Ming

The tomb of Tang Xianzu was discovered in the city of Fuzhou. (CFP) Insert: Tang Xianzu (1550-1616), Ming poet and dramatist, author of Peony Pavilion.

A Dramatic Ending: Tomb of the Tang Xianzu, ‘Shakespeare of the Orient’, Has Finally Been Found

Tang Xianzu was a notable playwright in China during the Ming Dynasty. Sometimes called the “Shakespeare of the East,” he is best known for four plays, often called the “Four Dreams” and “ The Peony...
Artist’s representation of Wei Zhongxian.

Wei Zhongxian: When China Yielded to the Terrifying Power of a Notorious Eunuch

Wei Zhongxian is often considered to be the most powerful and notorious eunuch in Chinese history. He had powers almost equivalent to that of the emperor’s and those who opposed him were ruthlessly...
Traditional architecture and modern shops in Pingyao, Shanxi Province, China.

Pingyao: What Gems of Architecture are Housed in this Traditional Imperial Chinese City?

The ancient city of Pingyao is a county-level city located in the center of China’s Shanxi Province. This ancient city has been described as an exceptionally well-preserved example of a traditional...
Chinese concubines

The Ming Dynasty Concubines: A Life of Abuse, Torture and Murder for Thousands of Women

The Chinese Ming Dynasty lasted for 276 years (1368 – 1644 AD), and has been described as “one of the greatest eras of orderly government and social stability in human history.” This dynasty became a...
600-Year-Old Buddha Statue Temporarily Emerges from the Waters, Reminding Locals of a Forgotten Past

600-Year-Old Buddha Statue Temporarily Emerges from the Waters, Reminding Locals of a Forgotten Past

The head of a Buddha statue estimated to be 600 years old recently emerged from a Chinese reservoir in Nancheng County, when water levels receded during renovation of a hydropower gate. A temple at...
The Legend of the Imperial Jade Seal of China, An Heirloom Lost in Time

The Legend of the Imperial Jade Seal of China, An Heirloom Lost in Time

Of the many renowned Chinese seals, none is more famous than the Heirloom Seal of the Realm. This artifact was carved out of the He Shi Bi jade - a stone which one man lost his feet for. The seal was...
Rare Ming Dynasty Banknote Found Hidden Inside a Chinese Sculpture

Rare Ming Dynasty Banknote Found Hidden Inside a Chinese Sculpture

A team of specialists working at the Australian auction house Mossgreen have discovered a rare Ming Dynasty banknote hidden within a Chinese wooden sculpture. The discovery happened unexpectedly as...
Zheng He: Famous Chinese Explorer

Zheng He: Famous Chinese Explorer Who Added Wealth and Power to the Ming Dynasty

Zheng He (also known as Cheng Ho) is one of the most famous admirals in Chinese history, and is best known for his treasure voyages. These voyages served to project the power and the wealth of the...
Murals uncovered in Ming Dynasty tomb

Stunning murals uncovered in Ming Dynasty tomb

Archaeologists in China have unearthed a Ming Dynasty tomb decorated with spectacular and finely-detailed paintings, according to a report in China.org.cn . Scientists are excited by the finding as...
The hand of the Ming Dynasty Mummy

The Accidental Mummy: the discovery of an impeccably preserved woman from the Ming Dynasty

When most people think of mummies, they picture the Egyptian culture, and sophisticated mummification procedures intended to create a bridge between life and death, resulting in preservation of the...

Top New Stories

Teotihuacan, Mexico.
Name one civilization located in the Americas that pre-dates the arrival of Europeans. You probably replied with the Aztecs, the Inca or perhaps the Maya. A new paper, published in De Gruyter's open access journal Open Archeology, by Michael E. Smith of Arizona State University shows how this view of American civilizations is narrow. It is entitled "The Teotihuacan Anomaly: The Historical Trajectory of Urban Design in Ancient Central Mexico."

Myths & Legends

A vase-scene from about 410 BC. Nimrod/Herakles, wearing his fearsome lion skin headdress, spins Noah/Nereus around and looks him straight in the eye. Noah gets the message and grimaces, grasping his scepter, a symbol of his rule - soon to be displaced in the post-Flood world by Nimrod/Herakles, whose visage reveals a stern smirk.
The Book of Genesis describes human history. Ancient Greek religious art depicts human history. While their viewpoints are opposite, the recounted events and characters match each other in convincing detail. This brief article focuses on how Greek religious art portrayed Noah, and how it portrayed Nimrod in his successful rebellion against Noah’s authority.

Human Origins

Ancient Technology

All images courtesy of Dr Rita Louise
The vajra is the most important ritual implement of Vajrayana Buddhism. In Sanskrit, the word vajra is defined as something hard or mighty, as in a diamond. It symbolizes an impenetrable, immovable and indestructible state of knowledge and enlightenment.

Ancient Places

The Tsar Bath of the Babolovo Palace
Babolovo (known also as Babolovka) Palace is a historical building located near the city of St. Petersburg, Russia. This palace was built in towards the end of the 18th century, during the reign of Catherine II of Russia (also commonly known as Catherine the Great).

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)