Questions tagged [ancient-history]

Ancient history was from the beginning of recorded history (c. 4000 B.C.) until the fall of the Roman Empire (c. A.D. 500).

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181 views

Is there any data that supports or refutes the claim made in this paper about the Harappan/Indus Valley civilization?

I came across an old article recently, about the collapse of the Harappan civilization. Here's the paper it is based on- https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3387054/ I found this to be the ...
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1answer
338 views

How did Jerusalem function as an ancient city without a major water source? [closed]

Jerusalem seems to be an exception to the rule that all ancient cities must either be on a river or freshwater lake. First settlement is estimated at 3500 BC. The nearest major river as far as I can ...
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1answer
804 views

Did the people of the past consider plants alive? [closed]

Did the people of the past consider plants alive? If so, how did they come to the idea that plants have something in common with animals?
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1answer
219 views

Historical Examples of Child Exchange between cultures or nations [closed]

Are there historical examples of a noble or other representative of a nation-state exchanging his own child or other children from his nation-state with those of an enemy, in order to solidify a ...
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1answer
988 views

What is the race of Iranians? [closed]

What is the race of Iranians? Most Iranians claim to be Aryans, is there any scientific evidence to support this?
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1answer
117 views

Is there any research on the (possible) ancient origins of populations in different regions in Cyprus and their movements on the island?

I was looking at a map of the kingdoms of ancient Cyprus where each kingdom was presented to have had either Greek majority , Phoenician majority or was mixed Greek/Eteocypriot so I was wondering if I ...
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1answer
135 views

When were the first heating apparatus used for bathing?

If in the Odyssey they already washed themselves with warm water prepared on fire, why didn’t the athletes in the loutrons of the palaestrae do the same? They used cold water, which is ineffective for ...
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1answer
199 views

Are there any theories of Tiglath Pileser III's origins?

Most histories gloss over the low point of Assyria from 800-745. I have become interested in the period because of Shammuramat, the Babylonian regent, and her sons, who struggled for power with an ...
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2answers
178 views

Does there exist a comprehensive list of every ancient document and artifact ever recovered?

If I wanted to become an expert on Mesopotamia, for instance, and I wanted to read every text written in that region from the dawn of recorded history to the 5th century CE, could I find a complete ...
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1answer
1k views

Were ancient (Greek) battles fought like duels between heroes? [closed]

In dramas on TV and film we are often shown a "hero" standing in front of the army, fighting alone against a "villain". Their soldier comrades don't help out much, as we would expect them to do in ...
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1answer
131 views

Were Pharaohs still inscribed on walls and written on papyrus after their deaths?

If so, was it done for historical record, or tradition? Any details on this appreciated. Do we have any instances of artifacts depicting past Pharaohs or events that occurred before they were created?...
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146 views

Why did Antiochus IV of the Seleucids work so hard to keep Coele-Syra from Ptolemy VI of Eygpt?

In 168 BC when Antiochus IV king of the Seleucid Empire marched on Alexandria to make sure that Ptolemy VI of Egypt would not try to take back the land that Antiochus' ancestors had gained for Egypt, ...
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1answer
120 views

Do (modern) audio recordings exist for the sound of Ancient Egyptian, Ancient Coptic, or other ancient languages?

Here are audio recordings of the Akkadian or other Babylonian languages. They are of modern people reenacting it, but it sounds great. Good intro to the real ancient world. Do any audio recordings ...
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1answer
152 views

Where can I find high-resolution images of these Sumerian tablets

I've looked around quite a bit and couldn't find them. Looking for sketches, and a bonus images of the tablets, of the following Sumerian documents: Kesh temple hymn (maybe that is in here, not sure) ...
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2answers
248 views

What was the role of state sacrifices and music in Ming China?

I don't understand what is the role of music in their lives and what is the relevance between sacrifices and music? As a historical ethnomusicologist, I wish I could do fieldwork in the Ming court, ...
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2answers
933 views

What's the origin of Crespi plates? [closed]

I've found this article about The Mysterious Crespi Collection & The Metal Library And there is a picture of The enigmatic Crespi plate: And it's said: The age and origin of these items is ...
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1answer
584 views

When was the term “Dravida” first used and what is the context with which it was presented? [closed]

The term Dravida has been found in many contexts across language, people, architecture, politics, culture etc. While I find various material in various contexts, I am not able to find out the answer ...
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1answer
154 views

Why did marriage and multiple children make Hurrem Sultan special?

