centuries removed from the prehistoric Indus Valley Region, the Mauryan and Kushan dynasties are among the most significant cultural and artistic regimes in Indian history. The prominence of the...
A worker on the Middle Kingdom Theban Project takes out an embalming jar he had just discovered among a cache of other embalming materials of the Vizier Ipi, who lived more than 4,000 years ago. (Photo courtesy of the Spanish Mission)

Egyptologists Find 4,000-year-old Dried Heart, 50 Embalming Jars and Mummification Materials of Ancient Vizier

A team of Spanish archaeologists has discovered a large cache of embalming materials for the Vizier Ipi of ancient Egypt’s 12th Dynasty of the Middle Kingdom, including large urns, shrouds and...
The bottom of the cartouche is presently submerged in water. It was found in an ongoing illegal excavation at the bottom of a 4-meter pit in a home in Abydos.

Cartouche of the Last Pharaoh of Egypt Found at Illegal Dig Under Home in Abydos

A team of Egyptian archaeologists found a cartouche of the last native Egyptian pharaoh under the home of a man in Abydos, Egypt. The man and his accomplices were doing an illegal excavation...
Cataclysmic natural disasters frame indelible human stories.

No Smoke Without Fire: The Existence of Xia Dynasty and the Great Flood Legend

The Xia Dynasty is traditionally regarded as the first dynasty of China. This dynasty is believed to have been founded by Yu the Great towards the end of the 3 rd millennium BC, and lasted until...

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Ancient Places

Some of the Mitla mosaics.
Unique and curious designs plaster the walls of the most popular Zapotec archaeological site in Mexico. They are called the Mitla mosaics and are unrivalled in their precision and quality of workmanship. But a mystery surrounds the carved symbols as some researchers suggest they contain a coded language just waiting to be deciphered.

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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.

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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)