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superstition

Dark demonb (Luis Louro / Adobe Stock)

Ancient Curses: Five Ways to Create Calamity in the Ancient World

Ever since the days when magic first arose, people have been looking to manipulate the world with supernatural means and divine intervention – often for positive ends, but also to punish or send...
 A woman and children were found dead in a well near their home.

Ancient Superstitions Pervade India as Modern ‘Witch Hunt’ Leaves Mother and Children Dead

A shocking story from India is showing that in some areas of the world old superstitions are still alive and leading to terrible crimes. The belief in witchcraft is still common in many areas of...
“Goddess of Luck” Blind Fortuna by Tadeusz Kuntze (1754)

Pure Luck: The Role of Chance in History

Luck is a way of understanding or judging how chance events affect our lives. Chance may be a mixed bag of marshmallows and razor blades, a flowing river of good and bad experiences; positive,...
The ‘mourning scene’ on the East wall in the Royal Tomb at El-Amarna (TA 26B - Chamber gamma). Akhenaten is shown leading the royal family in grieving the death of Princess Meketaten, their second daughter, who stands inside a pavilion associated with childbirth. Julian Tuffs.

Challenges of Infant Mortality in Ancient Egypt: Amulets, Spells and the Divine—Part II

Among all the perils that the ancient Egyptians battled through their use of religion and magic, none came close to the poignant and desperate prayers they made to save the lives of their offspring...
Mother Love: Detail from a relief shows Pharaoh Seti I as a child sitting on the lap of goddess Isis. Her right arm is resting on his back while she gently caresses his face with her left hand. This scene can be found on the western wall of the Second Hypostyle Hall. Temple of Seti I, Abydos.

Challenges of Infant Mortality in Ancient Egypt: Disease, Death and Deliverance - Part I

Family came first in ancient Egypt. Be it the royal household or the commoner on the street, the bond between parents and their children was considered sacred. Right through the Old Kingdom period...
A Frog underwater with a crown.

An Ambiguous Amphibian: The Everchanging Frog Symbol in World Myth

Frogs and toads played a wide variety of roles in ancient cultures. Although there are some differences, they generally represented female creation energy. Frogs appear in ancient stories, myths,...
The mummy was reburied on October 14 by a group of men in the village of Kara-Bulak in southern Bishkek Province, where it was discovered in 1956.

Dispute Rages as Psychic Warnings See Kyrgyzstan’s Only Mummy Returned to the Earth

Scientists are demanding Kyrgyzstan’s only mummy be taken out from the spot in which it has recently been reburied. The 1,500-year-old relic was taken from a museum and quietly buried on the eve of a...
The 800-year-old skeleton found in Bulgaria stabbed through the chest with iron rod.

People Practiced Anti-Vampire Rituals in Bulgaria Until Three Decades Ago

Thanks to Bram Stoker’s Gothic horror novel Dracula, many people associate vampires with the region of Transylvania in Romania. However, it was only around 25 years ago that anti-vampire rituals...
“Diamond Ring” effect of a total solar eclipse. Aug. 11, 1999 in Bulgaria.

Total Solar Eclipse of 2017: How Rare Cosmic Event Gave Rise to Ancient Myths and Legends

Today, August 21, America will darken under the path of a total solar eclipse. This rare and spectacular astronomical alignment, when the Moon appears to completely cover the sun, shadowing the...
‘Evil eye.’

Rings, Gestures, and Phallus Talismans: The Evil Eye and Ancient Ways to Ward Off Its Power

For over 5000 years people have worried that a look of envy or dislike would inflict injury, bad luck, or even death on the recipient. People would wear specific items of jewelry or other talismans...
No escape…Detail of a miniature of ‘Death Chopping Down a Tree’ - British Library, Royal 15 D V f. 36. Jehan Froissart. Chroniques. Netherlands, last quarter of the 15th century.

Medieval Villagers Were Ready to Mutilate Potential Zombies

For the first time, researchers have found evidence in a belief in the walking dead in medieval England, where they analyzed bones and skeletons that were decapitated, burned, and otherwise mutilated...
How the Ancient World Invoked the Dead to Help the Living

How the Ancient World Invoked the Dead to Help the Living

Though it may seem as if Halloween is a modern con trick designed to get us spending our hard-earned cash on an American celebration, this is not the case. In fact, dressing up, knocking on neighbors...
Kuman Thong amulets.

Child Angels, Golden Boys, Supernatural Dolls and Necromancy in Thailand

Recently, reports of a Thai doll craze have been featured at the end of news hours, a spot typically reserved for pop culture tidbits like hijab wearing Barbies (“hijarbies”) or the birthday of the...
Searching for The Gold of the Lost Dutchman Mine in Superstition Mountain

Searching for The Gold of the Lost Dutchman Mine in Superstition Mountain

The Lost Dutchman Mine is said to be a rich goldmine located somewhere in the southwestern American state of Arizona. Generally speaking, this mine is claimed to be situated in the Superstition...
“Diamond Ring” effect of a total solar eclipse. Aug. 11, 1999 in Bulgaria.

Solar Eclipse of 2016: Rare Celestial Phenomenon Birthed Ancient Myths and Legends

The only total solar eclipse of 2016 is set to darken the skies over Indonesia. Visible largely across the archipelago, this rare natural phenomenon will happen on the morning of March 9 and is...
Detail from an illustration of a body in its coffin that starts to bleed in the presence of the murderer during a cruentation 1497.

The Bizarre Importance of Bleeding Bodies in Medieval Trials

The history of criminal justice and forensic science is really interesting because of all the absurd rituals and superstitions courts relied on to determine guilt or innocence right up until the 19th...

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