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.

The Wold Newton Meteorite: An Extraordinary Stone and the Birth of a Superhero

The Wold Newton Meteorite: An Extraordinary Stone and the Birth of a Superhero

In a remote part of North-East England called the Yorkshire Wolds, an incident took place on Sunday 13th December 1795 that not only became talking point of late 18th century London society but also...
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...
Legends of Mount Shasta: “The Abode of the Devil” Part 4 – Investigating the Castle Crags Petroglyphs

Legends of Mount Shasta: “The Abode of the Devil” Part 4 – Investigating the Castle Crags Petroglyphs

In the previous articles about Mount Shasta's J.C. Brown mystery, we explored the prehistoric lore of the area, which at face-value could suggest that Brown's claim of discovering a cave containing...
A Heart as Cold as Ice? The Japanese Legend of Yuki-onna, the Beautiful Yet Dangerous Snow Woman

A Heart as Cold as Ice? The Japanese Legend of Yuki-onna, the Beautiful Yet Dangerous Snow Woman

The legend of Yuki-onna (the snow woman) comes from The Land of the Rising Sun. This beautiful but dangerous character may be a personification of death in a severe snow storm. Japanese legends do...
A Boy, to Vei, to Venus? Piecing Together the Puzzle of the Etruscan Orvieto Necropolis

A Boy, to Vei, to Venus? Piecing Together the Puzzle of the Etruscan Orvieto Necropolis

Ancient Etruscan deities continue to puzzle researchers. Unveiling the truth about their cults and positions in the pantheon took decades, yet they still protect some of their secrets. One of the...
Descent to the Underworld: The Little-Known Practices and Symbols in Ancient Mythology of the Great Below

Descent to the Underworld: The Little-Known Practices and Symbols in Ancient Mythology of the Great Below

“A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder: fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive victory is won: the hero comes back from this mysterious...
Anahita and Ishtar: Connections to the Planet Venus

Anahita and Ishtar: Connections to the Planet Venus

Anahita was a goddess associated with water, fertility, wisdom, warfare, and eventually the planet Venus. During the Achaemenid dynasty in Persia, she became incorporated into the Zoroastrian...
Aine: A Radiant Celtic Goddess of Love, Summer, and Sovereignty

Aine: A Radiant Celtic Goddess of Love, Summer, and Sovereignty

Aine is often remembered as a Celtic goddess of love. But she was also a deity of wealth, sovereignty, and the summer. Her sensitive and joyful personality brought her many followers in the Celtic...
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: A History of Monsters, from Werewolves to Hippogriffs

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: A History of Monsters, from Werewolves to Hippogriffs

The latest instalment in the Harry Potter franchise, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them , sees wizard Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) entering New York in 1926, smuggling a briefcase full of...
The Mythology of Nut, Mother of Gods

The Mythology of Nut, Mother of Gods

One of the oldest goddesses in Egyptian mythology is Nut, the goddess of the sky ( nut means ‘sky’ in the ancient Egyptian language). It was believed that that the sky is, in fact, a star-covered...
The legend of The Hell House College of St Mary’s

The legend of The Hell House College of St Mary’s

Hell House College is the nickname given to St. Mary’s College in Ilchester, Maryland (The college is also sometimes referred to as ‘Creepy College’). This college was originally set up as a Roman...
Twins, Kings and Horses: Symbols of the Divine Twins in Ancient Mythology

Twins, Kings and Horses: Symbols of the Divine Twins in Ancient Mythology

The ancient figures of the “Divine Twins” are recognizable throughout the world with minor variations of the same themes. They are usually depicted as the sons of the Sky God, or even having dual...
A Cycle of Life and Death: Slavic Goddesses Morana and Vesna

A Cycle of Life and Death: Slavic Goddesses Morana and Vesna

Forever intertwined, Morana, goddess of winter and death, and Vesna, goddess of spring and rebirth, could not exist without each other. However, they could not possibly exist in the same place at the...
Features The Return of the Crusader by Karl Friedrich Lessing, and an illustration from Jack the Giant Killer

Tom Hickathrift - the Crusader who became Jack the Giant Killer

Many of you will be familiar with the legend or fairy-tale of Jack the Giant Killer and, in England, the popular Christmas pantomime Jack and the Beanstalk . But, Jack is a relatively recent...
The Legend of the Blair Witch: Myths that Created an Infamous Curse

The Legend of the Blair Witch: Myths that Created an Infamous Curse

When most people hear about the Blair witch, images come to mind of a horror film which was released in 1999 with a very low production budget. The movie was directed by Daniel Myrick and Eduardo...
Deliver Us From Evil: How Ancient People Protected Their Houses from Bad Spirits and Bad Luck?

Deliver Us From Evil: How Ancient People Protected Their Houses from Bad Spirits and Bad Luck?

Some people say it is not real, but try to tell them that bad spirits just entered their houses. They will feel insane and try to ignore it, but the unpleasant feeling will stay. In this case people...

Pages

Human Origins

The lower jaw of the 7.175 million-year-old Graecopithecus freybergi (El Graeco) from Pyrgos Vassilissis, Greece (today in metropolitan Athens).
A new analysis of two 7.2 million-year-old fossils belonging to a hominin species nicknamed “El Graeco” from Mediterranean Europe, suggests that mankind emerged in Europe and not in Africa. The new study could reshape history, since it openly challenges the “out of Africa theory.”

Ancient Technology

The Antikythera Mechanism, National Archaeological Museum, Athens, Greece
Every time ancient Greece is mentioned most people automatically think of democracy, the Olympic Games, mythology and philosophy. It seems that not many are aware of how advanced the ancient Greeks were on a technological level as well and the Antikythera Mechanism, known as the world’s first analog computer, is the brightest example of all.

Ancient Places

View of the “Cueva del Pirul”, one of the largest systems of interconnected caves to the East of the Pyramid of the Sun. One can notice the many rough pillars left to support the roof and a number of side passages branching out in different directions.
Few of the modern visitors to Teotihuacan are aware of the vast and mysterious underworld of caves and man-made tunnels that extends under much of the ancient site and for miles around. The existence of these tunnels has been known for centuries, but not even the most recent research has been able to solve the mystery of their origin and purpose. Very much like at Giza, in Egypt, these tunnels are rumored to connect all the main pyramids by means of underground passageways, and perhaps even lead to the records of a lost civilization.

Opinion

View of the “Cueva del Pirul”, one of the largest systems of interconnected caves to the East of the Pyramid of the Sun. One can notice the many rough pillars left to support the roof and a number of side passages branching out in different directions.
Few of the modern visitors to Teotihuacan are aware of the vast and mysterious underworld of caves and man-made tunnels that extends under much of the ancient site and for miles around. The existence of these tunnels has been known for centuries, but not even the most recent research has been able to solve the mystery of their origin and purpose. Very much like at Giza, in Egypt, these tunnels are rumored to connect all the main pyramids by means of underground passageways, and perhaps even lead to the records of a lost civilization.

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)