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Ancient Traditions

Ancient Origins brings you articles related to Ancient Traditions from all over the world. Find related articles in the sections of history, archaeology, human origins, unexplained, artifacts, ancient places and myths and legends.

European depiction of the Persian (Iranian) doctor Al-Razi, in Gerardus Cremonensis "Recueil des traités de médecine" 1250-1260. A surgeon (left) holds the matula, a vessel for collecting the urine. (Public Domain) Frankincense. (CC0) Past civilizations knew how to use frankincense in different ways for medical and ritual purposes.

Frankincense: How to Use Ancient Wonder Cure for Healing

Frankincense is famous for being one of the three gifts presented by the Magi to baby Jesus (the other two being gold and myrrh). Several thousand years ago, people knew how to use frankincense to...
A ghostly pale woman holding a pumpkin. Halloween and paranormal phenomena often go hand in hand.

This Scary Season: Halloween and Paranormal Phenomena Make for Spooky Supernatural Events

Every year, amidst the excitement of Halloween-related fun, conversations commonly turn toward scary and unnerving talk of the mysterious world of paranormal and supernatural phenomena. Unlike the...
Medieval stargazers. People have been fascinated by the stars and their possible influence over our lives, long before and after the time of Babylonian astrology.

Babylonian Astrology: How Mesopotamian Priests Influenced Your Horoscope

Mankind has always looked up to the sky and wondered at its beauty and secrets. Human beings are also incredibly good at spotting patterns, so it is no wonder that we noticed the changing appearance...
Men of the Vedda culture.

Meet the Half Million-year-old Jungle People of Sri Lanka! The Fascinating Vedda Culture

In the western world, a statue, monument, or fountain might inspire thoughts and debates about the First World War, the American Civil War, or the Protestant Reformation. What doesn’t often pop up...
Women Warriors: Queen Zenobia Addressing Her Soldiers by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo

Warrior Women: Despite what Gamers Might Believe, the Ancient World was Full of Female Fighters

Eve MacDonald / The Conversation One of the great things about computer games is that anything is possible in the almost endless array of situations on offer, whether they are realistic or fantasy...
Trash cans	in a city park

Making America Great Again, With Some Seriously Ancient Trash Talk

I bet it’s been a while since you stopped to think about the garbage you generate? As we navigate the corridors of life we each leave behind us a trail of trash but with trash cans and dumpsters in...
Comanche Feats of Horsemanship (1834-1835) by George Catlin.

Comanche Tribe History is One of Conquest

The history of the Native American Comanche tribe includes their move from ancestral homelands in Wyoming to more southerly parts and conquering new lands. They were then in turn conquered, after...
‘The Storyteller’ by L.F. Tantillo depicting Haudenosaunee (Iroquois Confederacy) people.

Surviving a Hostile New World: The Iroquois Confederacy's Struggle Against Disease, Starvation, Enslavement and Warfare

The founding of the Iroquois Confederacy of Five Nations came about in a campaign to bring peace to the warring, yet related tribes of the region around New York and the eastern Great Lakes. In 1722...
Tuscarora tribe Heroes Monument.

The Tuscarora Tribe Endured Violence and Upheaval, But Some Have Survived to Tell Their Story

The Tuscarora tribe numbered an estimated 25,000 in some 24 villages, stretching from the Atlantic Ocean in Virginia and North Carolina to the Shenandoah River and the Appalachian Mountains. Their...
Stone and crystal traditions have been around for a very long time. This is a humanoid figure turned into a pendant

For 3.3 Million Years Stone and Crystal Traditions Have Shaped Our Destiny

Magpies pervade European folklore for their compulsive urge to collect sparkly things. Similarly, humans share this affinity with shiny gemstones and sparkling crystals. All over the world ancient...
This is an artist's copy of a mural at the Temple of the Murals at Bonampak, a Maya archaeological site showing examples of heavy jewelry.

New Discovery Suggests That Maya Elites Danced Wearing As Much As 25 Pounds of Jade Jewelry

A five-pound jade head pendant has been found at Ucanal, an archaeological site in what was once the Maya city of K’anwitznal. The massive jade pendant, the heaviest of its kind ever found, once hung...
The Bodhisattva Gautama (Buddha-to-be) undertaking extreme asceticism before his enlightenment.

Asceticism Across the Faiths: Many People in the Major World Religions Have Done it

Asceticism is a way of life marked by the voluntary abstinence from worldly pleasures. This way of life is most often associated with religion and spirituality, and its practitioners usually aim to...
‘Shoshone Indian and his Pet Horse’ (1858-1860) by Alfred Jacob Miller.

The Nomadic Survival Tactics of the Shoshone Tribe

The Shoshone Tribe would better be described as a nation or a people than a tribe. They are scattered over a big area in three main groups in three states, Nevada, Idaho, and Wyoming, with their...
Shinto painting from manuscript of Todaiji, Nara, Japan

Purification as the Core of the Ancient Shinto Faith

A ritual based religion, Shintoism is defined as "the way of the gods" in Japan, from the Chinese Shendao. It is the indigenous religion of the country, and survives today as the state religion,...
Statue of Rollo, Duke of Normandy in Ålesund, Norway. The Clameur de Haro is traditionally believed to have been a plea towards this ruler.

Clameur de Haro: Feudal Law Brings Construction Project To a Standstill

Rosie Henderson, from Guernsey, activated the ancient Norman rite of Clameur de Haro in protest of “the narrowing of a road” which she claims “would endanger pedestrians and motorists,” according to...
The Secret Strategic Plans of Darius the Great

The Secret Strategic Plans of Darius the Great

To the north of the Persian Empire, around both sides of Caucasus Mountain, various Scythian (Palaeo-Slavian / Staroslavianskje) tribes lived. They were nomadic, i.e. not yet permanently settled in...

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