All  

Human Origins

Ancient Origins presents how human origins are explained through three different perspectives: a) science and scientific evidence, b) religions and creation stories and c) folklore and mythology.

Akhenaten, relief of the pylons of the house of Panehsy, Chief Servitor of the Aten. It depicts Akhenaten making offerings to the Aten.

Pharaoh Akhenaten: A Different View of the Heretic King

Amenhotep IV, also known as the Pharaoh Akhenaten, was destined to be remembered for his attempt at a religious conversion of ancient Egypt; one that saw the old gods put aside and replaced by a...
Deriv; A brickwork lion on the ancient Babylonian Ishtar’s Gate and Pythagorean Proof

Ancient Babylonian use of the Pythagorean Theorem and its Three Dimensions

Very much like today, the Old Babylonians—20th to 16th centuries BC—had the need to understand and use what is now called the Pythagoras' (or Pythagorean) theorem. They applied it in very practical...
Deriv; Ancient Celtic dolmen from Poulnabrone, Ireland and carved Egyptian deity Thoth

Thoth’s Storm: New Evidence for Ancient Egyptians in Ireland?

When ancient Egypt and Ireland are spoken about in the same breath it usually results in the rolling of eyes, polite exits and the sound of murmurs citing pseudo-history and new age babble. At least...
Artist’s interpretation of the holy grail.

The Truth About the Holy Grail: Magical Chalices Around the World

Most people identify one special chalice as the only Holy Grail. Others point out that the Holy Grail legends composed in Europe during the 12 th to 15 th centuries enumerate more than ten different...
Amulet of a Ba. Egypt, Ptolemaic Period, 332-30 B.C. Jewelry and Adornments; amulets. Gold with inlays of lapis lazuli, turquoise, and steatite.

Warding Evil and Welcoming Luck: Protective Amulets of the Ancient World

In the past, human life was vulnerable to disaster; Disease, wars, famine, natural disasters and many other factors could easily claim the lives of individuals. For this reason, people sought all...
Two varying depictions of the same figure, Jesus. (Deriv)

Reconstructing Jesus: Using Science to Flesh out the Face of Religion

For being one of the most widely recognized men in the last 2,000 years, the true appearance of Jesus of Nazareth remains a mystery. Traditionally portrayed in western art as a be-robed, light-...
Hairstyles as depicted on an ancient sculpture of women in the Louvre, France.

Legendary Locks: Can Hair Act as a Sixth Sense, Protecting us from Danger?

Humans have ever styled their hair in a multitude of creative and symbolic ways, and the various cuts, colors and presentations reflected across the ages are nearly unlimited. But does hair serve us...
Strange beasts, mythological and real, graced the pages of ancient bestiaries.

Bestiary, The Book of Beasts: Compendiums of Medieval Monsters and Moral Lessons

During the Middle Ages the phoenix rose from its ashes to be reborn, dangerous dragons battled elephants to the death, and the pelican tore out its own breast to feed its young with its life’s blood—...
Traditional ceremonial dress at Mount Hagan, Papua New Guinea.

Why are humans unique? It’s the small things that count

Can there be any more important a question than, ‘How did we get here?’ Of course, I don’t mean those books we all gawked at as tweens desperate to understand our transforming pubescent bodies. I...
Artist’s depiction of ancient hominids.

How Ancient Hominid Interbreeding has Shaped Humans Today

Over the past half-decade, ancient DNA research has revealed some surprising aspects to our evolutionary history during the past 50,000 years. Perhaps the most startling of these has been the extent...
A portrait painted by John Cooke in 1915 showing scientists involved in the Piltdown man case: F. O. Barlow, G. Elliot Smith, Charles Dawson, Arthur Smith Woodward. Front row: A. S. Underwood, Arthur Keith, W. P. Pycraft, and Sir Ray Lankester.

Piltdown Man: The scandal that delayed the study of human origins by decades

For a long time in archaeology, and even in the popular media, there was discussion of a missing link in the archaeological/paleontological fossil record between apes and humans. In 1911, Englishman...
A mushroom ring creating a circle on the grass. These rings were believed to be portals to the fairy realm, and areas of danger.

Do you dare enter a fairy ring? The mythical mushroom portals of the supernatural

For thousands of years, the sudden appearance of a ring of mushrooms was a sure sign of otherworldly presences. These rings would seemingly appear overnight, or travel from one location to another,...
Cro-Magnon man communicating with each other and producing cave drawings

The Origins of Human Language: One of the Hardest Problems in Science

How human language began has been a question pestering researchers for centuries. One of the biggest issues with this topic is that empirical evidence is still lacking despite our great advances in...
The tooth before it was removed. Credit: Musee Homme de Tautavel

560,000-year-old tooth found by student may be one of the oldest human remains in France

A volunteer archaeologist by the name of Valentin Loescher, aged 20, has found an ancient tooth at the Arago Cave, near Tautavel, south western France. He was working as part of an archaeological dig...
Ogdoad - The Place of Truth. Relief at Deir el Medina.

The Infinite Ogdoad: The Creation Pantheon of Ancient Egypt and Predecessor Gods of the Old Kingdom

The Ogdoad, also called the Hehu or Infinites, were the celestial rulers of a cosmic age. Considered to have come long before the Egyptian religious system currently recognized, the Ogdoad were...
The Gristhorpe Man: A Bronze Age Skeleton

The Gristhorpe Man: A Bronze Age Skeleton with a Story to Tell

On the July 10, 1834, William Beswick excavated a barrow on his land in Gristhorpe, North Yorkshire, England. What he found gave him quite the surprise. Beswick discovered a coffin in the shape of a...

Pages