Posts filtered by tags: Ancient World[x]


7 fascinating UNESCO World Heritage Sites

UNESCO World Heritage Sites are locations of high value to humanity, either for their cultural, historical, or natural significance.Some are even designated as World Heritage Sites because humans don't go there at all, while others have felt the effects of too much human influence.These 7 UNESCO World Heritage Sites each represent an overlooked or at-risk facet of humanity's collective cultural heritage. None There are over 1,000 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in places ranging from Afghanistan to ...
Tags: Art, Silk Road, Iraq, India, Religion, History, Afghanistan, Nature, Unesco, Taliban, Innovation, Zimbabwe, Jordan, Archeology, Unesco World Heritage Sites, Samarra

Vikings unwittingly made their swords stronger by trying to imbue them with spirits

Iron Age Scandinavians only had access to poor quality iron, which put them at a tactical disadvantage against their neighbors.To strengthen their swords, smiths used the bones of their dead ancestors and animals, hoping to transfer the spirit into their blades.They couldn't have known that in so doing, they actually were forging a rudimentary form of steel. None Science fiction author Arthur C. Clarke wrote that "any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." While we us...
Tags: Archeology, Death, Violence, War, Ancient world

Herodotus’ mystery vessel turns out to have been real

In 450 BCE, Greek historian Herodotus described a barge that's never been found. When the ancient port of Thonis-Heracleion was discovered, some 70 sunken ships were found resting in its waters. One boat, Ship 17, uncannily matches the Herodotus' description. None From [the acacia] tree they cut pieces of wood about two cubits in length and arrange them like bricks, fastening the boat together by running a great number of long bolts through the two-cubit pieces; and when they have thus fastene...
Tags: Transportation, History, Discovery, Egypt, Oceans, Innovation, Archeology, Herodotus, Robinson, Baris, Ancient World, Belov, Franck Goddio, Thonis Heracleion, Damian Robinson, Alexander Belov

Why humans struggled to make 'f' and 'v' sounds until farming came along

A new study suggests that the f and v sounds were made easier to pronounce by the change in our diets the invention of farming made possible. The idea isn't a new one, but is only now being taken seriously.Even today, many hunter-gather cultures lack labiodentals in their languages. The Neolithic Revolution fundamentally changed how humanity went about the business of surviving. With the rise of farming, humans no longer had to travel into inclement climates following the migration of animals, ...
Tags: Language, Innovation, Anthropology, Agriculture, University of Bristol, Physiology, University of Zurich, Ancient World, Sean Roberts, Human body, Steven Moran, Hockett, Charles Hockett, Balthasar Bickel Steven Moran Damián Blasi

The mystery behind Minoan bull-leaping

The Minoan civilization, which existed on the island of Crete nearly 5,000 years ago, produced a treasure trove of artwork showing a unique sport or ritual: men leaping over charging bullsScholars have argued over whether the Minoans actually performed this dangerous activity, though the evidence seems to suggest that they did.If so, modern bull-leaping sports, such as those practiced in France and Spain, may have their roots in ancient Minoa. None The Minoans, a nearly 4,000-year-old civilizati...
Tags: Art, France, Sports, Spain, History, Innovation, University of Pennsylvania, Archeology, Crete, Knossos, Ancient World, Minoans, Jeremy McInerney

Cahokia: North America's massive, ancient city

Near modern-day St. Louis, Missouri, you can find towering mounds of earth that were once the product of a vast North American culture.Cahokia was the largest city built by this Native American civilization.Because the ancient people who built Cahokia didn't have a writing system, little is known of their culture. Archaeological evidence, however, hints at a fascinating society. None Mesopotamia had Ur, a wealthy city from 2100 BCE and a towering ziggurat. Egypt had Memphis and Alexandria, with ...
Tags: London, History, Egypt, Innovation, Anthropology, Archeology, North America, St Louis, Columbus, Memphis, Alexandria, St Louis Missouri, Mesopotamia, Cahokia, Ancient World, Grand Plaza

Gossip was a powerful tool for the powerless in Ancient Greece

At the heart of the greatest works of Ancient Greek literature are mighty acts of revenge. Revengers overcome their enemies through superior physical prowess, as when Achilles kills Hector in a single combat to avenge the death of his comrade Patroclus; or through their employment of trickery and deceit, as when Medea slays Creon and his daughter by using poisoned clothing in revenge against Jason, her unfaithful husband. But how could a person lacking in physical strength, magical abilities or ...
Tags: Gender, Greece, Society, History, Innovation, Athens, Gender Equality, Jason, Justice System, Aristotle, Achilles, Hector, Ancient Greece, Demosthenes, Ancient World, Creon

Did ancient cave artists share a global language?

