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Ancient Writings

There are literally thousands of incredible texts that have survived from the ancient world, which are etched onto copper, beautifully inscribed on papyrus, chipped onto tablets, and even written using the ink of ground down gold and precious stones. Here we feature many ancient writings, which have served to open a window onto the daily lives of our ancestors and enhanced the knowledge we hold about our ancient past.

Representative image. The Eruption of Vesuvius in December 1820 by Johann Christian Dahl

Did a Brutal Volcanic Eruption Lead People to Abandon Their Pagan Gods and Embrace Christianity?

Memories of the largest lava flood in the history of Iceland, recorded in an apocalyptic medieval poem, were used to drive the island's conversion to Christianity, new research suggests. A team of...
Ancient art in the Altai Mountains, Russia. While the world’s best-known cave art exists in France and Spain, examples of it abound throughout the world.

Did Humans Speak Through Cave Art? Ancient Drawings and Language's Origins

When and where did humans develop language? To find out, look deep inside caves, suggests an MIT professor. More precisely, some specific features of cave art may provide clues about how our symbolic...
Cult scene: the worship of the sun-god, Shamash. Limestone cylinder-seal, Mesopotamia.

Reading the So-Called Sumerian Seals Relating to Gods from Outer Space

In a recent article on Ancient Origins , Jason Jarrell and Sarah Farmer discussed the possibility that Zecharia Sitchin mistranslated several Sumerian Texts. According to Sitchin, there were a number...
Rune staffs at the Museum of History in Lund, Sweden.

Medieval Sudoku: Codebreaking Hidden Messages in Viking Runes

Jötunvillur is a little-known runic code. Only nine known examples of Jötunvillur inscriptions have been found in northern Europe, making it extremely difficult to crack. When a runes expert managed...
Tablet hypothesized to be the oldest writing ever discovered.

An 8,000-year-old Slab Holds the “Oldest Writing” Ever Discovered! Or Does It?

A tiny ceramic slab dated to around 6000 BC with “written signs” has been discovered by archaeologists at a prehistoric settlement near the town of Nova Zagora in Southeast Bulgaria. And, they...
A curse tablet wrapped around a chicken bone.

Ancient Sex Curse Revealed: May Your Penis Hurt When You Make Love!

Curse tablets in the ancient world are like Facebook posts today—they were everywhere, created by almost everyone, and can still be found in the strangest of places. They could be broadly vague or...
Aristotle’s Masterpiece Completed in Two Parts.

Ancient X-Rated Book of Perversion Goes Up For Sale. Any Bidders?

A perverted "sex manual" featuring shocking magical and mythical X-rated content will be sold at a UK auction next month. The first edition of this sordid book entitled Aristotle's Masterpiece...
Top: A petroglyph portrays multiple symbols on Har Karkom ridge, Israel. (CC BY-SA 4.0). Bottom left: Instances of names of god found in rock art of the Negev as sited by Yehuda Rotblum.

Does the Negev’s Ancient Rock-Art Help Turn the Bible Exodus Story into Fact?

A chain of holy mountains with “god’s name” painted in ancient rock-art has led a scholar to claim he has finally identified the long sought after “lost region" inhabited by the proto-Israelies after...
Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden by Wenzel Peter, Vatican Museum

What Happened in Eden? Alternative Translation Tells a Very Different Story

All modern concepts of the Garden of Eden stem from a few verses in the biblical Book of Genesis, none of which is entirely free from ambiguity. The ancient Hebraic documents, from which the early...
 Book of Kells, Folio 32v, Christ Enthroned. Scanned from Treasures of Irish Art, 1500 BC to 1500 AD, From the Collections of the National Museum of Ireland.

Priceless Medieval Sacred Text Reveals Its True Origins

Arguably the world’s most famous medieval manuscript, the wonderfully illustrated Book of Kells , was “created in 2 parts over 50 years,” Dr Bernard Meehan of Trinity College, Dublin, told reporters...
Sun and Moon image,left; Lucian, the satirist. Engraving by William Faithorne, The Library of Congress

Satire or the First Science Fiction? Lucian of Samosata’s A True History

A True History (known in its original Greek as Alēthē diēgēmata , or in Latin as Vera Historia ) is a story written by Lucian of Samosata, an author of Syrian / Assyrian origin who lived during the 2...
Charter of Henry II: 1171-2.

Might This Small Ancient Manuscript Give Post-Brexit Bristolians Entry to Dublin?

Did you know that Bristolians are entitled to live in Dublin thanks to an 846-year-old charter written by King Henry II which has never been revoked? In other words, people from Bristol could remain...
60 pieces of scroll have been reassembled in the latest scroll.

One of the Last Two Known Dead Sea Scrolls Is Deciphered

Researchers from the Haifa University have reconstructed the contents of one of the last two undeciphered Dead Sea Scrolls, disclosing a distinctive calendar used by a Jewish sect that lived in the...
San Lorenzo Colossal Head 1, Olmec culture, Museo de Antropología de Xalapa, Mexico.

6 Discoveries that Show the Pre-Columbian Americas Traded Across the Oceans

Ancient civilizations look ever-more advanced with each passing year as new discoveries continue to showcase just how sophisticated they truly were. Yet, the idea that our ancestors were able to make...
The comb was discovered in Ribe, West Denmark.

Objects with Viking Rune Inscriptions Unearthed in Denmark’s Oldest Town

Ancient objects with rare Viking rune inscriptions have been discovered in Denmark. Experts suggest that the runic inscriptions could possibly shed new light on a very important period of the early...
Caves of Loltun, Mexico

Loltun Cave Art and Precious Clues to the Lost Mayan Civilization

There is a kid’s poem written by Jean Marzollo that begins: “In fourteen hundred ninety-two, Columbus sailed the ocean blue.” It goes on speak about the challenges and wonders of Columbus’s voyage to...

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