Medicine

Ayurvedic medicine. Indian Watercolour: 'Man of the Medical caste, masseuse’.

Ancient Text Prescribing Ways to Conceive a Baby Boy Included in New University Textbook in India

A new university textbook in India has included a controversial, ancient recipe that supposedly formulates a sure way to conceive a boy. The text encourages women who want to conceive a boy to find...
Relief of a seated poet (Menander) with masks of New Comedy, 1st century B.C. – early 1st century AD.

Decapitation? No Problem. The Magic of Restoration: Ancient Myths and Practices of Plastic Surgery

Plastic surgery, not just a modern practice, has always existed and was shrouded in mystery, magic, and eroticism. An Indian physician named Sushruta, who was widely regarded in India as the “father...
‘Woman With Brown Hair Near White Painted Wall’ and division of the face according to Mian Xiang

Can Traditional Chinese Face Reading Provide Insight on Your Future, Health, and Character?

面相 (‘miàn xiàng’, or less accurately as ‘mien shiang’) is a type of Chinese divination that relies on the observation of a person’s facial features. Apart from divining an individual’s future,...
Reenactment of Mongol battle

How Did They Do It? Masters of the Steppe: Battlefield Medicine and Gruesome Cures—Part III

Much is known about the ancient Mongol military and their incredible victories on the battlefield, but little is ever discussed about their arms, armor, horses, and logistics. What gear did they use...
Doctors giving medicine.

Medieval Medical Books Could Hold the Recipe for New Antibiotics

For a long time, medieval medicine has been dismissed as irrelevant. This time period is popularly referred to as the “Dark Ages,” which erroneously suggests that it was unenlightened by science or...
Shennong: The God-King of Chinese Medicine and Agriculture

Shennong: The God-King of Chinese Medicine and Agriculture

Shennong, which means “God farmer” or “God peasant”, is a deity in Chinese religion. He is a mythical sage healer and ruler of prehistoric China. Shennong is also known as Wugushen “five grains,” or...
Herbs to Kill or Heal? Was this 17th Century Faux-Book for a Poisoner or Apothecary?

Herbs to Kill or Heal? Was this 17th Century Faux-Book for a Poisoner or Apothecary?

When photos of the faux-book first began to circulate online it was considered a hoax. The image was featured on the ArtefactPorn subreddit and commenters quickly denounced it as a fake, a mere...
An artist’s imaginary depiction of a pharaoh burning herbs (possibly cannabis or blue lotus) in a ritual.

A Versatile Plant: What Were the Many Uses of Cannabis in Ancient Egypt?

Cannabis is widely considered to be one of the most widespread options when it comes to medicinal herbs. However, in ancient times the plant’s popularity was far greater, and its use much more common...
Said to Cure Everything but Death, These Seeds are an Ancient Miracle Cure

Said to Cure Everything but Death, These Seeds are an Ancient Miracle Cure

The black cumin seed or “Nigella Sativa” has been revered as a miracle cure for a vast amount of illnesses and ailments throughout the ages and across many cultures. The plant is indigenous to the...
The Extraction of the Stone of Madness by Hieronymus Bosch

Forget Folk Remedies, Medieval Europe Spawned a Golden Age of Medical Theory

It’s often said that there was no tradition of scientific medicine in medieval times. According to the usual narrative of the history of progress, medicine in the European Middle Ages – from around...
Making Medieval Magic: Countering Infections and Poison with Nine Potent Herbs

Making Medieval Magic: Countering Infections and Poison with Nine Potent Herbs

Many old spells have been lost or forgotten over the years, but careful readers of medieval books can still recognize some of them tucked within old tomes. There is a spell from a 10th-century book...
Ancient Chinese Remedy Could Wipe Out Tuberculosis

Ancient Chinese Remedy Could Wipe Out Tuberculosis

A team of researchers have recently found that centuries-old herbal medicine, discovered by Chinese scientists to cure malaria, could also aid in tuberculosis treatment and even slow drug resistance...
The Story of the Midgard Serpent: A Mythological Tailspin

The Story of the Midgard Serpent: A Mythological Tailspin

In Teutonic mythology the Middle Earth was wrapped round by the Midgard Serpent. Above this the gods built their mansions in the sky. Yet, curiously, in the lower world there lived all those people...
Aerial view of Thebes' Ramesseum, showing pylons and secondary buildings and the Medical Papyri.

Revealing the Ramesseum Medical Papyri and Other Remarkable Finds from the Temple of Ramesses II

The mortuary temple of Ramesses II is one of the most magnificent temples in the Theban necropolis in Upper Egypt. It was discovered by Jean-Francois Champollion, the same man who deciphered the...
1,300-Year-Old Antidepressant Pills Discovered in Ancient Center for Drug Production in Turkey

1,300-Year-Old Antidepressant Pills Discovered in Ancient Center for Drug Production in Turkey

Seven hundred small glass and ceramic bottles containing ancient medicines have been discovered during excavations in Turkey. The medications include 1,300-year-old antidepressant pills and drugs for...
Andreas Vesalius: The Medieval Physician Who Loved Dissecting Humans

Andreas Vesalius: The Medieval Physician Who Loved Dissecting Humans

Andreas Vesalius was a physician and anatomist who lived during the 16th century AD. Up until this point of time, the standard authority on anatomy was the work of Galen, a 2nd / 3rd century Greek...

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Top New Stories

The Maiden Tower is the most recognized structure in the Old City of Baku, Azerbaijan.
“At the beginning of the 1st millennium BC, there was raised an 8-storied towered temple (Maiden’s Tower) devoted to seven gods, grandiose for those day… [possessing] seven sacred levels, [and] wall-recessed altars with seven-colored fires burning in honor of the pantheon of gods of Ahura Mazda or Mithra”. - Professor Davud Akhundov.

Human Origins

Detail of ‘God creating the Sun, the Moon and the Stars’ by Jan Brueghel the Younger.
Although most mainstream scientists and most of the developed world now accept the theory of evolution and the scientifically established age of Earth and the universe, there is still a group of people that resist the status quo and insist, based on a particular literal interpretation of Genesis 1-11 in the Hebrew Bible

Ancient Technology

Representation of an ancient Egyptian chariot.
The wheel can be considered mankind’s most important invention, the utility of which is still applied in multiple spheres of our daily life. While most other inventions have been derived from nature itself, the wheel is 100% a product of human imagination. Even today, it would be difficult to imagine what it would be like without wheels, since movement as we know it would be undeniably impossible.

Ancient Places

The Maiden Tower is the most recognized structure in the Old City of Baku, Azerbaijan.
“At the beginning of the 1st millennium BC, there was raised an 8-storied towered temple (Maiden’s Tower) devoted to seven gods, grandiose for those day… [possessing] seven sacred levels, [and] wall-recessed altars with seven-colored fires burning in honor of the pantheon of gods of Ahura Mazda or Mithra”. - Professor Davud Akhundov.

Opinion

El Caracol Observatory at Chichen Itza (Wright Reading/CC BY-NC 2.0) and Composite 3D laser scan image of El Caracol from above
In 1526, the Spanish conquistador Francisco de Montejo arrived on the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico and found most of the great Maya cities deeply eroded and unoccupied. Many generations removed from the master builders, engineers, and scientists who conceived and built the cities, the remaining Maya they encountered had degenerated into waring groups who practiced blood rituals and human sacrifice.

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)