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Famous People

In this section, we shed light on some of the most famous and infamous people known throughout history, from powerful pharaohs, to emperors and empresses, acclaimed military leaders, or just regular civilians who’ve been thrown into the spotlight for great crimes or for heroic actions, leaving an indelible mark on the world.

Depiction of Ramesses II slaying one enemy while trampling another, from a rock-cut relief at Abu Simbel	Source: Aoineko/CC BY-SA 3.0

Five Cruelest Pharaohs in Egyptian History (Video)

Egyptian history is replete with tales of pharaonic cruelty, and among the most notorious are the 5 cruelest pharaohs who left an indelible mark on the sands of time. In the First Dynasty, rulers...
AI generated abstract modern painting of a chieftain of ancient Britannia, possibly Catuvellauni. Source: Pana/Adobe Stock

The Catuvellauni, The Defiant British Tribe That Stood Against Rome

When we consider the history of Pre-Roman Britain, the Catuvellauni truly stand out as a formidable and enigmatic tribe whose legacy echoes through the ages. Nestled in the heart of Ancient Britannia...
AI image of a Celtic warrior (Durotriges) with a shield emblazoned with a boar’s head and a sword at his side, standing tall and proud ready to defend his tribe. Source: Justlight/Adobe Stock

Durotriges, the Celtic Fort Dwellers in Iron Age Britain

The Durotriges, an ancient Celtic tribe inhabiting what is now modern-day Dorset, Somerset, and Devon in southwestern Britain, were a very important ancient tribe of British history. Their legacy...
Not quite like the painting: the reconstructed face of Chinese Emperor Wu using DNA extracted from his remains, and the portrait of Emperor Wudi in the Thirteen Emperors Scroll. Source: Pianpian Wei / Current Biology.

DNA Data Reveals Face of a Chinese Emperor after 1,500 Years

Taking advantage of extraordinary advances in the study of ancient DNA, researchers from Fudan and Xiamen Universities in China completed a detailed facial reconstruction of a Chinese emperor who...
Representation of the English samurai, William Adams.         Source: adrenalinapura/ Adobe stock

The English Samurai - The Story of William Adams (Video)

William Adams , also known as Miura Anjin in Japan, transcended cultural boundaries to become one of the first Western Samurai in Japanese history. Born in 1564 during the Elizabethan era , Adams'...
Large pre-Hispanic Olmec basalt carved head in the La Venta archeological park in Villahermosa Mexico.	Source: Barna Tanko

What Are the Contributions of the Olmecs to the World? (Video)

The Olmecs , an ancient Mesoamerican civilization predating the Aztecs and Mayas , left a profound mark on history despite the mysteries surrounding their origins and disappearance. Scholars agree...
Engraving of Cornelius Tacitus from a drawing by Brooke. Source: Public domain

Tacitus: The Master Chronicler of Ancient Rome

Publius Cornelius Tacitus, better known as just Tacitus, is arguably one of the most illustrious figures in Roman historiography. His writings cast a profound light on the intricacies and nuances of...
Left, Painting of Euclid. Right, A page first printed edition of Euclid's Elements.           Source: Fondazione Cariplo/CC BY-SA 3.0; Erhard Ratdolt /CC BY-SA 4.0

Euclid and the Birth of Geometry

It’s no secret that many of us are not too fond of mathematics and geometry, and that it is often too complex. But even so, it can be pretty mind-blowing to look back in history and discover the...
Representational image of Boudica, the warrior queen of the Iceni, one of the many Iron Age tribes of Britain. Source: NorLife / Adobe Stock

Forging a Nation: The Iron Age Tribes of Britain

The Iron Age tribes of Britain were dynamic societies that flourished between roughly 800 BC and 43 AD. This pivotal period marked a significant transition in British history, characterized by the...
Utu-Khegal, Prince of the Summerian city of Erech, imploring victory against the Gutian king, Tirikan. Source: Public Domain

The Gutians - Babylon's Brutal Barbarians (Video)

The Gutians , believed to have dwelled in the rugged terrain surrounding the Zagros Mountains, emerge as intriguing yet mysterious figures in ancient Mesopotamian annals. Dependent solely on accounts...
Samurai gold armor statue. Source: Public Domain

The Amazing Story of Yasuke, The Forgotten African Samurai

Samurai are among the most enduring symbols of Japanese cultural heritage, thus unsurprisingly, most samurai were Japanese. There are, however, examples of non-Japanese who became samurai as well...
The Triumph of Cleopatra or The Arrival of Cleopatra in Cilicia (1821).                                    Source: Public Domain

