Travis Rupp has the coolest job. He is a self-proclaimed “beer archaeologist” and I want to hang out with him. Obviously, at AntiquityNOW, we think archaeology is pretty fascinating. Digging up ancient toilets? Sign us up. Excavating an ancient village? We’re there. Meticulously and tediously removing the dust from a single ancient coin? We’d love to help. But, not everyone finds the past so exciting. However, we’re willing to bet, nearly everyone can agree there is something amazing and fun about recreating the drinks of the past. Who doesn’t want to cheers with a Viking-inspired beer or raise a glass of “Beersheba” from ancient Israel? Check out this article from NPR for all of the delicious details about Rupp and his quest for antiquity’s most fabulous brews: Beer Archaeologists Are Reviving Ancient Ales — With Some Strange Results.
And don’t miss our very own article about ancient beer. Did you know “ancient history reveals that, as far back as 4,000 years ago (and probably further), brewing was done primarily by women?” True story. Learn more here.
When was the last time you sat through an entire commercial? Perhaps during the Super Bowl? With today’s DVR, Netflix, Hulu, etc., being forced to suffer through 3 minutes of advertising is a thing of the past. Advertisers have had to become more clever, even tricky, and some would say invasive, in order to get our attention. Now, their ads pop up on our social media feeds, web browsers and even our email. It seems we’ve dodged one type of sales pitch, only to be bombarded with dozens more! Surely this is a modern nuisance. Actually, it’s not. Check out our two part series, “How Advertising Helped Write History,” to learn all about how ancient salesmen hawked everything from olive oil to a date with a gladiator.
Tonight, the world will watch as the Games of the XXXI Olympiad open in Rio. In the opening ceremony, we will enjoy stunning displays of modern technology and in the games that follow we’ll witness fascinating feats of modern sport. It is incredible to see how far we’ve come in our athletic pursuits, but it is important to remember when all of this began. Check out our posts below on the history of the Olympics and get ready to watch the world unite in Rio!
Posted in Blog, Culture, Holidays, Public Life, Recreation, Sports
Tagged ancient history, ancient Olympics, ancient sports, AntiquityNOW, Olympic games, Rio 2016
It is the season of toys! Parents are scouring store shelves for the most popular gadgets and games to wrap up for the holiday season. Today’s most prized playthings may take more batteries than those of the ancients, but our ancestors still knew how to have a good time. Consider the recent findings at a 1,900 year old Roman settlement in Germany. Archaeologists uncovered a board game piece and a die, proving the soldiers who lived there weren’t all work, no play. Read the complete article here.
Further evidence of ancient playtime was discovered in a 2,300-year-old tomb near Qingzhou City in China. The heavily looted site still holds valuable treasures, including pieces from a mysterious board game. “Archaeologists found a 14-face die made of animal tooth, 21 rectangular game pieces with numbers painted on them and a broken tile which was once part of a game board.” They believe these pieces were used to play a game called “Bo” that hasn’t been played in 1,500 years. Click here to read more about this fascinating find.
To learn more about how our ancient ancestors amused themselves, check out our Kids’ Blog, Ancient Toys, Wii and You!
Posted in Blog, Kids: Public Life, Kids: Recreation, Public Life, Recreation
Tagged ancient Chinese games, ancient dice, ancient die, ancient games, ancient history, AntiquityNOW, Bo, board games, Kids' blog, Roman dice, Roman die
What is it about zombies that is so fascinating? The Walking Dead, a TV program now in its sixth season and the “world’s #1 show”, delivers a dystopic picture of a society beset by a virus that turns people into zombies. Its spinoff, Fear the Walking Dead, was a ratings winner upon its debut in summer 2015. Putting a new spin on an age-old plague story, these two shows build upon the premise that everyone somehow became infected, and that the virus lies dormant until death, when the corpse is reanimated unless a catastrophic brain injury is sustained. Drawing from this concept, the writers have crafted some intriguing twists and turns. Both shows have strong storylines and character development. Fans are rabid about the plot unfoldings, even when they diverge from the original comic books. Marketers have had a great run with all things zombie and rumor is some people are even reading again. So maybe it’s a lot of comic books but a range of zombie tomes has also joined the enviable list of beloved vampire and werewolf tales. Continue reading
Posted in Art, Biology, Blog, Culture, Public Life, Recreation, Science and Technology, Science Fiction, War and Violence
Tagged ancient history, ancient plague, ancient zombies, AntiquityNOW, plague, The Walking Dead, vaccine, voodoo, zombie apocalypse, zombies
Planning on enjoying fireworks? Read our blog post, “The History of Fireworks: Celebrating Life’s Moments in Color, Light and Sound,” to learn more about the history of fireworks!
