All  

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 Meeting of Antony and Cleopatra’, by Lawrence Alma-Tadema.

Searching for the Lost Tomb of Antony and Cleopatra

Mark Antony and Cleopatra are among the most famous pairs of lovers from the ancient world. Following their defeat at the Battle of Actium in 31 BC, their final refuge from the victorious Octavian...
The unbroken seal on Tutankhamun’s tomb, 1922.

Tomb Curses of Ancient Egypt: Magical Incantations of the Dead

Nothing instilled more fear in the tomb raiders of times past, than the possibility of encountering a curse that warned of dire consequences for those that did not heed its warning. In ancient Egypt...
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...

Pages