Category Archives: Science and Technology

Chronicling Antiquity in the Digital Age: An Interview With the Founders of Ancient History Encyclopedia

AHE logoAncient History Encyclopedia (AHE) describes itself as a “small non-profit organization dedicated to giving highest-quality history content to the world’s history enthusiasts, teachers, and students for free.”[1] Lofty ideals indeed. But in this world of constant distraction and mind-numbing overload, how many people really care about lives long past? Turns out quite a few. Since its founding in 2009, Ancient History Encyclopedia has become the global leader in ancient history content online, attracting more monthly traffic than the British Museum or the Louvre. It’s secret? Find out below in our exclusive interview with AHE Founder and CEO Jan van der Crabben and Co-founder and Communications Director James Blake Wiener. Continue reading

Strata: Portraits of Humanity, Episode 13, “Syracuse 3D Reborn”

StrataImage-webThe latest entry in the video news-magazine series Strata:  Portraits of Humanity, produced by AntiquityNOW’s partner, Archaeological Legacy Institute, offers a feast for the eyes. It captures in astonishing dimension and detail the glorious city of Syracuse, in its time the epitome of Greek enterprise, art and culture. Continue reading

For the Sake of Us All: Rescuing Our Cultural Legacies

AN Forum

AntiquityNOW along with many cultural heritage organizations looks with dismay and horror at how some of the world’s most ancient and history-laden sites are being destroyed by ideology, corrupt politics, fragile economies and human deprivation. There is no one answer on how to stem the tide of destruction, but the Global Heritage Fund’s Executive Director Stefaan Poortman has some insightful and intriguing observations on the current state of affairs. Continue reading

Fact or Fiction? Ancient Grain

Fact or Fiction curly and roundWheat has been cultivated as a crop for thousands of years, sustaining many cultures through time. It has often been referred to as the “mother of all grains” for its importance, and even today is used in a wide range of products that supports the economies of countries around the world. Continue reading

Zombie Apocalypse, Part 3: Emergency Preparedness and the End of Life As We Know It (We’re Not Kidding)

zombie preparednessIn Zombie Apocalypse Part 1:  The Lamentable History of Zombies and Zombie Apocalypse, Part 2: Zombies and Pop Culture, we looked at how zombies became the current phenomenon of choice. We also examined the allure of spine-tingling fear and the chemistry of why we love to be frightened.  After all, it’s a suspension of reality. It’s just great fun.

Or so you thought. Continue reading

Zombie Apocalypse, Part 2: Zombies and Pop Culture

Night of the Living DeadIn Zombie Apocalypse, Part 1: The Lamentable History of Zombies we examined the backstory of zombies and how Haitian voodoo and African mythology contributed to their embedding in religious and cultural beliefs. Today we are exploring how the zombie became a pop culture phenomenon. Continue reading

Zombie Apocalypse, Part 1: The Lamentable History of Zombies

zombieWhat 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”[1], 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

Bon Appetit Wednesday! African Nightshade

managu“Eat your greens and you’ll grow big and strong!” Since childhood we’ve been taught the importance of eating leafy green veggies, but that never seemed to persuade our minds or palates.  But times have changed, and as a surprise to our younger selves, it seems that greens are getting more and more popular. No longer do we run from kale, or hide our collards under the napkin. Today, greens are all the rage. In fact in Africa, restaurants are increasingly turning to ancient, indigenous species to invigorate their menus and bring back a taste of the past. One of the most popular veggies making a comeback is the African Nightshade. Today, we’re bringing you a recipe for Cream of Nightshade Spinach. Spoiler Alert: There’s no spinach involved. Continue reading

The Believing of Seeing, Part 2: The World of a Modern Day Psychic

An Oracle Turtle Shell. Tortoise plastron with divination inscription from the Shang dynasty, dating to the reign of King Wu Ding. Held at the National Museum of China in Beijing.

An Oracle Turtle Shell. Tortoise plastron with divination inscription from the Shang dynasty, dating to the reign of King Wu Ding. Held at the National Museum of China in Beijing.

In Part 1 of The Believing of Seeing, we examined the Oracle of Delphi and its importance in the ancient world. Today we meet a modern day psychic who shares with us her own insights into her gift of foresight.

Jeannie Reed is a professional psychic with an international clientele. For thirty years she has practiced her craft. She believes that each of us has psychic ability that only needs to be nurtured and developed to be realized. Below she describes her awakening as a professional reader and the evolution of her ability to see what others cannot. Continue reading

The Believing of Seeing, Part 1: The Oracle of Delphi

Priestess of Delphi (1891), as imagined by John Collier; the Pythia is inspired by pneuma rising from below as she sits on a tripod.

Priestess of Delphi (1891), as imagined by John Collier; the Pythia is inspired by pneuma rising from below as she sits on a tripod.

This time of year we love to explore all things unexplainable. But while Halloween has become a marketer’s dream, the spirits and forces that we mimic and parody in costumes and lawn ornaments are the stuff that defined ancient lives. Fear of the unknown, obeisance to light and dark forces and importunities to celestial powers were all seminal to the rise and fall of cultures around the world. For this reason, those individuals who had prescient powers were held in particularly high regard. The Oracle of Delphi in ancient Greece is perhaps one of the most famous of these ancient seers. Continue reading