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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.

Photo of Zecharia Sitchin (left)(CC0)Akkadian cylinder seal dating to circa 2300 BC depicting the deities Inanna, Utu, and Enki, three members of the Anunnaki.(right)

Zecharia Sitchin and the Mistranslation of Sumerian Texts

In a previous 2-part article (1), the authors wrote about the faulty associations of the Sumerian deities known as the Anunnaki as they are portrayed in the books, television series, and other media...
Runic inscription found in Bergen.

Erotic Medieval Runic Inscriptions Found in Bergen

By ThorNews A runic inscription found in Bergen is quite long and the author must have had a lot of “erotic energy” when he carved these runes into the 33 centimeter-long (13 inches) wooden stick: “I...
Old books

A Masterful $2.5 Million Dollar Rare-Book Heist Stuns Community

In an unprecedented incident in 2017, a group of unknown thieves rappelled down into a specially secured warehouse in Feltham, Middlesex in the early hours of January 30 th and made off with 160 rare...
Wooden Tablets Verify China's First Emperor’s Obsession with Immortality

Wooden Tablets Verify China's First Emperor’s Obsession with Immortality

New archaeological finds shed light on Qin Shi Huang’s (first Emperor of China) quest for eternal life. According to 2000-year-old texts written on thousands of wooden slats, the Chinese Emperor did...
A cylinder seal impression, ca. 2100 BC, sometimes interpreted as Ur-Nammu (seated) bestowing governorship on Ḫašḫamer, ensi of Iškun-Sin.

The Code of Ur-Nammu: When Ancient Sumerians Laid Down the Law, Everyone Obeyed

The Code of Ur-Nammu is the oldest surviving law code. This text was written on clay tablets in the Sumerian language and is reckoned to have been produced towards the end of the 3rd millennium BC...
Relief from a scribe's tomb found in Flavia Solva. (Public Domain) Background: Latin stone inscription.

Acta Diurna: The Telegraph of Ancient Rome, Bringing You All the Latest Gladiator Combat News

‘Roman emperor conquers new lands !’ ‘Five new ways to use your fish paste .’ ‘When do the stars say you will marry ?’ ‘ Viae militares expand our reach to foreign lands.’ These may have been some of...
Aristotle's School, a painting from the 1880s by Gustav Adolph Spangenberg.

The Nicomachean Ethics: How to Approach the Ethical Musings of Aristotle

Aristotle spoke thoughtfully as he strolled along the natural pathways of the Lyceum and his companions were entranced by their teacher’s words. His philosophical musings seemed to intertwine...
Detail of a star chart dating to the Middle Kingdom.

Why Are There 365 Days in a Year? Organizing Dates with an Ancient Egyptian Calendar

The calendar is one of mankind’s most important inventions. Calendars allowed societies to organize time for religious, social, economic, and administrative purposes. The calendar, or rather, two...
The document was found hidden under the wooden loin cloth of the statue

Secret Centuries-Old Document Discovered Inside Buttocks of Jesus Statue

During restorations of an 18th century wooden statue of Jesus Christ, Spanish workers discovered a peculiar note that appears to be a makeshift time capsule. The most surprising and bizarre thing...
Bust of Euripides. Marble, Roman copy after a Greek original from ca. 330 BC. Codex Hierosolymitanus Sancti Sepulcri 36, p. 539.

Overwriting Euripides: Hidden Classical Texts Were Washed Over in Medieval Times

The idea to reduce, re-use, and recycle is not a modern phenomenon. Over the last few years, there have been several instances in which scientists and historians have found ancient texts being...
Maiestas Domini page from Codex Amiatinus (fol. 796v), Firenze, Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana and folio 5r from the Codex Amiatinus (Florence, Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, MS Amiatinus 1), Ezra the scribe. "When the sacred books had been consumed in the fires of war, Ezra repaired the damage."

The Codex Amiatinus: The Skins of 500 Calves Were Used to Create this Monumental Manuscript

The Codex Amiatinus dates to the end of the 7th century AD; making it the oldest known surviving complete Catholic Bible written in the Latin Vulgate. It has been estimated that over 1500 calves were...
The engraved whetstone found in Oslo, Norway. Credit: Karen Langsholt Holmqvist/NIKU

Puzzling Medieval Runes Found on Stone in Norway

A rare find of a stone bearing engravings of runes that date back to the Middle Ages has been unearthed recently at an excavation near Oslo. The relic is a whetstone which was a tool used for...
Romanian Postage stamp design 1989 with Conrad Hass, Austrian military engineer with an early rocket design.

Conrad Haas’ Flying Javelin: Yes, It Is 16th Century Rocket Science

Conrad Haas was a military engineer who lived during the 16 th century. Not much is known for certain about Haas’ life, in fact, he was largely forgotten by history. But this changed in 1961, when a...
Fragment of Apocalypse of Peter, part of the Nag-Hammadi-Codex found in Egypt.

Professors Find Original Greek Copy of Jesus’ Teachings to James

Two biblical scholars from the University of Texas at Austin claim to have discovered the first-known original Greek copy of a heretical Christian writing that describes the secret teachings of Jesus...
The letter (Image courtesy Andong National University)

Last Words of Love Were Sealed for 500 Years in a Korean Tomb

I just want to go to you. Please take me to where you are. My feelings towards you I cannot forget in this world and my sorrow knows no limit. Where would I put my heart now and how can I live with...
Top left section detail of (1593) [The Codex Quetzalecatzin]. [Mexico: Producer not identified] [Map] Retrieved from the Library of Congress.

Library of Congress Obtains Mesoamerican Map from the Dawn of the Americas

The U.S. Library of Congress has recently announced that a unique, indigenous-made map of Mexico from the era of the Nahuatl people's first contact with European explorers is now part of its vast...

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