Many of these symbols are found in caves in Africa, Asia, Australia and America as well.At least 40,000 years old, the set of symbols may have been a universal communications tool.Among these symbols is the iconic hashtag.A flash of prehistoric magic transports a cave painter 40,000 years into the future. Landing in the here and now, he's left frightened and bewildered by the bombardment of modernity. But there's one ubiquitous symbol the ancient artist instantly recognises: the hashtag. He's pa...
Tags: Europe, Video, Writing, Australia, France, Southeast Asia, India, Africa, America, Communication, Spain, History, Language, Innovation, Anthropology, Portugal

According to pagans, spring is springing

The ancient holiday of Imbolc celebrates the imminent return of the sun in Spring.The holiday also commemorates either goddess Bhrigid or St, Brigid, who may or may not be the same person.Good weather on Imbolc means more winter to come. None Happy Imbolc! As it tends to be with pagan holidays, Celtic and Irish Imbolc is different things to different people and at different times. "Imbolc" is from the Celtic i mbolg, which means"in the belly," probably a reference to pregnant livestock at this...
Tags: Religion, Christmas, History, Ireland, Farmers, Christianity, Innovation, Celtic, Community, King, Saint, Kildare, Pagan, Tara, Samhain, Brigid

Found: Kweneng, a pre-colonial city in South Africa

To the southeast of Johannesburg lies a forgotten city. Formerly seen as some scattered dwellings, it turns out to be the ruins of a metropolis. The past is hidden everywhere, and LiDAR keeps revealing big secrets. None As the cradle of humanity, the little bit we know about Africa's pre-colonial past is not nearly enough. In South Africa, the lack of a written record means that its past remains shrouded in mystery. Recent laser imagery, however, of the Kweneng district southeast of Johannes...
Tags: India, Nigeria, Africa, History, Discovery, South Africa, Innovation, South America, Johannesburg, Archeology, Lidar, Sadr, Ancient City, University of the Witwatersrand, Ancient World, Tswana

We’ve been celebrating pagan holidays a long time

Some lost ancient holidays aren't really so lost after all. All of us celebrate at least some pagan traditions whether we know it or not.There are, though, two things that tend to bring humans together: crises and holidays. One of humanity's greatest advantages is our propensity for community — we can accomplish together what no one can pull off alone. It's not something that happens automatically or even all the time, of course, and we can be fractious. There are, though, two things that tend ...
Tags: Europe, Greece, Religion, Christmas, History, Rome, Christianity, Innovation, Oxford, Community, Jesus, Thor, Juul, Bethlehem, Bacchus, Arthur

Your body’s full of stuff you no longer need. Here's a list.

An evolutionary biologist got people swapping ideas about our lingering vestigia.Basically, this is the stuff that served some evolutionary purpose at some point, but now is kind of, well, extra.Here are the six traits that inaugurated the fun. Evolutionary anthropologist and Boston College post-doc, Dorsa Amir, started the whole thing with a series of eight tweets, and boy did she start something fun. Amir laid out a list of weird, once-useful details of the human anatomy that we continue to c...
Tags: Science, History, Nature, Innovation, Evolution, Darwin, Physiology, Boston College, Amir, Ancient World, Bann, Human body, Dorsa Amir, Sabre Tooth, Stephen Roughley

Teeth prove women helped produce 8th-century religious manuscripts

It turns out medieval religious manuscripts were not exclusively the domain of male monks. Fleck of a rare gemstone pigment in fossilized teeth prove women were involved in the making of religious manuscripts. We'll never see these exquisite books the same way again. Surviving medieval religious manuscripts can be quite beautiful, with impeccable calligraphy and adorned with intricately detailed and brightly colorful illustrations. By and large, their authors remain unknown, and they've been as...
Tags: Art, Books, Gender, History, Afghanistan, Christianity, Innovation, Faith, Salzburg, Radini, Anita Radini, Fleck, Max Planck Institute, Ancient World, Badakshan, Alison Beach

Rare gemstone particles found in an 8th-century nun's mouth shatter a historical misconception

It turns out medieval religious manuscripts were not exclusively the domain of male monks. Fleck of a rare gemstone pigment in fossilized teeth prove women were involved in the making of religious manuscripts. We'll never see these exquisite books the same way again. Surviving medieval religious manuscripts can be quite beautiful, with impeccable calligraphy and adorned with intricately detailed and brightly colorful illustrations. By and large, their authors remain unknown, and they've been as...
Tags: Art, Books, Gender, History, Afghanistan, Christianity, Innovation, Faith, Salzburg, Radini, Anita Radini, Fleck, Max Planck Institute, Ancient World, Badakshan, Alison Beach