Or, if you have kids or students, check out our annotated Kids’ Blog, “Boom! Pow! Whizzz!: The History of Fireworks,” packed with fun facts and great activities!
June is National Rose Month, so we thought we would pay homage to this lovely flower. Roses have a storied and ancient history. Their delicate petals, their splendiferous hues, their enticing fragrances and their visual presence has inspired civilizations from time immemorial. Roses have been around for some 35 million years and evidence of their past glories have been found in the far reaches of the ancient world. Let’s explore their history further as we take a walk through the beauteous Rose Garden in Portland, Oregon, where the ancient and modern find common blooming rights. To make your stroll even more memorable, steep some rose hips tea, sit back and relax to the sumptuous tones of Enya’s China Roses. Continue reading
Posted in Art, Beauty, Blog, Culinary, Culture, Holidays, Public Life, Recreation, Science and Technology
Tagged ancient botany, ancient flowers, ancient rose, AntiquityNOW, flowers, National Rose Month, rose, tea roses
Crater Lake National Park, Oregon.
UPDATE! This post was originally published on September 9, 2014. In several countries around the world,
students are gearing up for summer break, an exciting time of fun, sun and long-awaited vacations. If
you live in the United States, your family may be planning a trip to one of the many national parks. There
are a wide variety of places to visit, packed with rich cultural heritage, fascinating pieces of history, grand
architecture, breathtaking natural vistas and heart-pounding encounters with wildlife. Before you go, take a minute to read our post below to learn about the ancient history of natural settings and how our park system came to be. Also, if you want a truly memorable experience, check out this article in The New York Times on how to get the most out of your national park visit.
When you first enter Crater Lake National Park, it’s easy to imagine you’ve stepped thousands of years into the past. Crater Lake in Oregon was created when Mount Mazama erupted close to 8,000 years ago, and ignoring the RVs visiting the park today, it’s easy to imagine it has not changed much from what it must have looked like after the ash settled. Continue reading
Posted in Architecture, Blog, Culture, Public Life, Recreation
Tagged Ancient Egypt, ancient gardens, Ancient Greece, ancient history, ancient rock carvings, Ancient Rome, AntiquityNOW, National Park Service
May Day was last Friday, but it’s not too late to celebrate the fresh and breezy month of May and the ushering in of a warm and beautiful spring! The Celts loved the change in seasons and they celebrated with the Beltane festival. There was plenty of food and drink, of course. But like other ancient cultures, the seasonal festival reflected the Celts’ deep spiritual intertwining with the natural world around them. Continue reading
Posted in Blog, Bon Appetit Wednesday, Culinary, Culture, Holidays, Public Life, Recreation, Religion
Tagged ancient food, ancient history, ancient recipes, AntiquityNOW, Beltane, Celtic holidays, Celtic rituals, spring festival, woodruff
Episode 6 of the documentary series Strata: Portraits of Humanity, produced by AntiquityNOW’s partner, Archaeological Legacy Institute, comprises two films that explore the forces that bind us as a people in a particular society. Continue reading
Posted in Art, Blog, Culture, Dance, Education, Holidays, Kids Blog, Music, Public Life, Recreation, Strata Curricula
Tagged ancient history, AntiquityNOW, Archaeological Legacy Institute, Euskal Jaiak, Native American history, Somerset Levels and Moors, Southwest England history, Strata Portraits of Humanity, The Archaeology Channel