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Ancient Origins Tour IRAQ

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Myths & Legends

All over the world there are extraordinary stories—stories that once upon a time were believed to be true but are today limited to the sphere of ancient myths and legends. The question remains, are those myths and legends something that existed in the minds of our ancestors, or were they based on true events? It is true that most of those ancient myths and legends appear to the scientific world to be fictitious products of vivid imaginations whose goals were purely to explain phenomena beyond their comprehension. Yet is it not arrogant to accuse our ancestors of being uncivilised and ignorant in one breath, then offer them praise and admiration over their monuments, buildings, art, sculptures, and societies in the next? This only proves that our modern society has two contradictory attitudes toward our past.

In this section we will explore some of the most amazing myths and legends from around the world—legends that may hold truths that can unlock the secrets of our ancient origins.

Eve tempted by the serpent in a paradise illustrated according to the texts of the Bible. An image showing good and evil in one scene.

Lilith: Ancient Demon, Dark Deity or Sensual Goddess?

Lilith, an ancient mythological figure and one of the oldest known female spirits in the world, has embodied various roles across cultures. In some sources she has been described as a demon, while in...
The Temple to Ninmakh to the east of Ishtar Gate in ancient Babylon. Source: CC BY-SA 4.0

Babylon’s Temple of Ninmakh, the Mesopotamian Goddess of Humankind

One of the great temples constructed during the Neo-Babylonian period (626-539 BC), the golden age of the city of Babylon, was the Temple of Ninmakh. The temple was built adjacent to the famous...
Centauromachy - Battle of Lapiths and Centaurs by Luca Giordano, The Hermitage. Source: Public Domain

Centauromachy - the Fabled Clash Between Lapiths and Centaurs

Centauromachy is a unique and captivating tale woven into the complex tapestry of Ancient Greek mythology. It stands as a timeless narrative packed with themes of conflict, ancient civilizations, and...
Painting by Kobayashi Eitaku depicting Sugawara no Michizane reborn as the Tenjin.             Source: Public Domain

Tenjin: How to Become a God in Classical Japan (Video)

In classical Japan, Sugawara no Michizane, later known as Tenjin, rose from humble beginnings to become a revered figure. Born in 845 AD during the Heian Era into a scholarly family, he excelled in...
La Noche triste (the sad night).	Source: Public Domain

The Hunt for Montezuma’s Stolen Aztec Treasure (Video)

In November 1519, the formidable Aztec king, Montezuma , ruled over a flourishing empire at its pinnacle. His empire, comprising 500 city-states and nearly 6 million people, centered on the...
Detail from Nicolas Poussin’s depiction of the Biblical story of Joshua’s victory over the Amalek. Source: Public domain

Who Were the Biblical Amalek People?

If you’ve been following the news, you will have heard references to the use of the term Amalek which was cited by South Africa at the International Court of Justice in The Hague in January 2024. But...
The battle between the gods and the Titans. Source: Pubic Domain

What Caused the War of the Titans in Greek Mythology? (Video)

The War of the Titans , a tumultuous saga in Greek mythology, unfolds like a cosmic drama, blending familial strife, ruthless ambition, and the inescapable pull of destiny. Kronos, the cunning Titan...
AI illustration of King Arthur King of Britain and the sword in the stone. Source: dan/Adobe Stock

The True Story Behind the Sword in the Stone (Video)

The legend of King Arthur , with his famed sword Excalibur and the magical stone, has captivated imaginations for centuries. Rooted in the chaos of 5th-century Britain, the historical existence of...
Statue of Hindu God Shiva Nataraja in the cosmic dance. Source: Elena Kovaleva/Adobe Stock

Shiva, One of the Oldest Gods in the World

Shiva, one of the principal deities in Hinduism, is a complex and multifaceted figure whose significance extends far beyond the bounds of religious worship. Revered as the god of destruction and...
Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove in Nigeria. A sacred forest along the banks of the Osun River just outside the city of Osogbo in Osun State. Source:	 Oloyedejuwonlo/CC BY-SA 4.0

Osun Sacred Grove: Where A West African Spiritual Tradition Flourishes

The Osun-Osogbo Sacred Grove, located on the outskirts of Osogbo in southwestern Nigeria, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for its cultural and spiritual significance. This sacred forest,...
Ancient World mythologies. Source: filmmaster/Adobe Stock

Beyond Reality: 5 Common Themes in World Mythologies

Across the world we have different myths and legends from the elephant god Ganesha to the Maya Jaguar gods to different types of angels, goblins, and fairy like figures that have different names, but...
Barbarian tribes.  Source: Salsabila Ariadina/Adobe Stock

Rethinking Barbarians: Were They Really Savages?