What are we really doing here? 10 quotes from Yuval Noah Harari

In Sapiens, Yuval Noah Harari investigated the last half-million years to understand how we've arrived here.In Homo Deus, he speculated on how our present course will influence the future of humanity.Harari's insights are strongly influenced by his thoughts on religion, sexuality, and animal rights. None Israeli historian Yuval Noah Harari made his mark investigating the transition from Neanderthals to Homo sapiens. His 2014 book, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, is that rare history book...
Tags: Animals, Religion, Society, History, United States, Innovation, Anthropology, Trump, Derek, Siddhartha Gautama, Humankind, Yuval Noah Harari, Harari, Homo, Ancient World, Esther perel

3 pieces of historical evidence for the existence of Jesus Christ

Jesus's historical existence is generally accepted among scholars.The evidence for the reality of Jesus Christ includes writings by historians, artifacts and eyewitness accounts.The spiritual and miraculous nature of Jesus is a different story. None Can we prove that Jesus Christ actually walked the Earth about 2,000 years ago? Without getting into the spiritual, science should be able to provide such an answer for a phenomenon that currently has about 2.2 billion adherents around the world, sho...
Tags: Religion, History, Earth, Rome, Palestine, Christianity, Innovation, Archaeology, Jesus, God, Christian, University of Cambridge, Christ, Pliny, Turin, James

The path of bliss: 11 epic quotes from Joseph Campbell

The famous academic will forever be known for his message to "follow your bliss".George Lucas admitted that Star Wars was heavily influenced by Campbell. The Power of Myth remains one of the most popular public television series of all time. None Very few biographies can be described in three words, yet the entirety of mythologist Joseph Campbell's career has often been summed up in one simple message: follow your bliss. Problem is, this catchphrase has been stripped of much of its intended mea...
Tags: Psychology, Hollywood, Religion, Innovation, Storytelling, Literature, Buddhism, George Lucas, Joe, Derek, Bill Moyers, Buddha, Campbell, Joyce, Joseph Campbell, Ancient World

10 of the greatest ancient and pagan holidays

A great deal of modern holidays derived from Ancient Roman festivities.The changes of the seasons was a popular time to hold reverence for local gods and goddesses.Nearly every culture in the past had a unique holiday in which they celebrated, venerated and worshipped.For as long as there has been humankind, there has been celebration. Whether it's the changing of the seasons or worshipping of some deity or idea, we'll always have a cause for revelry. Here are 10 of the greatest ancient and pag...
Tags: Greece, Scotland, Society, History, Earth, Rome, Ireland, Egypt, Christianity, Innovation, Athens, Northern Europe, Marduk, Valentine, Don, Julius Caesar

Why the Nazis were obsessed with finding the lost city of Atlantis

The mythical city of Atlantis was first mentioned in Plato's writings.Top Nazis, including Heimlich Himmler, tried to find the city through expeditions.The island was key to Nazi thinking about the "Aryan race". You might think Spielberg and Lucas just made up all the run-ins Indiana Jones kept having with the Nazis. But the truth is likely stranger than fiction - the Nazis were not only obsessed with the mystical and the undiscovered, they staked a large part of their strategy to winning Worl...
Tags: Asia, Politics, Science, Tibet, Washington, Germany, Nazis, India, Religion, Iran, History, War, Earth, Britain, Innovation, Portugal

How Christians co-opted the winter solstice

Christmas was heavily influenced by the Roman festival of Saturnalia. The historical Jesus was not born on December 25th as many contemporary Christians believe. Many staple Christmas traditions predated the festival and were tied into ancient pagan worship of the sun and related directly to the winter solstice.In the depths of darkness covering the entire Northern Hemisphere, the winter solstice has marked the shortest day of the year. It has always held significance in many culture's religiou...
Tags: Massachusetts, Religion, Christianity, Innovation, Faith, Jesus, Jesus Christ, Bacchus, Northern Hemisphere, Celts, Ancient World, Saturnalia, Lucian of Samosata, Gaius Valerius Catullus

Archaeologists unearth dozens of mummified cats in Egypt

Archaeologists in Egypt have found dozens of mummified cats in the tomb of a royal offical.The cats will join the ranks of hundreds of thousands of previously discovered ancient kitties.While the cats are nothing special, the tomb also held well preserved beetles. There are three things that everybody knows about ancient Egypt: they had mummies, built the pyramids as tombs for kings, and really liked cats. While there is vastly more to ancient Egyptian culture than these details, they are accura...
Tags: Facebook, Death, Animals, Religion, Egypt, Innovation, Smithsonian, University of Bristol, Archeology, Hinduism, UC Berkeley, Khufu, BCE, Ministry of Antiquities, Ancient World, Richard Evershed

