Sex

Helen of Troy

Achieve Your “15 Minutes of Fame” & Ancient Lessons on How to be Famous: Celebrity Culture in the Ancient World

An early third century CE Greek inscription recovered from the ancient town of Oinoanda in southwest Turkey reveals that the Roman army relied on the services of Lucius Septimius Flavianus...
Detail; Prince Hanzoku terrorized by a nine-tailed fox

Quick as a Fox, Powerful as a Demon: Legendary Foxes and Their Trickster/Temptress Ways

The fox plays a wide range of roles in 42 out of the 358 of Aesop’s fables. It is generally described as a quick, intelligent and adaptable animal which no doubt led to its importance as a symbol of...
Pan

The Failed Sex God: The Horned God Pan and His Unrequited Lusts

"The bounteous Pan, the god of rural scenery, shepherdi, and huntsmen," as the poet Milton calls him, is the Greek god of woods and fields. Originally a pastoral god from Arcadia and depicted as a...
Historical records suggest that ancient Greek men liked sexual relations with gym-fit adolescents

The Truth About Sex in Ancient Greece

An exhibition at the British Museum promises to lift the lid on what beauty meant for the ancient Greeks. But while we gaze at the serene marble statues on display – straining male torsos and soft...
All images courtesy of Ashley Cowie

Sex Symbols of the Ancient World: Top Ten Sexually Explicit Caves, Mountains, Temples and Artifacts

If you are sensitive about matters pertaining to sex and sexuality it's probably best that you press the back button now. For those with a more exploratory attitude, what I hope you take away from...
Friedrich Paul Thumann, (1834-1908), "Cupid (Eros) and Psyche."

Four Ways to Love: How the Ancient Greeks Used Magic to Fulfil Hopes, Dreams, and Desires

For the ancient Greeks, 'love' was categorized into distinct words, each representing a different kind of infatuation; which is considerably different from our ideas of generalizing all aspects and...
Ancient Jade and Copper Sex Toys and Drinking Vessels Reveal Randy Chinese Royals

Ancient Jade and Copper Sex Toys and Drinking Vessels Reveal Randy Chinese Royals

You might call ancient Chinese royalty of the Han Dynasty jaded. Some aristocrats of around 2,000 years ago enjoyed a lusty sex life that included bronze dildos and jade butt plugs. And the presence...
Erotic temple art at Khajuraho

Khajuraho: The Sexiest Temples in India

The Khajuraho temple complex is a series of beautifully built and decorated buildings in Madhya Pradesh. Of the 85 temples originally built by the Chandela dynasty between 900 AD and 1130 AD, only 25...
Researchers Want to Get the Dirt on How Much Neanderthals and Modern Humans had Sex

Researchers Want to Get the Dirt on How Much Neanderthals and Modern Humans had Sex

Would you have sex with a Homo sapiens neanderthalensis if they hadn’t gone extinct? Your ancestors may have. Scientists are testing cave dirt for the presence of Neanderthal DNA from disintegrated...
The Fallen Women: Were Victorian Prostitutes Really Fallen?

The Fallen Women: Were Victorian Prostitutes Really Fallen?

The Victorian era is notoriously known as an era of female repression: sex, drugs and rock and roll—or rather, their Victorian counterparts—were believed to be highly taboo topics of conversation,...
Lost in Translation? Understandings and Misunderstandings about the Ancient Practice of “Sacred Prostitution”

Lost in Translation? Understandings and Misunderstandings about the Ancient Practice of “Sacred Prostitution”

In the modern world, the mere mention of “Sacred Prostitution” may receive raised eyebrows or disgusted grimaces. Evidently, this was also the case for the ancients as many ancient authors describe...
Like a Virgin? The Secret and Controversial Account of Mary, Mother of Jesus

Like a Virgin? The Secret and Controversial Account of Mary, Mother of Jesus

The Virgin Mary is one of the key symbols of Christianity, and a woman whose cult changed the world. However, she may be one of the most misunderstood biblical people. According to some researchers,...
A painting by Charles Le Brun depicting Alexander and Hephaestion (in red cloak), facing Porus, during the Battle of the Hydaspes.

What was the REAL relationship Between Alexander the Great and Hephaestion?

Alexander the Great was known as a womanizer – his list of romances quite extensive. However, some researchers suggest that he also fell in love with at least two men, one of them being Hephaestion,...
Pleasure, Procreation, and Punishment: Shocking Facts about Sex and Marriage in the Ancient World

Pleasure, Procreation, and Punishment: Shocking Facts about Sex and Marriage in the Ancient World

Much of what is considered normal in the present day might have been seen as shocking in the past and vice versa. This idea applies to many of the aspects of daily life, including customs related to...
Exposing the Secret Sex Lives of Famous Greeks and Romans in the Ancient World

Exposing the Secret Sex Lives of Famous Greeks and Romans in the Ancient World

In the ancient world, the public were not so privy to information about the scandalous sex lives of central societal figures. Still, sexual rumors have always existed and, in this way, historical...
Research Suggests that Monogamy Took Hold Due to Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Research Suggests that Monogamy Took Hold Due to Sexually Transmitted Diseases

In the animal world, monogamy refers to a pair that have an exclusive sexual relationship during the period of breeding and rearing of offspring. With respect to humans, it is a model of affective-...

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Fossils were viewed very differently in the past; usually through wilder... more fantastical interpretations.
Whenever a person thinks of fossils today, lively images of dinosaurs or other primordial beasts emerge within one's mind. Indeed, most people nowadays would connect fossils with museums, excavation digs, or research laboratories. However, people have viewed fossils very differently in the past; usually through wilder... more phantasmic interpretations.

Ancient Technology

New Revelations When 3,000-Year-Old Prosthetic Toe is Examined with Cutting Edge Technology
Egyptologists from the University of Basel have discovered details of production techniques and usage of one of the oldest prosthetic devices in history after re-examining it with the help of other experts. The find is nearly 3,000 years old and was discovered in a female burial from the necropolis of Sheikh ´Abd el-Qurna close to Luxor, Egypt.

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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.

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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)