funeral

Sculptor’s Cave, Covesea, Lossiemouth

What Really Went on in the Sculptor’s Cave Where Hundreds of Bronze Age Child Remains Were Unearthed?

Pictish carvings grace its walls; crucibles, a swan’s neck pin, and bronze arm rings were scattered across its floor – Sculptor’s Cave has had an exciting and varied history stretching back to the...
16th or 17th century painting of the ‘Dance of Death.’ The living weren’t always scared of the dead.

Dance Macabre: How the Dead Danced with the Living in Medieval Society

Ashby Kinch / The Conversation In the Halloween season , American culture briefly participates in an ancient tradition of making the world of the dead visible to the living: Children dress as...
Image during part of the funeral ceremony for Thailand’s deceased King Bhumibol Adulyadej.

The Grand Funeral of Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej and Intricate Buddhist Funerary Rites

For Thai Buddhists, funerals are extremely important moments, as they represent rebirth and the passage from one existence to another. The elaborate funeral rites recently held in honor of Thailand’s...
The sarcophagus of Junius Bassus.

The Sarcophagus of Junius Bassus: How a Coffin Defeated the Gods

Bacchus into Jesus. This is a topic seen many times before and its relevance continues here. As mentioned in a previous article , the attributes of the Greco-Roman god of wine, transformation and...
Loutrophorai: Greek, Attica, c.440BC, (Penn Valley); Greek, Classical Period, 450–425 BC (MFA);Greek, South Italian, Early Hellenistic Period c.320–310 BC

From Cremated Ashes to Holy Water for a Bride’s Ritual Bath, The Loutrophoros Was No Ordinary Vase

A loutrophoros is a distinctive type of Greek pottery characterized by an elongated neck with two handles. It is a specific type of amphora , which was a type of Greek container used as early as the...
A funerary garden discovered by CSIC's research team.

A First-Ever Find in Egypt: 4,000-Year-Old Funerary Garden at Tomb Entrance

The Djehuty Project, led by research professor, José Manuel Galán, from the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), has discovered a 4,000-year-old funerary garden- the first such garden ever to be...
Researchers Wonder if Rich Viking Boat Burial Found in Scotland was Made for a Warrior Woman

Researchers Wonder if Rich Viking Boat Burial Found in Scotland was Made for a Warrior Woman

A team of researchers who have been examining the horde of grave goods left in an amazing Viking boat burial have decided that the deceased individual was definitely an important person in their...
Evidence of Gruesome 9,500-Year-Old Funerary Rites Found in Brazil

Evidence of Gruesome 9,500-Year-Old Funerary Rites Found in Brazil

Evidence of complex and gruesome funeral rites found in the Lapa do Santo cave in Brazil have shocked researchers yet again. The researchers have discovered evidence of the mutilation of corpses,...
Sky Burial: Tibet’s Ancient Tradition for Honoring the Dead

Sky Burial: Tibet’s Ancient Tradition for Honoring the Dead

The tradition of Sky burials, which is also known by the name of ‘Celestial burial’, is particularly associated with the Tibetan culture, although it has existed in other civilizations throughout...
The Hidden Stories Behind Their Eyes: Unearthing the Secrets of Fayum Mummy Portraits

The Hidden Stories Behind Their Eyes: Unearthing the Secrets of Fayum Mummy Portraits

The famous Fayum mummy portraits of people who lived in Egypt during the Greco-Roman period contain many secrets and were very important for the dead buried with them. These magnificent portraits...
Deriv; Defaced bust of Alexander Severus. The head and bust were mutilated during Antiquity, the memory of the outlawed emperor was to be extinguished and portrait of Marino Faliero, Doge of Venice, painted over, as he was condemned to damnatio memoriae.

From Piso to the Baby Drusilla: The Legal Aspects of Damnation Memoriae - the Punishment of Non-Existence

The ancient Roman decree of damnatio memoriae (“damnation of one’s memory”) was a mark of great disgrace and a punishment, deemed worse than execution, for an ancient Roman. The object of the...
The Living Dead: Chinese Hopping Vampires

The Living Dead: Chinese Hopping Vampires

The Hopping Vampires (jiang shi) are a type of undead creature found in Chinese folklore. Although its Chinese name is often translated as ‘Chinese hopping vampire / zombie / ghost), its literal...
Exposing the Shady Secrets of Charon's Obols: Spirit Coins of Ancient Greece

Exposing the Shady Secrets of Charon's Obols: Spirit Coins of Ancient Greece

Charon’s obols were coins supposedly used by the ancient Greeks for funerary purposes. More precisely, the belief is that these coins were used by the shades (roughly equivalent to the concept of ‘...
Turtles May Have Been Feasted On as Part of Funeral Rites at Ancient Turkey Site

Turtles May Have Been Feasted On as Part of Funeral Rites at Ancient Turkey Site

During excavations at Kavuşan Höyük, six miles (9.7km) from the modern town of Bismil in Turkey, archaeologists discovered a mysterious burial. Apart from human remains, the grave includes several...
Funerary cones.

Examining Cryptic Grave Goods: What Are the Ancient Egyptian Funerary Cones?

Funerary cones are a type of funereal object from ancient Egypt. It is well known that the ancient Egyptians were extremely concerned about the afterlife, and that they did all they could to provide...
The Abusir boat.

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Human Origins

Adam and Eve (1640s) by Jacob Jordaens.
The common male and female ancestors of human beings are popularly known as “Genetic Adam” and “Genetic Eve.” A study conducted by researchers at the University of Sheffield claims all men can trace their origins to one male ancestor, ‘Adam’, who lived approximately 209,000 years ago. This places ‘Adam’ within the same time frame as ‘Eve’ - the ‘mother of all women’ – and provides evidence for the existence of a prehistoric ‘Adam and Eve.’

Ancient Places

The eerie mansion that is today known as Loftus Hall.
Driving along the isolated road that runs down the scenic Hook Peninsula in Ireland’s Ancient East, it is easy to spot the mansion that has earned itself the reputation as the most haunted house in Ireland. If ever a building fit the stereotype of a home haunted by its bloody and tragic past, this was it...

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)