As far as I have learnt there was a princess named Ayesa (Hatun), daughter of Meñli I Giray of Crimean, who was first married off to Shehzade Mehmed, brother of Sultan Selim 1. After the death of the ...
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1answer
111 views

Which ancient cults would cut out the hearts of live animals and offer them as sacrifices?

Which ancient cults would cut out the hearts of live animals and offer them as sacrifices? The Mishnah (Avodah Zarah 2:3) mentions a concept called עורות לבובין which Maimonides and other commentators ...
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1answer
4k views

The meaning of Pan-India Character? [closed]

What is meant by the Pan-India Character during the Mauryan Empire at the time of Chandagupta Maurya ?
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1answer
910 views

Why didn't the Romans set up breeding mechanisms as a main source to supplement their population of slaves instead of relying on defeated enemies? [closed]

By the time of the Flavians there were large reductions in the supply of slaves, both those peacefully imported from outside the Empire and those captured in military campaigns. It was a time of ...
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94 views

Do Scythians has hardened leather or cuir bouilli made of human skin? [closed]

Did Scythian nomads in antiquity have or use hardened leather in their equipments (especially armor, such as cuir bouilli) made from human skin? or they only use raw human skin or hide/leather ...
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54 views

As Rome began to decline is there any contemporary accounts from time as to the cause? [duplicate]

I guess fall of Rome seems amazing to me in that they had things we recognise in modern states Militia, ability to buy property with paper rather than gold and manufacturing. As decline began as there ...
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104 views

Why did many Hellenic or Hellenized names in antiquity end in -bazos or -dates?

Ancient names ending with bazos (or bazus), eg megabazos(great-x), Artabazos (again great-x), Pharnabazos. And Dates (Mithradates, Tiridates). I know Mithra was a deity, what does the second half of ...
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126 views

What would one call a skilled metal worker in Jerusalem, circa 600 BC?

I'm doing research for a book of fiction in which the main character is a skilled metalworker in ancient Jerusalem, circa 600 BC. I want to be authentic and historically accurate. This person is ...
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258 views

What is the origin of the idea to cover genitals with clothes or other materials? [closed]

This question was difficult to word. Please edit if it can be worded better. I've seen many murals and ancient drawing as far back as 3,000BC (Kemetian, Sumerian) of society wearing atleast some ...
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177 views

Did soldiers and/or athletes of ancient times perform any kind of stretch or warmup exercises?

There are some 'time travel' stories where the protagonist, hailing from a modern age, does stretches and warmup exercises (calisthenics, radio, etc) and the natives have no idea what that is. There'...
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135 views

Question on names in ancient Rome

I'm writing a novel set in 268 AD and the character is called Marcus Piavonius Victorinus, one of the many upstart military emperors during the Crisis of the Third Century. I've heard that by this ...
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172 views

Codex A for Herodotus' Histories and questions about discovery of the fragments of the Oxyrhynchus Papyri

This question is related to this one: Where can I find the primary source for Herodotus' Histories?. Thank you to everyone who provided information there. That really helped! I have some ...
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233 views

Have large human bones been used as measuring instruments?

Have any of the six types of large bones from the arms1 or legs2 of human beings ever been used (to a significant or considerable extent), in ancient or prehistoric times, as measuring instruments for ...
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135 views

What were the incentives for war during the Warring States Period?

I've been reading about the Warring States Period in Li Feng's 'Early China', and I don't know if I missed a passage but I can't seem to figure out why the period was so violent. I've been searching ...
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240 views

Did the Designers of Teotihucan have an advanced understanding of Acoustics?

Teotihucan was one of the most impressively built and planned cities in ancient and world history. It is approximately 30 miles South of Mexico City and was founded around 200 BC/BCE-(though its ...
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121 views

Are there “Sumerian” figurines from the Uruk and Ubaid periods?

