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Europe

Ancient places can be found all over Europe. Their fascinating histories and impressive artifacts open intriguing glimpses to times past, and open up a window on European history. Visiting such ancient places in Europe can be an unforgettable experience.

Science is constantly discovering new archaeological places and uncovering more evidence into what we once thought we knew about our history, therefore offering new pieces to the ever changing puzzle of humanity’s past and altering how we interpret it. This section will present the most interesting archaeological sites all over Europe, as well as new discoveries of ancient places that are worth paying a visit.

Kivik Kungagraven: A Tomb Fit for a King

Kivik Kungagraven: A Tomb Fit for a King

In 1748, two farmers stumbled upon an ancient stone tomb near the village of Kivik in southern Sweden while digging in a quarry. The tomb, now known as Kivik Kungagraven (‘King’s Grave of Kivik’),...
Stepping Back in Time at Skara Brae: A Neolithic Settlement in the Heart of Prehistoric Orkney

Stepping Back in Time at Skara Brae: A Neolithic Settlement in the Heart of Prehistoric Orkney

In 1850, a fierce storm hit the Bay o’ Skaill on the main island of the Orkney island archipelago. In doing so, it ripped grass from a hill, then known as Skerrabra, to reveal the remnants of an...
A burnt mound in use.

Blood, Meat, and Beer? The Feasts that May Have Been Created in a Fulacht Fiadh Burnt Mound

Dotting the landscapes of Ireland, England, Scotland, and Wales, fulachtaí fia remain a mystery from millennia gone by. The most common type of prehistoric archaeological site in Ireland, fulachtaí...
Engravings, Passageways, and Intriguing Stone Monuments: The Astronomical Temples of Loughcrew

Engravings, Passageways, and Intriguing Stone Monuments: The Astronomical Temples of Loughcrew

It is probably not possible to tell when humans first began to wonder about the stars, the sun, and the moon or try to understand their motion, though there is evidence of a lunar calendar being used...
Sunbeams illuminating a church

A Sacred Light in the Darkness: Surprising Winter Solstice Illuminations at Spanish Missions

On Wednesday, Dec. 21, nations in the Northern Hemisphere marked the winter solstice – the shortest day and longest night of the year. For thousands of years people have marked this event with...
A Feast for the Eyes and Ears: The World’s Most Beautiful and Majestic Library

A Feast for the Eyes and Ears: The World’s Most Beautiful and Majestic Library

The Clementinum is a complex of historical buildings founded by Jesuits in Prague, Czech Republic, and is famous for its stunning Baroque-style library which houses more than 20,000 historically rare...
A Boy, to Vei, to Venus? Piecing Together the Puzzle of the Etruscan Orvieto Necropolis

A Boy, to Vei, to Venus? Piecing Together the Puzzle of the Etruscan Orvieto Necropolis

Ancient Etruscan deities continue to puzzle researchers. Unveiling the truth about their cults and positions in the pantheon took decades, yet they still protect some of their secrets. One of the...
The Only Library Ever Recovered from Antiquity: The 1800 Scrolls of Herculaneum

The Only Library Ever Recovered from Antiquity: The 1800 Scrolls of Herculaneum

The Villa of the Papyri is the name given to a private house that was uncovered in the ancient Roman city of Herculaneum. This city, along with nearby Pompeii, is perhaps best remembered for its...
The Celsus Library: 20,000 Scrolls Lost to History but Its Striking Architecture Remains

The Celsus Library: 20,000 Scrolls Lost to History but Its Striking Architecture Remains

Across the Greco-Roman world, there were many collections of scrolls, some kept by private individuals in personal libraries and others stored in public libraries such as the Great Library of...
A Tower for Power Reduced to Ruins: The Forgotten Story of Torre San Sadurniño

A Tower for Power Reduced to Ruins: The Forgotten Story of Torre San Sadurniño

Tower ruins hidden in a bay near the waters of the Atlantic Ocean are one of the greatest treasures of a small community in Cambados, Galicia, Spain. The stones remember battles with Vikings and...
Bucegi Mountains: Strange Happenings, Conspiracies and Folk Legends

Bucegi Mountains: Strange Happenings, Conspiracies and Folk Legends

The Bucegi Mountains are a wonderful natural attraction in Romania. The peak, Omu, rises 1.5 miles (2505 meters) above the pristine Prahova Valley. Since 1935, the valley has been considered a...
The Znojmo Catacombs: A Maze of Tunnels Where No Enemies Escaped Alive

The Znojmo Catacombs: A Maze of Tunnels Where No Enemies Escaped Alive

The Znojmo Catacombs are a series of subterranean passageways located beneath the city of Znojmo, in the Czech Republic. The underground tunnels were built to protect and shelter people in times of...
Grime's Graves: 5,000-Year-Old Flint Mine Opens a Window to the Past

Grime's Graves: 5,000-Year-Old Flint Mine Opens a Window to the Past

Grime's Graves is a spectacular Neolithic flint mining site located near Thetford Forest, Norfolk, in the East of England. Beginning around 5,000 years ago, and continuing for an entire millennium,...
Where the Fairies Dwell: Irish Ringforts in Our World and Theirs

Where the Fairies Dwell: Irish Ringforts in Our World and Theirs

A cloud of mystery looms over the ringforts that speckle the countryside of Ireland. More than 45,000 ringforts have been documented throughout Northern Europe and yet little is known about the date...
5,600-Year-Old Ceremonial Center Found Near Stonehenge, Built 1,000 Years Before Stone Circle was Erected

5,600-Year-Old Ceremonial Center Found Near Stonehenge, Built 1,000 Years Before Stone Circle was Erected

Picture people 5,650 years ago gorging on huge amounts of beef, smashing large decorated bowls that may have held broth or other liquids and possibly smashing human skulls. They apparently did all...
4,000-Year-Old Megalithic Tomb in Spain Vandalized with Harry Potter References

4,000-Year-Old Megalithic Tomb in Spain Vandalized with Harry Potter References

A vandal has defaced a fine specimen of an ancient dolmen tomb, made of large rock slabs, in Vigo, Galicia, Spain. The graffiti vandal spray-painted the word “Always” and arcane symbols, both...

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Human Origins

Map of sites and postulated migratory pathways associated with modern humans dispersing across Asia during the Late Pleistocene.
Most people are now familiar with the traditional "Out of Africa" model: modern humans evolved in Africa and then dispersed across Asia and reached Australia in a single wave about 60,000 years ago. However, technological advances in DNA analysis and other fossil identification techniques, as well as an emphasis on multidisciplinary research

Ancient Technology

Detail of a star chart dating to the Middle Kingdom.
The calendar is one of mankind’s most important inventions. Calendars allowed societies to organize time for religious, social, economic, and administrative purposes. The calendar, or rather, two sets of calendars, were invented by the ancient Egyptians. One of these was a lunar calendar, which was used mainly for the organization of religious festivals.

Ancient Places

Smuts house
The farmstead of General Jan Smuts on the outskirts of Pretoria, is reputed to be one of the most haunted private homes in the country, according to Mr Mark Rose-Christie, raconteur and social scientist, who regularly takes brave visitors on a tour of haunted sites on his mystery ghost bus.

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)