Pope

‘The Last Judgment’ triptych (open) (1467-1471) by Hans Memling.

Prophecy of the Popes: Are We Reaching the End of Days?

For thousands of years, people all over the ancient world claimed to have the powers of foresight. In 1143, The Prophecy of the Popes was created - listing the future attributes of the 112 pontiffs...
Bologna, San Petronio: Meridian of Giandomenico Cassini

Synchronizing Science and Religion? Why We Find Solar Observatories and Astronomical Features in Churches

It is often assumed that science and faith are always at loggerheads with each other. This, however, is a common misconception, as there are numerous instances demonstrating the co-existence and co-...
Frederick Barbarossa awards the city of Haarlem with a sword for its shield or coat-of-arms. By Pieter de Greber, 1630.

Frederick I Barbarossa: A Megalomaniac Roman Emperor On a Crusade for Power

Some people believe they were born for greatness but fall short and some go on to exceed all expectations. Frederick I Barbarossa falls into the second category. His ambition for power was limitless...
Orant, Catacomb of Priscilla. It has been argued that these catacombs provide evidence for women having a stronger role in early Christianity, perhaps even in the priesthood.

No Girls Allowed? Debate for Women in the Christian Priesthood Rages On

In many countries, laws prohibit employers from discriminating based on sex. However, exemptions to this law are often made for religious orders. The Roman Catholic Church is adamant that women...
Detail of a self-portrait of Raphael, aged approximately 23.

Raphael: A Renaissance Artist More Versatile than Michelangelo and More Prolific than Leonardo?

Raffaello Sanzio da Urbino (known more commonly as Raphael) was a painter and architect who lived in Italy between the late 15th and early 16th centuries, during a period known as the High...
The Roman Origins of Our Modern Calendar - Influenced by Popes, Generals, Emperors and Gods

The Roman Origins of Our Modern Calendar - Influenced by Popes, Generals, Emperors and Gods

The most widely used calendar around the world today is called the Gregorian calendar. It was introduced by Pope Gregory XIII in the 16th century CE and was a modification of an ancient Roman...
Cadaver Synod: The Exhumed Corpse of Pope Formosus That Was Put on Trial

Cadaver Synod: The Exhumed Corpse of Pope Formosus That Was Put on Trial

The 9 th and 10 th centuries AD were turbulent years for the papacy of Rome. Caught up in the political machinations of Europe, the Vatican saw a rapid succession of popes come and go. The situation...
A War That Pail-s in Comparison to Any Other: The Medieval Bucket War

A War That Pail-s in Comparison to Any Other: The Medieval Bucket War

The medieval city-states of northern Italy were more competitive than any given Kardashian battling her sister for more Snapchat followers. Time and again, the cities of Modena and Bologna put their...
Guido of Arezzo.

Musical Monk: Guido of Arezzo and His Impact on the History of Music

Guido of Arezzo was a monk who lived during the Middle Ages, and may be considered as one of the most influential figures in the history of modern music. During the Middle Ages, the monastery was one...
 More details View of inside the Passetto, the secret passage between Vatican City and Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome, Italy

The Passetto: Escape Route of Popes in Times Past

The Passetto di Borgo (also known simply as the Passetto, which may be translated as a small passage ) is a corridor that connects the Vatican City, more specifically St. Peter’s Basilica, with the...
San Petronio Basilica, Bologna, Italy.

The Basilica of San Petronio: The Biggest Church in the World…if the Pope Had Allowed it

The Basilica of San Petronio is one of the most important churches in Bologna, the largest city (and the capital) of the northern Italian administrative region of Emilia-Romagna. The basilica is...
Deriv; Ordination of Jacques de Molay in 1265 as a Knight Templar, at the Beaune commandery and the Chinon Parchment.

The Guilt of the Gnostic Knights Templar: The Chinon Parchment

The recently discovered Chinon Parchment of the Vatican Library in 2001 has brought a level of redemption to the Knights Templar. It does not discount their “heretical” activities, which were...
The execution Jacques de Molay.

The Powerful Curse of Jacques de Molay, the Last Grand Master of Templars

On March 18, 1314, Jacques de Molay and a few other Templars, after enduring torture and many other humiliations, were sent to death. De Molay was an old man, tired with life and proud of his...
Pope Gregory XIII, portrait by Lavinia Fontana (Public Domain) A Page from a 1584 version of the Gregorian Calendar.

New Year, Old Calendar: The Origins and Controversy of the Gregorian Calendar

The most commonly used civil calendar today is known as the Gregorian calendar, which is also called the Western calendar, or the Christian calendar. This calendar was named after Pope Gregory XIII,...
A reenactor dresses as a medieval pilgrim.

Would you take a Medieval Journey? Man recreates Pilgrimage across England with period supplies only

Many speak of observing the Christmas holidays with a return to more traditional or spiritual celebrations, but one man is taking that to heart by going on a medieval pilgrimage across England. He is...
This postcard shows a Pueblo Indian man with San Ildefonso Black Pottery. The postcard was published between 1930 and 1945.

335 years ago Indians drove out the Spanish out of New Mexico and secured their culture for posterity

August 10, 2015, marked the 335 th anniversary of the Pueblo Indian uprising, during which they expelled the Spanish usurpers and tormentors from New Mexico. Modern Pueblo Indians call August 10...

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Top New Stories

A fragment of a wall painting showing two lovers in bed from the House of L Caecilius Jucundus in Pompeii, now at Naples National Archaeological Museum.
Rarely does L.P. Hartley’s dictum that “the past is a foreign country” hold more firmly than in the area of sexuality in classical art. Erotic images and depictions of genitalia, the phallus in particular, were incredibly popular motifs across a wide range of media in ancient Greece and Rome.

Myths & Legends

The Last of the Siberian Unicorns: What Happened to the Mammoth-Sized One-Horned Beasts of Legend?
Elasmotherium, also known as the Giant Rhinoceros or the Giant Siberian Unicorn, is an extinct species of rhino that lived in the Eurasian area in the Late Pliocene and Pleistocene eras. They have been documented from 2.6 million years ago, but the most recent fossils come from around 29,000 years ago.

Ancient Technology

Yacouba Sawadogo planting.
Desertification is a serious problem facing numerous countries in the world today. Various measures have been taken to counter the negative effects, with some providing better results than others. A farmer in Burkina Faso looked to his ancestors and came up with an innovative solution.

Ancient Places

Stonehenge at night.
In the 1960s, a portion of a ditch excavated into chalk bedrock west of the henge at Stonehenge was discovered during construction for the pedestrian underpass that provided access to Stonehenge until a year ago. By 2014, geophysical testing confirmed that the ditch stretches over 900 meters (2952.7 ft.) from southwest of the Stonehenge henge to a point near the south ditch line of the Greater Cursus, northwest of Stonehenge.

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)