How non-industrial cultures view mental illness

Many abnormal behaviors that are considered by western psychologists to be mental illnesses that require treatment are seen in a much different and even positive light in non-industrial or "primitive" societies. Things like hearing voices, hallucinations, and other unconventional behaviors are seen as the start of a spiritual awakening. Many of these individuals go on to become spiritual leaders and shamans of their communities. Alan Watts and Terrence McKenna both commented on and were conce...
Tags: Psychology, Identity, Society, Mental Health, Innovation, Self, Watts, McKenna, DSM, Taoism, Aldous Huxley, Alan Watts, Ancient World, Terence McKenna, Terrence McKenna, British Psychological Association

9 people who were way ahead of their time

Sometimes, people are so far ahead of the curve that it takes everybody else hundreds of years to catch up to their ideas.While many people are content to quietly sit back and flow with popular opinion, these nine thinkers let the world know what it was doing wrong, often with major consequences. These great thinkers remind us that taking an unpopular, bold stance might not be madness. It's been said that when you're one step ahead of the crowd you're a genius but that two steps ahead make you a...
Tags: UK, England, France, India, Religion, Society, Rome, Gay, United States, Feminism, Innovation, Literature, Philosophy, Catholic, Gender Equality, Alexandria

Women Achieved Enormous Power in Ancient Egypt. What They Did With It Is a Warning for Today

"Ancient Egypt allowed more females into power in the ancient world than any other place on earth. Was that society somehow more progressive than we might expect? The answer is a quick and deflating no."
Tags: Gender, News, Opinion, Women, Uncategorized, Egypt, Ancient World

Why Modern Misogynists Love Ancient History, and What They Get Wrong About It, According to an Expert

'Not All Dead White Men' author Donna Zuckerberg talks to TIME
Tags: Books, Gender, News, Opinion, Uncategorized, Ancient World, Donna Zuckerberg

Now that's a dodgy Giza: Eggheads claim Great Pyramid can focus electromagnetic waves

And the Leaning Tower of Pisa can pick up BBC World Service The Great Pyramid of Giza, the oldest of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, has remained an architectural mystery.…
Tags: Software, BBC World Service, Giza, Pisa, Ancient World

Winged words: the importance of birds in the ancient world

One good reason for studying the natural history of the ancient world is that it takes us outside the bubble we happen to be living in now, and enables us to look back at our world from the outside, as it were, and perhaps see it differently. As T.S. Elliot famously said, “the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.” It is estimated that in modern Britain we have lost more than half of all our wildlife in the last fifty years, a staggeri...
Tags: Books, Featured, Britain, Athens, Crete, Pompeii, Aristotle, Aesop, Aristophanes, Ancient Rome, Elliot, Ornithology, Knossos, Homer, Ancient Greece, Arts & Humanities

The Ancient Origins of Our Modern Obsession With Breaking World Records

The impulse now exemplified by the Guinness Book of World Records dates back centuries—but how do you measure a record without a stopwatch?
Tags: News, Uncategorized, Sports, Ancient World

The curious tale of Roman emperors as judges

The first dynasty of Roman emperors, collectively known as the Julio-Claudians, knew how to make headlines. From the frequent accounts by contemporary and later writers of their use of torture, rape, and murder to the more recherché ways of humiliation and abuse such as seeking to appoint a horse as consul (as the historian Cassius Dio says of Caligula), there is little to suggest that the administration of justice was very high on their agenda. Even if we make allowance for the motives of the a...
Tags: Europe, Books, Featured, Law, France, Senate, History, Judge, Magistrate, Nero, Augustus, Roman Empire, Caligula, Ancient World, Legitimacy, Petitioners

How much do you know about ancient ghosts, witches, and monsters?

From tales of Medusa’s wretched gaze turning men to stone to the cunning Sphinx torturing the city of Thebes, supernatural creatures and beings have long been a part of poems and children’s stories for centuries. Ghost stories, urban legends, and tales of frightening monsters still thrill us today. The ancient world was no different. The Greeks’ and Romans’ fears and superstitions informed their culture, and have long fascinated scholars intrigued by the extant corpus of mentions of witches, gho...
Tags: Halloween, Books, Featured, Iliad, Witches, Medusa, Sphinx, Superstitions, Achilles, Thebes, Odysseus, Perseus, Arts & Humanities, Online products, Classics & Archaeology, Oxford Classical Dictionary