There are distinctive Sumerian figurines from the Early Dynastic period. One of the early arguments for indigenous Sumerians was that these figurines were also in the Jemdet Nasr, Uruk, and Ubaid ...
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1answer
204 views

Did Emperor Pushyamitra Shunga persecute Buddhists?

Did Emperor Pushyamitra Shunga persecute Buddhists?
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171 views

How exactly was the Second Temple destroyed?

What is known regarding the techniques used to destroy the Second Temple? It was quite a large set of buildings made of stone blocks, and Romans didn't know (afaik) explosive techniques good for ...
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4answers
986 views

Was Greece the only thing stopping a Persian invasion of Europe?

During the Greco-Persian war, it is of course well documented that the Greeks managed to hold off the Persians in numerous conflicts including the Battle of Thermopylae (not strictly a victory, I know,...
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2k views

How did people first discover that food is food? [closed]

In ancient times, how did people figure out that certain things are edible? Did someone just pull a potato out of the ground and decide to see what happens if you cook it? Back a long time ago, no one ...
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1answer
192 views

How old is the practice of a woman accompanying another woman to the ladies restroom? [closed]

I am curious to know how old is the practice of a woman accompanying another woman to the ladies restroom. I assume that this practice began in America and Europe when indoor plumbing and indoor ...
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1answer
767 views

Did the deity “Horus” pre-date “Horus-Aha”?

Hor-Aha (or Aha or Horus Aha) is considered the second pharaoh of the First Dynasty of Egypt by some Egyptologists, others consider him the first one and corresponding to Menes. He lived around the ...
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1k views

Were women in 1st century Israel not trusted as witnesses in court?

A common thing I've heard growing up is that women living in Israel in the 1st century couldn't be witnesses in a court of law because [reasons]. The times that I've heard this said it has also ...
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3answers
494 views

Were Moses & Abraham historical figures?

History is not my area of specialization. I am curious to know about the historicity of Moses and Abraham from the viewpoint of modern critical scholarship. It would be great if references are ...
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2answers
906 views

Could Magna Graeca have expanded beyond the Mediterranean sea region? [closed]

Between the 700's-500's BC/BCE, the Ancient Greeks sailed to and founded many strategically valuable towns and cities in lands across the Mediterranean and Black Sea regions; (the majority of these ...
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2answers
566 views

What is the true reason for the destruction of the Indus Civilisation? [closed]

I would like to know the views that the historians of this age give about the destruction of the Indus Civilisation. Some views were like foreign invasions, natural disasters and epidemics. But I ...
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1answer
211 views

What did the Greeks call their gods while under Roman rule? [closed]

I read this question and it made me think. The Romans "inherited" the Greek gods, they just gave them new names, but what happened in actual Greece after the Roman conquest of Greece? Did ...
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1answer
307 views

What kind of impact did ancient armies have on civilians and the environments outside of combat?

Are there any notable studies of the impacts of ancient battles on civilian populations and the environment outside warfare? What happened to farms and villages that lie in the path of ancient armies?...
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502 views

Intuitive misconceptions [closed]

Are there any ideas that one would have in History intuitively that would be disproven by analysis? On the other hand, are there any intuitive historical ideas that have been verified by historians? ...
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646 views

What did ancient countries call themselves? [closed]

Especially non-European nations -- I'm under the impression that the names given to these countries, e.g. "the Maurya Dynasty", "the Qin Dynasty", "the Akkadian Empire", "the Old Kingdom of Egypt", ...
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239 views

What are the most recommended non-biased books on Egyptian History

I am new to Egyptology, what are the most recommended non-biased books on Egyptian History, Hieroglyphs, mythology, etc... that are not biased and written by experts in the field? By non biased, I ...
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1answer
567 views

What was the image of Jhwh before it was almost erased from history?

Clay tablets found in Mesopotamia tell us that Adam was an earth god. In Genesis Adam was demoted to human status probably to make a monotheistic text possible. Did Jhwh have an image (idol) before ...
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2answers
258 views

For Alexander, what were the incentives of expanding to the west vs to the east? [closed]

For Alexander, what were the incentives of expanding to the west vs to the east? If Alexander would have decided to go westwards, would it be as successful and rewarding in comparison to his ...