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The Forge of Vulcan by Diego Velázquez (1630) (Public Domain)

Excalibur: Extracting Swords From Stone, Ancient Metallurgical Metaphors

The first mention of the famous ‘Sword in the Stone’ of the Arthurian tradition is found in Robert de Boron’s Merlin , a medieval French poem, part of the 13th-century Lancelot-Grail cycle of French...
New research has concluded that it was bees, and not Neanderthals, who left pollen within Shanidar Cave in Iraq. Source: ink drop / Adobe Stock

Bees, Not Neanderthal Florists, Dropped Pollen in Iraq’s Shanidar Cave

At Shanidar Cave in the Zagros Mountains of the Kurdish region of Iraq, excavations in the 1950s unearthed the remains of a Neanderthal who had apparently been placed on a bed of flowers after his...
Death comes for us all, but some leave better stories than others. These strange deaths will make you shake your head, and think twice! Source: xlaoma / Adobe Stock

11 Very Strange Deaths from History

We all die eventually, but some of us go out in weirder ways than others. With the number of people who have existed throughout human history, at least a few strange deaths are to be expected. Below...
A honey collecting honey hunter in Nepal. Source: Andrew Newey

The Ancient Art of Honey Collecting on the Himalayan Cliffs of Nepal

The Gurung tribespeople of Nepal have been collecting honey from Himalayan cliffs for centuries, risking their lives in an ancient tradition that has been passed down over many generations. But now...
Amphora dating to circa 540 BC made in Attica, Greece, depicting bees from ancient Greek mythology. Source: The British Museum / CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

Getting Buzzed: The History of Hallucinogenic Mad Honey

Everyone loves honey. A delicious, sweet treat, it can be used in recipes, cosmetics, or as a sugar substitute. However, not all honey is made the same. This is incredibly clear in Nepal and Turkey,...
An Egyptian woman wearing a mysterious wax head cone, which is morphing 2) into the benben stone, atop which sits 3) the bennu bird, symbol of resurrection, all set before 4) the Great Pyramid, the architectural climax of mound expressionism, behind which rises 5) the morning sun, called weben by the Egyptians. This rhymed with benben, and provided an important linkage between the rising of the primeval mound and the solar disc. (Image: Design by Jonathon Perrin)

Egyptian Head Cones: Mini Pyramids and Status Symbols

One of ancient Egypt’s most-enduring embalming enigmas has to be its cryptic head cones. These unusual objects can be seen in tomb paintings perched atop the heads of both mummies and living people...
Honey Liquid Gold Of The Ancient World

Honey Liquid Gold Of The Ancient World

In Greek mythology, Melissa was a nymph who discovered and taught the use of honey and from whom bees were believed to have received their name. Regarded as nectar of the gods, honey is obviously as...
Cupid the Honey Thief by Albrecht Dürer (1514) Kunsthistorisches Museum (Public Domain)

To Bee Or Not to Bee In The History Of Mankind

“ Sì come schiera d'ape, che s'infiora / as a host of bees, which blooms” said Dante Alighieri in Paradiso , XXXI, v.7 The Popol Vuh , the sacred book of the mythology of the Maya, tells how the bee...
Archaeologist carrying out excavations at the pyramid of the bees.

Peruvian Pyramid of the Bees Reveals Its Deathly Secrets

The Inca Empire of modern-day Peru dominated the South American Andes mountain range with a vast network of roads, farms and temples, before the Spanish conquest in the 16th century. Archaeologists...
Ritual Chambers of the Andes: Used in Secret, Near Death Simulations

Ritual Chambers of the Andes: Used in Secret, Near Death Simulations

Rather than being burial chambers, the chullpas of Sillustani and Cutimbo were used for a secret, near-death simulation in which candidates returned 'risen'. Conventional history claims the Inka...
Apis mellifera or honeybees working on the comb

Beekeeping may go back to the early years of agriculture, up to 9,000 years ago

Archaeologists have found evidence on pottery that people were using honeycomb at least 9,000 years ago. A research team from several European institutions has found the distinctive chemical...
Hhunter gatherers

Sharks, bees and humans use same mathematical pattern to hunt

A mathematical pattern of movement called a Lévy walk describes the hunting behaviour of many animals, including sharks, birds and honeybees, and now for the first time it has been shown to describe...