The term "barbarian" has long been associated with images of savagery and brutality, conjuring thoughts of uncivilized societies on the fringes of the ancient world. However, the question arises:...
William Blake's ‘The Madness of Nebchuadnezzar’: Does the Book of Daniel confuse Nebchuadnezzar II with Nabonidus? Source: New World Encyclopedia/CC-BY-SA 3.0

The Lost Years of Nabonidus, Last King of the Neo-Babylonian Empire

Nabonidus was the last king of the Neo-Babylonian Empire, reigning from 556-539 BC. He took the throne after the assassination of the boy-king Labashi-Marduk, who was murdered in a conspiracy only...
Statue of Anubis at the Gregorian Egyptian Museum. Source: Miguel Hermoso Cuesta / CC BY-SA 3.0

The Rise of Hermanubis: The Hybrid God of Both Rome and Egypt

When the Romans invaded and incorporated ancient Egypt into their vast empire, they inevitably brought with them their own customs, traditions, and religion. But, even so, they could not extinguish...
Mycenae in the Peloponnese in Greece. Source: Amanda/Adobe Stock

Five Fascinating Facts About the Mycenaeans (Video)

Unraveling the mysteries of the Mycenaeans, a once-vibrant civilization, poses a challenging task. The enigma surrounding their collapse , marked by the destruction of grand palaces around 1250 BC,...
AI representation of Greek God Dionysus.

Dionysus, the Mysterious Greek God of Wine and Ecstasy

In the realm of ancient gods and goddesses, few held such an esteemed place in history as Dionysus. This vibrant and multifaceted deity of ancient Greek mythology embodies the essence of wine,...
A representation of the Queen of Sheba who is also known Bilqīs, Makeda, or Nicaula. Source: Archivist/Adobe Stock

Little Known Facts About the Queen of Sheba (Video)

The Queen of Sheba , a figure entwined in diverse mythologies, offers a rich tapestry of narratives across various cultures. Mentioned in the Hebrew Bible, Torah, Bible, and Qur'an, she weaves...
Lady Godiva Statue on her horse in Coventry Town Centre 	Source: xtrillian/Adobe Stock

Uncovering the Truth Behind the Real Lady Godiva (Video)

Unraveling Lady Godiva's historical tapestry involves navigating through legends and nuances. The infamous 11th-century Countess of Mercia is best known for her supposed naked ride through Coventry,...
Seventh Plague of Egypt (1823) by John Martin, a painting of the Old Testament bible story. Source: Public domain

Egypt Remembers: Where are the Ancient Accounts of the Great Exodus?

The biblical story of the Israelites’ Descent and Great Exodus speaks about important events that took place in Egypt. We should, therefore, expect to find records of these events in Egyptian sources...
Boudicca became the warrior queen who led a revolt against Roman rule in ancient Britain. Source: NorLife/Adobe Stock

Boudicca: The Truth Behind the British Legend (Video)

Boudicca, the enigmatic warrior queen of the Iceni, has become a legendary figure in British history. Her rebellion against the Roman Empire, shrouded in the accounts of historians Tacitus and...
The Capture of the Golden Fleece, an oil painting by Jean-François de Troy. Source: Public domain

Jason and his Mythological Quest for the Legendary Golden Fleece

One of the most fascinating stories of ancient Greek mythology is the story of the Argonauts and the Quest for the Golden Fleece. Set in the pre-Trojan War era, this epic narrative unfolds during a...
Ancient superstitions abound, including the belief that breaking a mirror can bring bad luck. Source: Ricky / Adobe Stock

10 Spine-Chilling Ancient Superstitions and Their Origins

Superstitions have long held a grip on human imagination, weaving threads of fear and fascination into the tapestry of our history. Today many of us no longer believe in them (or claim not to) but...
Could the real underworld location be closer than we think? Source: 3D Station/Adobe Stock

Is The Real Location of the Ancient Underworld Right in Front of Us?

The myth of the underworld, much like the myth of the lost paradise and the worldwide deluge, is a universal one. Cultures from all across the world, past and present, widely separated and with...
Etching by Francisco Heylan depicting the discover of the Lead Books of Sacromonte. Source: Public domain

The Lead Books of Sacromonte: Historic Forgery or a True Christian Relic?

The Lead Books of Sacromonte, also known as the Libros Plúmbeos or the Sacromonte manuscripts, are a collection of purportedly ancient religious texts that were supposedly discovered in the 16th...

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