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History

From the powerful civilizations of Egypt, Mesopotamia, and Indus Valley, to the fearsome yet sophisticated society of the Vikings, the ancient world was a surprising and challenging place. Here we feature some of the most seminal and influential events and people throughout history, that have helped shape the world we know today.

Scene from the Shahnameh. Afrasiyab (standing figure) executes Nauzar (lying down), while two groups look on.

Persian Poets’ Fabled Family of Heroes

Star-crossed lovers, fathers killing sons and a warrior bride shackling her newlywed husband to the bed, all play a role in the legendary folklore of Persia’s most famous fabled family; that of...
The Tomb of Duke Jing of Qi and his 600 Horses

Excavations Launched at the Tomb of Duke Jing of Qi and his 600 Sacrificial Horses

In 1964, a surprising discovery was made in China – a tomb containing the remains of hundreds of horses, arranged neatly in rows. Such a complex burial and large sacrifice clearly indicated that the...
Xerxes

Xerxes The Great: The Powerful Persian King Whose Death Destroyed an Empire

Xerxes I, also known as Xerxes the Great, was a 5th century Achaemenid king of the Persian empire. He is best known for leading the massive invasion of Greece, marked by the battles of Thermopylae,...
Black Caesar was a pirate off the coast of Florida between the 17th and 18th centuries.

Black Caesar: The African Chief Who Was Captured by Slavers and Became a Pirate

Black Caesar was a notorious pirate who lived between the 17 th and 18 th centuries. Originally from West Africa , Black Caesar was captured and sold into slavery . The ship he was in, however, sank...
El Panteón de los Héroes (The Panthenon of Heroes) by Oleo de Arturo Michelena, (1898)

Eight Heroes and Heroines Whose Names Are Immortalized

Why do the names of some men and women survive the wearing effects of time, living through centuries of recorded history as ‘heroes and heroines’ while other people’s names vanish like dreams upon...
Taurid meteor shower 13,000 years ago.

Prehistory Decoded at Gobekli Tepe: From a Cataclysmic Event Dawns the Origin and Perhaps the End of Civilization

Around 13,000 years ago, the Earth burned. A swarm of comet debris from the Taurid meteor stream had blasted the Americas and parts of Europe; the worst day in prehistory since the end of the ice age...
Snow White a Disney story based on real historical events.

The Truth Behind 5 Disney Movies That Are Based On Real Histories

Many of us grew up watching Disney movies and their tales of fairy princesses and evil queens are undeniably a part of the modern zeitgeist . Some of the movies are original to Disney, but at their...
The Great Court of ancient Heliopolis's temple complex

Finding Canaan: Ancient Roots of the Lost Phoenician Civilization

Of all the seafaring civilizations who, to our knowledge, first explored the vast oceans, none are more mysterious than the ancient Phoenicians. How far did their voyages take them? What lands did...
Mansa Musa: The Richest Man in History

Mansa Musa: The Richest Man in History

When people think of the richest people in history , more often than not they think of industrialists from the modern era, such as the Rothschilds, the Rockefellers, or the Carnegies. Perhaps some...
Byzantium survived the Arab invasions by developing a new system of defense.

Adapting to Survive: How Byzantium Survived the Arab Invasions

The seventh century was a vital point in the history of the Byzantine army. Since the beginning of the century, territory in the Balkans had steadily been lost to Avars and Slavs . Byzantine forces...
A Place for Traditional African Medicine in a Modern World

Traditional African Medicine and its Role in Healing in a Modern World

Herbalism, divination, and spiritualism often combine in traditional African medicine, perhaps the oldest and most varied therapeutic system in the world. This holistic health care system has many...
Freud the Sleuth, Investigates Who Killed Moses?

Freud the Sleuth, Investigates Who Killed Moses?

Sigmund Freud’s article ‘Moses an Egyptian’ caused an outcry as he was taking the radical view that Moses was not a Jew and ascribing an Egyptian ancestry to the prophet, amid a time when Nazi’s were...
Ragnar Lothbrok

Ragnar Lothbrok: A Real Viking Hero Whose Life Became Lost to Legend

Ragnar Lothbrok was a fearless Viking hero who ransacked England and France and fathered the Great Heathen Army. However the historicity of the man with “hairy breeches” is subject to debate. Where...
Drolleries were common in medieval manuscripts.

Drolleries of the Middle Ages Included Comical Yet Sinister Killer Rabbits and Erotic Art

A drollerie (also spelled as drollery) is a type of marginalia found on Medieval manuscripts. Drolleries are amusing, often grotesque, figures drawn on the edges of manuscripts and may be found in...
Vikings Heading for Land’ 1873 by Frank Dicksee (1853–1928).

Viking Blots, Beserkers and Barbaric Blood Eagles

Famed for their ruthless fighting skills and brave exploring little is written about Viking religion and their day to day ritual practices which were arguably a more central component in Norse...
Anne Greene was condemned to death by hanging.

Anne Greene, The Accused Baby Killer Who Refused to Die

Anne Greene was a woman who lived in England during the 17th century. She is notable for having survived her own execution . This was hailed as an act of God and Anne was pardoned. After her failed...

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