What Happened to Cleopatra’s Children? (Video)

Cleopatra , a pivotal figure in ancient history, bore four children, marking a significant chapter in her legacy. Amidst the intricate web of alliances and power struggles that defined the era,...
Solon and King Creso. Source: Public Domain

Solon of Athens: The Grandfather of Democracy (Video)

Solon , a luminary among the seven sages of ancient Greece, was born in Athens around 640 or 638 BC. Hailing from a distinguished family with roots in Salamis, Solon embarked on maritime expeditions...
The Gaul Littavicus betraying the Roman cause and fleeing to support Vercingétorix during the Gallic Wars, in a painting by Théodore Chassériau citca 1838. Source: Public domain

Caesar’s Gambit: Reliving the Drama of the Gallic Wars

One of the principal aspects of growing empires is war. Throughout history, great kingdoms and realms were born at the expense of neighbors who were weaker and ripe for plunder. That is what happened...
Representation of Erik the Red. Source: Gelpi/Adobe Stock

From Exile to Exploration: The Saga of Erik the Red

Erik the Red is one of the most interesting figures in Norse history. Epitomizing the Viking spirit of adventure and conquest, Erik is widely (and mistakenly) remembered as the first European to...
The village and citadel at Thula have their roots in the Himyarite kingdom. Source: fotoember/ Adobe Stock

Himyarite Kingdom: The Forgotten Empire (Video)

The Himyarite Kingdom , spanning from the 2nd century BC to the 6th century AD, stands as a testament to Yemen's rich history beyond contemporary turmoil. Situated strategically along the Maritime...
An 1845 painting of a group of people from the Sioux tribe by Charles Deas. Source: Public domain

The Ancient Sioux Tribe, A Ghost Dance, and a Savior That Never Came

“ In the old, old days, before Columbus ‘discovered’ us, as they say, we [the people of the Sioux tribe] were even closer to the animals than we are now. Many people could understand the animal...

How Confucianism Shaped Chinese Culture and Legacy (Video)

Confucianism, originating during the Zhou dynasty , emerged as a philosophy emphasizing moral principles and societal harmony, devoid of the supernatural elements common in many other religious...
Man and woman sketch in the style of Leonardo da Vinci Source: vitanovski/Adobe Stock

What Makes Us Human? How Ancient Thinkers Saw the Human-Animal Divide

Julia Kindt /The Conversation What makes us human? What (if anything) sets us apart from all other creatures? Ever since Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution, the answer to these questions has...
A late 19th-century painting of Act IV, Scene 15 of Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra: Cleopatra holds Antony as he dies. Source: Alexandre Bida/ CC BY-SA 4.0

Battle of Alexandria 30 BC - The End of Antony and Cleopatra (Video)

In 30 BC, the Battle of Alexandria marked the culmination of Antony and Cleopatra's struggle against Octavian's forces. Following their defeat at Actium , Antony's remaining troops faced challenges,...
Representational image of Roman Emperor Maximinus Thrax. Source: JUSTIN / Adobe Stock

Maximinus Thrax's Turbulent Rule: Rome's Unsuccessful Giant Soldier-Emperor

The history of the vast and powerful Roman Empire was defined by its many rulers. After all, talented emperors were responsible for maintaining that venerable and very complex social machine. However...
Giulia Tofana was a 17th century leader of a poison cartel responsible for over 600 deaths thanks to her trademark poison Aqua Tofana. The Love Potion by Evelyn De Morgan.	Source: Public Domain

Giulia Tofana: The Woman Who Poisoned 600 Men with Her Makeup (Video)

Giulia Tofana's notoriety stemmed from her cunning manipulation of Renaissance society's fascination with poisons and cosmetics. Born into an era where women lacked agency in matters of marriage and...
A mummified body of the Gebelein man in the British Museum. Source: Jack1956/CC BY-SA 3.0

The Gebelein Man, an Ancient Tattooed Murder Victim (Video)

Delving into the story of the Gebelein Man unravels a fascinating tapestry of ancient lore. Discovered in Luxor in 1896, this remarkably preserved mummy stands as a testament to the enduring...
This decorative belt buckle is of a nomad horseman spearing a boar. The rider wears the steppe dress, his hair is tied into a hair bun characteristic of the oriental steppes, and his horse has characteristically Xiongnu horse trappings. Dated to the 2nd-1st century BC.	Source: Public Domain

Five Most Influential Monarchies in Ancient Asia (Video)

The ancient monarchies of Asia left an indelible mark on history, shaping economies, cultures, and trade routes that endured for centuries. Among these, the Han Dynasty of China stands as a towering...

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