tradition

Kukeri is a type of wild man in Bulgaria. Rituals with this ‘beast’ are believed to scare away evil spirits.

Beasts of the Pagan Wild Man Ritual Come in All Shapes and Sizes

The wild man is a creature found in various pagan traditions across Europe. Generally speaking, a wild man is a man dressed up in a beast-like costume for certain pagan rituals, which were normally...
Sea Silk

One Person Left on Earth Knows the Ancient Secret of Producing Sea Silk

Sea silk is a highly-precious fabric that is so rare only one woman left on earth knows the secret to its creation. Whilst silk is famously known to be obtained from the cocoons of the mulberry...
Reog Ponorogo performer and spectators.

The Reog Ponorogo: A Dance of Rebellion Which Changed History

A fearsome lion monster with peacock feathers on its head charged and twirled about as cavalrymen curtseyed and jumped by. The onlookers were entranced with the story playing out in front of them...
Lord Buddha

Siddhartha Gautama: How The Father of Buddhism Walked From Suffering to Enlightenment

Siddhartha Gautama, also known as the Buddha or “Enlightened One,” is probably one of the most influential individuals to come out of India through the incidental founding of Buddhism. Siddhartha...
An Illustration of a Viking boat burial.

1,000-year-old Viking Boat Burial Discovered Under Market Square in Norway

A millennium-old Viking boat grave with bones and sheet bronze still inside has been discovered under a market square in Norway. The grave was found during one of the final days of excavations by the...
Statue of an Iroquois man, Montreal, Quebec, Canada. (Theresa O’Connor/CC BY-SA 2.0) and background, Hiawatha by Thomas Eakins, 1874. (Public Domain);Deriv.

Thunder god and Skywoman – Myth and History of the Iroquois: Exploring a First Nations Tradition

Every year, western scholars look with wonder to the ancient mythologies, ruins, and histories of such places as Egypt, Greece, and the Near East. Due to the considerable efforts of professional and...
The Marriage of St. Ursula and Prince Conan, 1522

Marriage: Is the Sacred Bond a Result of Social Evolution or Deliberate Design?

Getting married is an age-old celebration, which commemorates the joining of two individuals together in matrimony. For many in today’s society it represents picking out invitations, dresses,...
Piles of clamshells (Schvin/CC BY 2.0), background: men in a Curragh, a skin boat (WilliamMurphy/CC BY-SA 2.0);Deriv.

Seafarers and Shell Rings: Strange Formations on the American Coast a Hallmark of Faraway Visitors?

Just south of Awendaw, South Carolina, in the Francis Marion National Forest, is an example of a type of architectural artifact that still baffles archaeologists. For every explanation someone offers...
‘Evil eye.’

Rings, Gestures, and Phallus Talismans: The Evil Eye and Ancient Ways to Ward Off Its Power

For over 5000 years people have worried that a look of envy or dislike would inflict injury, bad luck, or even death on the recipient. People would wear specific items of jewelry or other talismans...
The Palace at Sayil, a Maya city on the Gulf of Mexico side of the Yucatan Peninsula. Heavily damaged by ancient floods, complete reconstruction is impossible because of scattered stoneworks.

The Maya Controversy: Startling New Evidence for an Antediluvian People who Influenced the World

The oral traditions of Native Americans are historical content that most academics refuse to reference, even in the face of startlingly accurate perceptions of early earth conditions and human...
Artistic rendering of Quantum Particles, man performing as a shaman (Public Domain); Deriv.

Did the Ancients Communicate with Worlds Unknown? Dowsing for Origins in Quantum Reality

Who are we? Where did we come from? How did we evolve to be the way we are? Traditionally, we tend to answer these questions by aligning ourselves with one of three different camps: The Religious...
The eembuvi-plaits of Mbalantu women. Photo: CHL Hahn, Collection Antje Otto

The Braided Rapunzels of Namibia: Every Stage of Life is Reflected in Their Hair

Not everyone desires floor-length hair, but if you do, you can take some lessons from the Mbalantu women of Namibia in Africa, who are renowned for their incredibly long, braided hair. Throughout the...
Dramatic mask with tusks and feathers, Ninghai, Zhejiang, China

Ferocious Beast-Head Masks, Heavy Robes & Swirling Colors: What are the Unspoken Messages in Ancient Chinese Opera?

In “Civilization of China” (1911), Herbert Giles wrote that “for pleasure pure and simple, independent of gains and losses, the theater occupies the warmest place in every Chinaman's heart”. The fact...
Carved into the rock face, with a plaster façade, is Abba Yohani Church

Hidden Religion: Abba Yohani and the Clandestine Cave Churches of Ethiopia

Ethiopia is a land full of ancient relics. For example, the fossil remains of the earliest hominins were found in Ethiopia. The oldest stone tools known to have been intelligently manufactured by...
‘Light and Structure’ - Reconstruction of Viking Longhouse: Central Jutland, Denmark.

Why Would You Cremate and Bury Your Home? A Bizarre Viking Ritual Explained

The Vikings had a very bizarre tradition that might be totally unique: they buried their own homes. From the Bronze Age until the Viking Age, historians have noted that burial mounds were placed on...
Members of the archeology team, from left to right, John Maxwell, Alisha Gauvreau, and Seonaid Duffield work on excavating the site.

14,000 Old Heiltsuk Village Site Found in British Columbia. Could it be the Oldest in North America?

An ancient archaeological discovery on Triquet Island on B.C.'s Central Coast affirms the Heiltsuk Nation’s oral tales. The newly found village site is estimated to be three times as old as the Great...

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Myths & Legends

Male and female cones on the Wollemi pine
A popular idea in science fiction is the resurrection of prehistoric creatures such as dinosaurs, mammoths, and even Neanderthals. In reality, such a resurrection of a prehistoric creature has yet to be achieved, although there is currently an attempt to create a hybrid mammoth-elephant embryo by a Harvard team.

Human Origins

Noah's Sacrifice - watercolor circa 1896–1902 by James Tissot
The imperfect state of archaeological researches in the Near East impedes any definite identification of the original race or races that created the earliest civilizations of Mesopotamia and Egypt. According to Gordon Childe, however, the predominant racial element in the earliest graves in the region from Elam to the Danube is the ‘Mediterranean’.

Ancient Places

Male and female cones on the Wollemi pine
A popular idea in science fiction is the resurrection of prehistoric creatures such as dinosaurs, mammoths, and even Neanderthals. In reality, such a resurrection of a prehistoric creature has yet to be achieved, although there is currently an attempt to create a hybrid mammoth-elephant embryo by a Harvard team.

Opinion

The ancient and mysterious Sphinx, Giza, Egypt.
In 1995, NBC televised a prime-time documentary hosted by actor Charlton Heston and directed by Bill Cote, called Mystery of the Sphinx. The program centered on the research and writings of John Anthony West, a (non-academic) Egyptologist, who, along with Dr. Robert Schoch, a professor of Geology at Boston University, made an astounding discovery on the Great Sphinx of Giza in Egypt.

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)