Japanese

A collection of shoes, presumably from those who have taken their lives, inside Aokigahara forest.

The Aokigahara Forest of Japan: Many Enter, But Few Walk Out Alive

The Aokigahara forest is situated on the north-western side of Japan’s famous Mount Fuji. Over the centuries, many people have entered the forest, but fewer have left it. This is because, sadly, the...
A Japanese samurai sword with Chinese script that reads "killed 107 people during the war in Nanjing, (China)" was used on Aug 18 by an attacker that slashed a military police guard at the Taiwan Presidential Palace.

Man Steals Samurai Sword From History Museum and Launches Attack Outside Taiwan Presidential Office

A Taiwanese man stole an antique samurai sword inscribed with the words “Nanjing battle, (this sword) killed 107 people” and used it to try to break into the Presidential Office, injuring a military...
Edited image from the Tokyo National Museum of the actor Nakazō Nakamura playing Goemon Ishikawa (or, in Japanese style, Ishikawa Goemon), a legendary ninja

Ninja Warrior Ishikawa Goemon: Charitable Hero or Violent Outlaw?

Ishikawa Goemon was a legendary Japanese outlaw and folk hero who lived during the 16th century. This outlaw has sometimes been compared to Robin Hood, as he stole from the rich to give to the poor...
Elaborate Ceremonial Samurai Helmet. The helmet was one of the most important parts of a Samurai’s armor.

The Brutality and Delicacy of Samurai Armor: Superior Protection with a God-like Aesthetic

The Samurai class was officially dissolved over 150 years ago. Nonetheless, the warriors’ elaborate armor is still recognized globally as an iconic emblem of Japanese military strength and virtue...
Sword Guards Confirm Samurai Warriors Secretly followed Christianity

Sword Guards Confirm Samurai Warriors Secretly followed Christianity

At least 48 sword guards used by samurai warriors during the feudal era belonged to hidden Christians. The artifacts are related to the early history of 16 th and 17 th century Japan, which saw the...
Page from Serat Babat Tanah Jawi, the Chronicle of Java, Inset: King Jayabaya

Jayabaya — The Seer King of Java who Predicted the Dutch and Japanese Occupation of Indonesia

Nostradamus (1503 – 1566) was best known as an author of prophesies. He is credited by some with predicting a number of events in world history, including the French Revolution, the atom bomb, the...
Goddess Council 4900-4750 BC Neolithic Culture of Cucuteni-Tripolye exposed in Cucuteni Museum of Piatra Neamt

Ancient Ink: How Tattoos Can Reveal Hidden Stories of Past Cultures

The English word tattoo is commonly said to be derived from the Polynesian word tatau or tatu . This Polynesian word means ‘to mark something’. Additionally, this word is an onomatopoeia, and is...
Nen-ho Makotokyo, head temple Kongoji Haiden, constructed by Kongo Gumi

Kongo Gumi: Oldest Continuously Operating Company survives 1,400 Years before Crash

For 1,400 years, Kongo Gumi was a successful Japanese company involved with the construction of spectacular Buddhist temples. Until its fall in 2006, it was the world’s oldest continuously operating...
Illustrations of Muramasa blades for the game 'Muramasa: The Demon Blade'

The Curse of the Samurai Muramasa Blades

In Nitobe Inazo’s 1899 work exploring the way of the samurai, Bushido, the Soul of Japan , the sword is dubbed as the ‘Soul of the Samurai’. As swords were so highly revered, the swordsmith’s work...
Japanese Sun goddess Amaterasu emerging from a Cave

The Age of the Gods: The Legendary History of Japan

Japanese mythology is collectively chronicled in the Kojiki , the oldest historical record written in Japan in 712 AD, and in the Nihon Shoki written in 720. As was common practice before the age of...
47 Ronin

47 Ronin: The Samurai Warriors that Sought to Avenge the Death of their Master

The Japanese samurai are arguably among the greatest warriors known in history. Their code of conduct was romanticized and popularized at the end of the 19 th century in Bushido: The Soul of Japan, a...
Rare ritual jars found buried under ancient ruins in Japan

Rare ritual jars found buried under ancient ruins in Japan intended to purify, bring eternal youth

Japanese archaeologists have made a surprising discovery beneath ancient ruins in Japan. An arrangement of coin-filled clay pots aligned to the cardinal directions have been found buried beneath the...
Baku: The Legend of the Dream Eater

Baku: The Legend of the Dream Eater

The baku, otherwise known as the ‘dream eater’, is a mythological being or spirit in Chinese and Japanese folklore which is said to devour nightmares. The baku cannot be summoned without caution,...
Sokushinbutsu - The ancient Japanese monks mummified to death

Sokushinbutsu and the ancient Japanese monks that mummified themselves to death

Over 1,000 years ago, a practice was pioneered by a Japanese priest named Kukai, which was intended to demonstrate the ultimate act of religious discipline and dedication – self-mummification. The...
Shipwreck in Japan from Mongol Invasion

Shipwreck found in Japan believed to be from 13th century Mongol invasion

During the 13th century, the Mongols, led by Kublai Khan, grandson of Genghis Khan, attempted two major invasions of Japan in 1274 and 1281 AD. However, on both occasions, a massive typhoon...
Mongol Invasion of Japan

Kamikaze – The Divine Winds that Saved Japan

During the 13th century, the Mongols, led by Kublai Khan, grandson of Genghis Khan, attempted two major invasions of Japan in 1274 and 1281 AD. However, on both occasions, a massive typhoon (tropical...

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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)