Myths & Legends

All over the world there are extraordinary stories—stories that once upon a time were believed to be true but are today limited to the sphere of ancient myths and legends. The question remains, are those myths and legends stories something that existed in the minds of our ancestors, or were they based on true events? It is true that most of those ancient myths and legends stories appear to the scientific world as fictitious products of vivid imaginations whose goals were purely to explain phenomena beyond their comprehension. Yet is it not arrogant to accuse our ancestors of being uncivilised and ignorant in one breath, then offer them praise and admiration over their monuments, buildings, art, sculptures, and societies in the next? This only proves that our modern society has two contradictory attitudes toward our past.

In this section we will explore some of the most amazing myths and legends from around the world—legends that may hold truths that can unlock the secrets of our ancient origins.

Were the Merovingians Descended from a Monster? Meet the Quinotaur

Were the Merovingians Descended from a Monster? Meet the Quinotaur

You’ve probably heard of a Minotaur (half-man, half-bull), but what about a Quinotaur? In early Frankish history, there was a “beast of Neptune,” which was said to look like a creature called a...
Impossible Quest to Have the Perfect Man? The 5 Imperfect Brothers of the Mahabharata

Impossible Quest to Have the Perfect Man? The 5 Imperfect Brothers of the Mahabharata

The two major Hindu epics, the Ramayana and the Mahabharata, still appear widely in popular folk drama, tales and art all over Southeast Asia with slight adaptations in all the myriad cultures of the...
Featured in Dozens of Operas, Films, TV Series and Books, What Makes the Legend of the White Snake so Compelling?

Featured in Dozens of Operas, Films, TV Series and Books, What Makes the Legend of the White Snake so Compelling?

The Legend of the White Snake (known also as ’Madame White Snake’) is a well-known legend from China. This fascinating tale is said to have been originally transmitted orally before being transformed...
Was Rama Based on a Real Historical Figure?

Was Rama Based on a Real Historical Figure?

Rama, one of the principle figures of the Hindu text, the Ramayana , is revered throughout India and the world. Many historians doubt that Rama was an actual person, however, many Hindus believe he...
Akseli Gallen-Kallela: The Departure of Väinämöinen

Väinämöinen: The Finnish Deity and Hero Who Inspired Tolkien to Create Gandalf and Tom Bombadil

J.R.R. Tolkien created remarkable stories that inspired Peter Jackson to make incredible movies. But it was his knowledge of literature and old legends which inspired the writer to use stories of...
The Fool with Two Demons / Master of the Ingeborg Psalter

Fantasies from Evil Spirits? Faeries in the Medieval Imagination

“There are also others who say that they see women and girls dancing by night whom they call elvish folk, or faeries, and they believe that these can transform both men and women or, by leaving...
Adventist Adventurer Claimed to Have Found Ark of the Covenant Beneath Crucifixion Site

Adventist Adventurer Claimed to Have Found Ark of the Covenant Beneath Crucifixion Site

One of the greatest mysteries for believers of the Judeo-Christian religions is the present location of the Ark of the Covenant, a chest that is said to contain the two stone tablets of the original...
The Devil Walks Among Us: The Myth of The Jersey Devil

The Devil Walks Among Us: The Myth of The Jersey Devil

Inhabiting the Pine Barrens of Southern New Jersey, United States, is a creature known as the Jersey Devil. This legendary being has been described as a kangaroo-like creature with the head of a goat...
The Chalice of Magdalene – Is this the Holy Grail?

The Chalice of Magdalene – Is this the Holy Grail?

On January 12th this year BBC News ran a story concerning Mary Magdalene, the woman depicted as a close companion of Jesus in the New Testament. The Vatican has elevated her status amongst the saints...
Ragnarok: The Rainbow Bridge that Connects Heaven and Earth at the Caribbean Basin – Part II

Ragnarok: The Rainbow Bridge that Connects Heaven and Earth at the Caribbean Basin – Part II

According to the Old Norse philologist Rudolf Simek and religious historian Mircea Eliade, Ragnarök marks the end of a cosmic cycle that will repeat ad infinitum. I argue that the Norsemen also...
Ragnarok: Norse Account of Strange & Wonderful Land Doomed to Destruction – Part I

Ragnarok: Norse Account of Strange & Wonderful Land Doomed to Destruction – Part I

Before the rise and spread of Christianity in the first millennium of the common era, paganism was the common religion of Europeans. Just as there is not a single Christian faith, but many...
Hanuman kneeling with tail encircling Rama and Sita in bed

The Sky, the Sun & the King: Mischievous and Divine Monkeys in Asian Myth

For the past few thousand years, the Indian Epic Ramayana has been among the most important literary and oral texts of South and Southeast Asia. Every autumn, Lord Rama's victory over the demon king...
Legends of Spring Heeled Jack, the Uncatchable Demon of Victorian England

Legends of Spring Heeled Jack, the Uncatchable Demon of Victorian England

Before Jack the Ripper began to kill, Victorian England was terrorized by another uncatchable demon: Spring Heeled Jack. It is not certain if Jack was a man or beast. Witnesses report him having long...
The Dramatic and Tragic Life of Ancient Greek Legend Daedalus

The Dramatic and Tragic Life of Ancient Greek Legend Daedalus

Daedalus is hailed as one of the most skilled artists and craftsmen in the Ancient Greek world. Said to be the son of the gods Athena and Hephaestus, as well as the son of the mortals Alcippe (...
Main: The Inca site of Machu Picchu. Inset: Golden sun

Inti, Sun God of the Inca, Spawned the First Rulers of An Unforgettable Empire

In the mythology / religious belief system of the Incas, Inti was the god of the Sun, and one of the most important deities in the Inca pantheon. As a solar deity, Inti is closely associated with...
The Descent of Inanna into the Underworld: A 5,500-Year-Old Literary Masterpiece

The Descent of Inanna into the Underworld: A 5,500-Year-Old Literary Masterpiece

The Descent of Inanna (known also as ‘Inanna’s Descent to the Netherworld / Underworld’) is a piece of work in the literary corpus of ancient Mesopotamia. This story, which was originally written in...

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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

Sumerian creation myth
Sumer , or the ‘land of civilized kings’, flourished in Mesopotamia, now modern-day Iraq, around 4500 BC. Sumerians created an advanced civilization with its own system of elaborate language and...

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.

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. 

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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)