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Ancient Origins Tour IRAQ

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History

From the powerful civilizations of Egypt, Mesopotamia, and the 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.

The Visit of the Queen of Sheba to King Solomon

King Solomon’s Mines Discovered: Kings and Pharaohs - Part I

Have King Solomon's Mines really been discovered? Yes, indeed. In fact, they have been known about for centuries, and modern archaeological work on them started way back in the early 19th century...
Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa.

Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa: Statesman, General, and Friend of Augustus

Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa was one of the most powerful and influential men who lived during the early days of the Roman Empire. Agrippa was a statesman, general, and most important of all, a close...
Egyptian couple wearing formal wigs of the 4th of 5th dynasties.

Changing Beauty: The Use of Elaborate Wigs in Ancient Egypt

Ancient Egyptians are known by many as a historical symbol of ancient beauty, vanity, and hygiene. Appearance was very important in the country near the Nile River. The way people looked was a symbol...
Tiye, the Great Royal Wife of Amenhotep III and mother of Akhenaten and grandmother of Tutankhamun

Tiye: One of the Most Influential Women of Ancient Egypt

Tiye was the Great Royal Wife of the ancient Egyptian equivalent to Louis XIV – Amenhotep III. Her son Akhenaten, was one of the biggest causes of scandal during the pharaohs’ time in Egypt. She was...
Metal belt from Metsamor site, Armenia. Second century BC.

The Legacy of Armenia: Trade, Metallurgy, and Forging of Precious Metals of the Ancient World

Since ancient times, demand for metals has been a big part of commercial exchange between countries separated by great distance. The Armenian Highland is situated between the Anatolian and Iranian...
Posthumous portrait of Christopher Columbus by Sebastiano del Piombo, 1519.

Two New Theories on the Hotly Debated Origins of Christopher Columbus

During the last few years two new and very interesting theories (supported with scientific research) have appeared about Columbus. They suggest that the history of the man who “discovered” America,...
A painting depicting women inspecting silk, early 12th century, ink and color on silk, by Emperor Huizong of Song.

The Legend of Leizu and the Origins of Luxurious Chinese Silk

Leizu (嫘祖), known also as Lady Hsi Ling Shih (西陵氏) is a legendary figure in Chinese history credited with the discovery of silk and the invention of the silk loom. Silk is undoubtedly one of the most...
Galen of Pergamon (Claudius Galenus, or in French, Claude Galien) (Paris: Lithograph by Gregoire et Deneux, ca. 1865).

Galen: A Famous Medical Researcher of Classical Antiquity

Galen of Pergamum was one of the most renowned physicians that the Roman Empire had ever produced. In addition to being a celebrated physician, Galen is said to have also been a philosopher. Unlike...
Hypatia. Signed A. Seifert. Oil on panel, St Catherine of Alexandria

Is St Catherine of Alexandria a Fictional Person Based on Hypatia of Alexandria?

Saint Catherine of Alexandria, also known as The Great Martyr Saint Catherine, is one of the most important saints of the Middle East. Tradition says that she was a virgin who was martyred at the...
Monument to Cuauhtémoc in Veracruz, Mexico.

Cuauhtémoc, The Last Aztec Emperor to Fight Against the Spanish

Cuauhtémoc (meaning ‘Setting Sun’ or ‘Descending Eagle’) was the 11th Tlatoani (literally meaning ‘speaker’, but may also be translated as ‘king’) of Tenochtitlan, and the last ruler of the Aztec...
Deriv; Ordination of Jacques de Molay in 1265 as a Knight Templar, at the Beaune commandery and the Chinon Parchment.

The Guilt of the Gnostic Knights Templar: The Chinon Parchment

The recently discovered Chinon Parchment of the Vatican Library in 2001 has brought a level of redemption to the Knights Templar. It does not discount their “heretical” activities, which were...
A stone block shows Ay receiving the 'Gold of Honor' award in his Amarna tomb from Akhenaten.

