History

From the powerful civilizations of Egypt, Mesopotamia, and Indus Valley, to the fearsome yet sophisticated society of the Vikings, the ancient world was a surprising and challenging place. Here we feature some of the most seminal and influential events and people throughout history, that have helped shape the world we know today.

The Byzantine emperor Basil I (left) with his son Leo VI. Uploaded by Ghirlandajo, 2005

The Forgotten Renaissance: The Successes of the Macedonian Dynasty

The Macedonian Dynasty was relatively short lived in the grand scheme of dynasties, yet it sent waves throughout the Byzantine Empire. Under them, previously lost territories were regained, the...
Relief on the Miègeville's gate of the basilica Saint-Sernin in Toulouse. The relief shows Simon magus, demons, and birth of the wine.

The Strange Life of Simon Magus, Christian, Pagan, Magician, and Sorcerer

Simon the Magician, otherwise known as Simon Magus, comes down through history predominately from the New Testament account, Acts of the Apostles 8:9-24 , with all other ancient sources pertaining to...
Image from an illuminated manuscript depicting a Byzantine siege of a citadel. A tactic of ancient biological warfare was to hurl infected dead bodies over city walls.

The Devastating and Diabolical Ancient Origins of Biological Warfare

History paints a bleak picture of the devastating effects that disease, contamination, or poison can have on humans. But with those hard lessons came experience and knowledge, and mankind has...
Screenshot from the movie 300 on the Spartan War which used Helots in combat on many occasions.

The Helots: Slave Warriors of Ancient Sparta

The ancient Greek city state of Sparta had a social hierarchy that was different from many of its neighbors. The top of the social pyramid was occupied by the two kings, whose powers were checked by...
Self-Mummification

Dying to Live Forever: The Reasons behind Self-Mummification

Sunada Tetsu (1768-1829) was arguably the most famous individual who successfully mummified himself. Early in life, he was not religiously inclined. He loved a prostitute in Akagawa, Tsuruoka’s...
Ulama, The Mesoamerican Ball Game

Ulama, The Mesoamerican Ball Game: Deadly Sport of the Ancient Americas

The Mesoamerican ball game is the oldest known team sport in the world. It was practiced by ancient Pre-Columbian cultures of Central America and played almost a millennium before the establishment...
Romeo and Juliet by Ford Madox Brown, 1870

Romeo and Juliet: Not a Shakespearean Tale After All

William Shakespeare's world renowned Romeo and Juliet (written sometime between 1591 and 1595) stands in the historical record as one of the greatest love stories ever written. It is most interesting...
Depiction of the Byzantine Army in full force

The Varangian Guard: Berserkers of the Byzantine Empire

Read Part 1 The tale of the Varangians continues in its prime in the form of the Varangian Guard, a prominent and selective Byzantine army arising in the tenth century. Composed of the Scandinavian...
Pope Joan gives birth during a Church procession

Pope Joan: The Female Pope whose Real Gender was Revealed after she Gave Birth in a Procession

The origins of the Papacy can be traced to St. Peter, one of the original disciples of Jesus. The current pope, Francis I, is the 265 th successor of St. Peter. Needless to say, all 266 popes are...
The Invitation of the Varangians: Rurik and his brothers Sineus and Truvor arrive at the lands of the Ilmen Slavs at Staraya Ladoga.

Vikings in Byzantium: The Varangians and their Fearless Conquests

It is relatively well known that the Vikings were some of history's greatest travelers, traders, and mercenaries. Their reach extended far, as they are credited with finding North America and...
This artwork, realized in 1998 by the Veronese painter Davide Tonato, is an interpretation of the traditional attributes of Maat, Egyptian Goddess of the justice.

Maat: The Ancient Egyptian Goddess of Truth, Justice and Morality

Maat, also known as Ma’at or Mayet, was a female goddess in the ancient Egyptian religion who represented truth, justice, balance and morality. The daughter of the Egyptian sun deity Ra and wife of...
Artist's impression of Teuta, Queen of the Illyrian Ardiaei tribe

The Fierce Queen of the Illyrians: Teuta the Untameable

Following the defeat of Carthage in the First Punic War in 241 BC, the Roman Republic became a dominant naval power in the Mediterranean. Nevertheless, Rome’s control of the seas was not absolute. To...
King David is anointed by the prophet Samuel to be the future King of Israel. The Prophet Samuel is believed by some to be the Ascended Master Saint Germaine.

The Immortal Count of Saint Germaine: Ascended Master of Ancient Wisdom

Read Part 1 The Count of Saint-Germaine claimed many times to be immortal, apparently already three hundred years old by the time of his appearance in the 1700s. However, there is another more...
The Enigmatic Comte Saint Germaine

The Historical Count of Saint-Germaine: Elusive, Enigmatic and Eternal

The Count of Saint-Germaine is undoubtedly one of the most enigmatic characters from history. Considered by many to be either immortal or continuously reincarnated, he survives in all accounts as a...
Egyptian relief of the invading Sea Peoples

The Battle of the Delta: Ramses III saves Egypt from the People of the Sea

The ancient Egyptian pharaohs often commemorated military victories over their enemies by having them depicted on the walls of great monuments. One of the most famous conflicts recorded on the walls...
Shinto painting from manuscript of Todaiji, Nara, Japan

Purification as the Core of the Ancient Shinto Faith

A ritual based religion, Shintoism is defined as "the way of the gods" in Japan, from the Chinese Shendao. It is the indigenous religion of the country, and survives today as the state religion,...

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Ancient Technology

Mammoth in the Royal BC Museum in Victoria (Canada). The display is from 1979, and the fur is musk ox hair.
In Sivershchina, close to the village of Mizyn in Ukraine is one of the oldest and most unique settlements of humans – and it was discovered in a parking lot. The now well-known archaeological site, known plainly as the Mizyn parking lot, dates back 18-20 thousand years.

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)