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Joanna Gillan's picture

Joanna Gillan

Joanna Gillan is a Co-Owner, Editor and Writer of Ancient Origins. 

Joanna completed a Bachelor of Science (Psychology) degree in Australia and published research in the field of Educational Psychology. She has a rich and varied career, ranging from teaching children with autism in an early intervention program, owning and operating an online English teaching business, working as a research and project officer in the office of TRH The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall and assistant in the office of Prince William and Prince Harry, as well as co-owning a website design and development company.

Joanna co-founded Ancient Origins with Dr Ioannis Syrigos. Together they immersed themselves in their personal passion for ancient history, mythology and human origins.  She loves learning about and experiencing other cultures and has spent time living in Australia, UK, Greece, Ecuador and Ireland and travelling to hundreds of historic sites around the world.

Joanna has written over 1,000 articles for Ancient Origins, some of which have been mentioned in the New York Times, CNN, Fox News, The Guardian, Peru Weekly, International Business Times, Spiegel and The Daily Mail. She has contributed as a guest writer for other media organizations, including The Epoch Times and iSpectrum Magazine, and has been interviewed on historical subjects on ten radio shows, including the BBC in the UK, and Newstalk in Ireland. She has also appeared on Ireland’s national TV channel, RTE, on the Today Show


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Representational image of Muslim achievements to science, medicine, philosophy and education. Source: mknisanci / Adobe Stock

“Historical Amnesia” Obscures Forgotten Achievements of Muslim Culture

In an article authored by Craig Considine and published in The Huffington Post , the veil is lifted on a profound historic oversight in some educational curriculums: the neglect of Muslim...
Representational image of the allure of incredible ancient texts. Source: Sodapeaw / Adobe Stock

Ten Extraordinary Ancient Texts That Exploded Our Ancient Knowledge

There are literally thousands of incredible texts that have survived from the ancient world, which are etched onto copper, beautifully inscribed on papyrus, chipped onto tablets, and even written...
10 amazing artifacts of the ancient world. 	Source: National Museum of Denmark, Public Domain, University of Birmingham, The James ossuary was on display at the Royal Ontario Museum from November 15, 2002, to January 5, 2003/CC0, Osama Shukir Muhammed Amin FRCP / CC BY-SA 4.0

Ten Amazing Artifacts Reveal the Secrets of the Ancient World

There are undoubtedly millions of amazing artifacts from the ancient world that have served to shed light on the lives of our ancestors from many millennia ago. But some stand out for their...
Neolithic settlement of Çatalhöyük, Turkey. Source: Omar hoftun/CC BY-SA 3.0

The Unmatched 9,500-Year-Old Honeycomb City of Çatalhöyük

Overlooking the Konya Plain in Turkey lies the remarkable and unique ancient city of Çatalhöyük, the largest and best-preserved Neolithic site found to date. At a time when most of the world's people...
Detail of a mural from an Eastern Han tomb (25 to 220 AD) at Zhucun, Luoyang, Henan province. The painting utilizes Han purple and Han blue pigment. Source: Public domain

Han Purple: The 2,800-Year-Old Mystery Solved by Quantum Physicists

Han purple, an artificial pigment created by the Chinese over 2,500 years ago, was used in ancient artworks such as wall paintings, the famed terracotta warriors, ceramics, metalware and jewelry. A...
Representational image of Maya healing by a medicine man. Source: HaiderShah / Adobe Stock

Unlocking the Secrets of Maya Healing

At a time when human beings are suffering from a host of illnesses caused by stress and modern-day living, the need for ancient wisdom has never been more important. In fact, many people have become...
An artist’s imaginary depiction of a pharaoh burning herbs in a ritual. Source: Fair use

Dealing in the Past: How Did Ancient Egyptians Get Nicotine and Cocaine?

The discovery of traces of nicotine and cocaine within 3,000-year-old human remains, which came to be known as Egypt’s cocaine mummies, raised curious questions amongst historians. Challenging...
Records on the shelves of one of the Archives' storage areas, known as the Scaffali in Ferro, which contains 13 kilometers of shelving over two floors. Source: Vatican Apostolic Archives

The Extraordinary Tale of a Pope, a Pirate, and a Dead Bishop’s Treasure

Documents published from the Vatican archives in 2014 revealed an incredible tale of pirate attacks and corruption involving a 14th century bishop, whose lifelong accumulation of treasure was...
A banquet in Nero’s palace, by Ulpiano Checa y Sanz. Source: Public domain

Emperor Nero’s Legendary Revolving Dining Room Really Existed

While the extravagant palace of Emperor Nero , the Domus Aurea—which boasted some 300 rooms covered in dazzling polished white marble—was first rediscovered during the Renaissance, in 2009 a team of...
Images of Mysterious Rock Art. Source: JSirlin/Adobe Stock; ©John Wombell; ©Salima Ikram; ©Amit Bhardwaj/Times of India; Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland

Ten Mysterious Rock Art Examples from the Ancient World

Rock paintings and engravings are among the world’s oldest continuously practiced art form and are as diverse as the wide-ranging cultures and civilizations that have produced them. Depictions of...
Port Royal underwater archaeological site.  Source: Wonderous World

Port Royal Unveiled: Sunken Secrets of a Pirate Paradise

Seventeenth century life in Port Royal, Jamaica, commonly referred to as “the wickedest city on Earth,” conjures up images of marauding pirates, treasure hunters, naval conquests, looting and the...
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...
The enigmatic underwater Yonaguni monument. Source: nudiblue/Adobe Stock

Is the 10,000-Year-Old Yonaguni Monument a Man-Made Marvel or Nature's Art?

Nestled along the southern coast of Yonaguni, Japan, are enigmatic submerged ruins that have captured the fascination of researchers and ignited fervent debates. Believed to date back approximately...
Ancient Christmas customs still held today. A door decorated with a Christmas wreath. (CC0) Snowy holly. (liz west/CC BY 2.0) Mistletoe. (CC0) A Yuletide fireplace. (Randy Robertson/CC BY 2.0)

Mistletoe, Holly, and Yuletide Cheer: Weaving Nature into Ancient Christmas Customs

It is estimated 2 billion people celebrate Christmas each year. Although the popular holiday is linked to Christianity and the birth of Jesus Christ, people all over the world, Christians or not,...
Representational image of ancient amazing inventions. Source: Anna / Adobe Stock

Ancient Marvels: Ten Amazing Inventions Created Before Their Time

Dating back thousands of years are numerous examples of amazing inventions and ancient technology that leave us awe-struck at the knowledge and wisdom held by people of our past. They were the result...
Traditional Christmas tree. Source: Asad / Adobe Stock

From Mithraic Mysteries to Modern Mirth: Unraveling the Evergreen Christmas Tree Tradition

The Christmas tree is probably one of the most recognizable symbols of Christmas, seen on greeting cards, advertisements, cookies, wrapping paper and in the homes of millions of people around the...