The Sins and Glories of the Pharaoh Ay

Pharaoh Ay is known in popular books as the person who may have murdered Tutankhamun. Usually, he is described as a pharaoh-monster of the 18th dynasty. However, the real history is very different...
"Tomyris Plunges the Head of the Dead Cyrus Into a Vessel of Blood"

Tomyris, The Female Warrior and Ruler Who May Have Killed Cyrus the Great

Tomyris was an ancient ruler of the Massagetae, a Scythian pastoral-nomadic confederation in Central Asia. She became famous for her bravery and especially for the greatest battle she ever fought –...
Thucydides: General, Historian, and the Father of Scientific History

Thucydides: General, Historian, and the Father of Scientific History

Thucydides was an Athenian general and historian, most notable for his work known as the History of the Peloponnesian War . Whilst Herodotus, a near-contemporary of his, is often hailed as the Father...
Screenshot of ‘What are song lines?’

Songlines: Mapping the Journeys of the Creation Ancestors in Australia

Songlines (known also as dreaming tracks) are believed by the Aboriginal people of Australia to be the journeys taken by the creation ancestors (or creator-beings) across the land during the Dreaming...
Musa depicted holding a gold coin from the 1375 Catalan Atlas.

The Legend of How Mansa Abu Bakr II of Mali Gave up the Throne to Explore the Atlantic Ocean

Mansa (meaning king , emperor or sultan ) Abu Bakr II was a 14th century ruler of the Mali Empire in West Africa. This period of time, i.e. the 14th century, was a time when the Mali Empire had...
Hernando De Soto and Spanish Conquistadores seeing the Mississippi River for the first time.

The Forgotten Story of Spanish Conquerors in North America

Official history says that the Spanish colonizers in America were focused on the territory from Mexico to the end of South America. For centuries, there was the question of why the Spaniards didn't...
Area Sacra di Largo Argentina in Rome

Four Sanctuaries for The Gods: Area Sacra di Largo Argentina in Rome

An ancient secret is buried in front of us—just meters below our current street level. Four years ago Spanish researchers of the Institute of History of the Center for Humanities and Social Sciences...
Alexander and his queen at table, and again in the foreground with a feather in his throat after being poisoned, 323 BC.

Did the Trusted Ptolemy Murder Alexander the Great?

Alexander the Great was the ruler of one of the biggest empires in the ancient world. However, he died before his 33rd birthday, leaving behind a legend. He was careful and apparently avoided many...
The Royal Ballet of the Dowager of Bilbao's Grand Ball, 1626.

Displaying Sophistication with Masks and Curtsies: The Early History of Ballet

Ballet has been described as an art form created by the movement of the human body . It is a type of dance performed on a stage in front of an audience. The word ballet is derived from the French...
A modern religious painting shows the Founding-King in similar motifs.

The Legendary Founder of Korea, Dangun Wanggeom

According to Korean tradition, Dangun Wanggeom (known also as Dangun or Tangun) was the legendary founder of Gojoseon (or ‘Old Joseon’), the first recorded state in Korean history. This state...
The Gate of Nimrud (Metropolitan Museum)

The Mythical Lamassu: Impressive Symbols for Mesopotamian Protection

Lamassu are human-headed, eagle-winged, bulls or lions that once protected cities in Mesopotamia. They were believed to be very powerful creatures, and served both as a clear reminder of the king’s...
The Statue of Marcus Aurelius (detail) in the Musei Capitolini in Rome.

Marcus Aurelius: Life of the Famous Roman Emperor and Philosopher

Marcus Aurelius Antoninus, known more commonly as Marcus Aurelius, was the 16th emperor of Rome, who reigned from 161 AD to his death in 180 AD. Marcus Aurelius is remembered as the last of the Five...
Detail of altar frontal (antependium}, France or Italy, 1730-1740. Silk satin with silk and metallic-thread embroidery, guipure and gaufrure.

Stitching the Story of Cutwork Embroidery, One of the Most Luxurious Goods in Europe

Different types of embroidery are known in the history of every single civilization. It seems that people liked to create beautiful personal adornments almost since the beginning of time. Cutwork is...

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